PayPal Update Deals Further Blow To BlackBerry, Windows Phone - InformationWeek

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5/26/2016
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PayPal Update Deals Further Blow To BlackBerry, Windows Phone

PayPal will end support for its popular online payment app at the end of June, dealing another blow to BlackBerry and Windows Phone. The update also eliminates support for Amazon.

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PayPal has just driven another nail into the coffin of BlackBerry, Windows Phone, and Amazon mobile operating systems by announcing it is dropping support for all three platforms with the latest update to its mobile application.

In a May 25 blog post announcing the upgrade to Version 6.0 of the PayPal app, Joanna Lambert, the company's vice president of global consumer product and engineering, noted that Amazon Fire or Blackberry users will be no longer be able to use the app on June 30, the date it will be discontinued.

However, she noted customers using those devices would still be able to log into PayPal on these phones through the company's mobile Web interface.

In addition, Blackberry users will continue be able to use the BBM app to send peer-to-peer payments through PayPal.

(Image: PayPal)

(Image: PayPal)

"It was a difficult decision to no longer support the PayPal app on these mobile platforms, but we believe it's the right thing to ensure we are investing our resources in creating the very best experiences for our customers," Lambert wrote. "We remain committed to partnering with mobile device providers, and we apologize for any inconvenience this may cause our customers."

Starting on June 3, and going through June 30, customers using older versions of the PayPal mobile app on Google Android and Apple iOS devices will be required to upgrade to the newest version of the app.

The newest version of the app is currently supported on Android devices running OS 4.03 or greater and Apple devices running iOS 8.1 or higher, iPhone 4S or greater, iPad 2 or greater, and iPod Touch fifth generation or greater.

The latest version, announced in February, was built using an iterative platform to make it easier to customize and localize the PayPal app for the 145 markets where the app is live. It includes simplified features to make it easier to send and receive money.

In addition, a revamped home screen provides transaction details, allows users to pay pending requests, or send payments to recent contacts.

Other features include a fine-tuning Android fingerprint authentication for more devices, separation of account activity by pending and completed transactions, and quicker access to the friends who users send money most often.

[Read more about BlackBerry embracing Android.]

"As the digital payments landscape evolves, we will continue to innovate and make enhancements to PayPal's mobile experiences to give our customers the best possible ways to manage and move their money," Lambert wrote.

Those sentiments will provide little comfort to the app's users on BlackBerry, Windows Phone, and Amazon devices.

BlackBerry in particular has suffered a series of setbacks, with major app providers ending support for the platform.

In March, Facebook made the decision, along with the messaging app the company owns, WhatsApp, to discontinue support of its essential APIs for BlackBerry 10 and BBOS at the end of 2016, which means Facebook Messenger will no longer be supported on BlackBerry.

BlackBerry's handset sales figures show the operating system is already on life support, something that looks unlikely to change soon.

Company CEO John S. Chen has said numerous times that if BlackBerry can't make a profit selling hardware, it will stop selling hardware altogether -- something that seems more and more like a self-fulfilling prophecy.

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Nathan Eddy is a freelance writer for InformationWeek. He has written for Popular Mechanics, Sales & Marketing Management Magazine, FierceMarkets, and CRN, among others. In 2012 he made his first documentary film, The Absent Column. He currently lives in Berlin. View Full Bio

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Whoopty
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Whoopty,
User Rank: Ninja
5/27/2016 | 7:24:11 AM
Shame, but not surprising
It's a shame that Windows Phones haven't done better than they have, but it seems like everyone sees them as a sinking ship now. With Microsoft having sold off its feature phone division, I don't think anyone is expecting a big resurgence for the platform. 
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