RIM unveils BlackBerry’s App World pricing structure, $3 minimum

Chicago (IL) – Research In Motion’s upcoming App World software store has posted a $2.99 minimum price for their fee-based software apps. Applications will be delivered in a 9 by 5-way pricing tier structure, ranging from free to $999.99 max in increments of $1 at some points, up to $50 at other points.

The App World price points will operate across all BlackBerry devices running OS version 4.2.0 or higher, including the BlackBerry Bold 9000, Storm, Pearl and Pearl Flip, Curve 8300, Curve 8900 and the 8800 series.

BlackBerry’s App World store will launch in the United States, Canada and United Kingdom (not all of Europe).

Developers can release any application that can be packaged as a “cod file” using BlackBerry’s Java Development Environment (BlackBerry JDE) which includes a plug-in for Eclipse. Applications are offered either free of charge, or for a one-time fee to end users, and every application must exist in only one category. Developers can promote their own applications, but all downloads must go through the BlackBerry App World “web icon”.

Developers must go through a RIM-approval process for their applications, and will be required to pay a $200 submission fee (which will be refunded if the application is rejected) which will allow for up to 10 applications to be submitted to the App World store. Submitted applications cannot be altered, not even for bug fixes, once submitted and approved.

Although the App World store will launch only in the United States, Canada and UK, RIM is encouraging developers from all over the world to write applications. The exchange rate fees will be deducted from the sales price when paying other-currency developers. RIM has not indicated if they will take a percentage of the sales price.

When launched, purchasers of App World software must use a PayPal account to pay for the applications. They will be able to re-download the application an unlimited number of times, or up to three times per calendar year on other BlackBerry devices.

According to Wired:

“There is likely to be a big difference in the demographic of Apple app store users and BlackBerry App World,” says Rana Sobhany, vice-president of marketing for Medialets, a mobile advertising and analytics firm. “And the business users demographic of BlackBerry users could be a reason why the company has set a higher minimum price point.”

The major difference between RIM’s BlackBerry App World pricing structure and other stores is the minimum price. There is a huge gap between free and $2.99, and many believe a $0.99 starting price point would be far more desirable. Using the 9-way vertical tier, RIM has left some open slots in the right-most column, possible for future use, however.

Breakdown of BlackBerry App World price points:

Tier $1 Tier $1 Tier $10 Tier $50 Tier $100 Tier
1 Free $10.99 $19.99 $149.99 $599.99
2 $2.99 $11.99 $29.99 $199.99 $699.99
3 $3.99 $12.99 $39.99 $249.99 $799.99
4 $4.99 $13.99 $49.99 $299.99 $899.99
5 $5.99 $14.99 $59.99 $349.99 $999.99
6 $6.99 $15.99 $69.99 $399.99 reserved
7 $7.99 $16.99 $79.99 $449.99 reserved
8 $8.99 $17.99 $89.99 $499.99 reserved
9 $9.99 $18.99 $99.99 $549.99 reserved
Ratio for foreign currencies:
$2.99 = CDN$3.69 = GBP2.59 = 2.75 Euros

See the preliminary BlackBerry App World FAQ.