For BlackBerry developers (and therefore users) the release of the BBM SDK is a much bigger deal then OS7. While the new operating system cleans up the homescreen, and includes new features based on additional hardware (such as NFC and AR) there is not much added in the new operating system for developers to add to existing apps (with the exception of location based apps).
So for developers looking to expand upon their existing app catalog, adding BBM integration is a far more attractive option. Additionally, using the BBM SDK doesn’t require users to all buy new BlackBerrys, and instead can be integrated with apps on existing devices all the way back to OS5, which covers the vast majority of in market devices.
RIM is really pushing the BBM SDK with a series of webcasts, and a Hackathon, but even before these announcements were getting many developers to spend time adding these features to their apps. None of the new options that RIM has introduced in the past few years has resulted in as much developer excitement as this SDK already has.
Twinkle was one of the first apps to add Universal Search, and Hockey Scores was one of the first to add in-app payments, however there hasn’t been as much interest in these options from other developers as there already is for the BBM SDK.