RIM's VP of Developer Relations Alec Saunders has taken to the BlackBerry Developer Blog to comment on reports that the company would remove the ability to sideload PlayBook apps. A few days ago Saunders tweeted that "we're removing sideloading for consumers," but now says that the company is not, in fact, getting rid of sideloading, and laments how Twitter's 140-character limit "doesn't allow for nuance." However, sideloading fans probably shouldn't celebrate just yet — RIM also got in touch with us to say that the feature's future is still under consideration.
We are looking at different options including removal or evolution of our current side loading functionality. In the event that we do decide to go down that path, we will definitely work with developers to ensure we have a fully functioning way for them to test applications on hardware. However, we haven't finalized or officially announced any plans yet.
The purported move was said to be a reaction against piracy, with Saunders previously saying that he didn't want BlackBerry App World to turn into a "chaotic cesspool" like Google Play for Android, and RIM is indeed planning a countermeasure for illegally downloaded apps. The next release of PlayBook OS will add encryption to apps so that they're only able to be run by the user that purchased them.