The BlackBerry application storefront is now accepting submissions from developers in a countdown to the spring launch of the store.

Obviously for developers this means they can be first in line to submit applications they've designed for BlackBerry smartphones, but for consumers it means BlackBerry owners don't have much longer to wait until the apps will be available.

RIM says "the storefront will be an ideal spot for developers to bring their applications - whether they are consumer-focused or targeted to business users".

The smartphone maker says the market for BlackBerry applications "is growing at a phenomenal rate".

Apple, Palm, Nokia and Google (for the Android platform) already offer online application stores for consumers.