Some Great Free & Paid Blackberry Applications!'s BlackBerry 101 Lecture Series
By Adam Zeis on 27 Aug 2008 12:54 pm EDT

When you first get rolling with your new Blackberry device, you will most certainly be in pursuit of the best new applications. You will most likely seek out the free ones first (yes there are many great apps you don't even have to pay for) and then if you have the need, you will look for the best paid applications to suit your needs.  In this 101 we will go over a small sampling of some of what I consider to be the best free and paid applications currently available for BlackBerry Smartphones.

Those Wonderful Free Apps Desktop Launcher Desktop Launcher

I can't start off a CrackBerry 101 about free apps without throwing in a shoutout to own own Desktop Launcher.  This app will throw a Crackberry icon right on the homescreen of your device allowing you quick access to the WAP forums, blogs, store and more.  No Berry should be without.  Get the desktop launcher by visiting or on your BlackBerry's web browser.




Viigo is a totally free RSS reader for Blackberry devices.  Among all the apps I have installed on my Curve - this is by far the one I use most.  I can't wait to get up each day and check out all my feeds.  Local news, World news, weather, sports scores, tech blogs - you name it.  I have them all stored in one convenient place.  Viggo is sleek and easy to use.  There is nothing new to learn before you start - its as simple as reading your email.  You can add feeds through Viigo, or custom feeds via web addresses.  You can customize the amount of articles it holds as once, and even the update interval.  This is by far the one free application you should not overlook.  Get the Viigo edition here.

Google Maps


Google Map

Perhaps one of my most visited sites from my laptop, Google Maps Mobile puts the power of Google Maps on your Berry.  It's location based services work on both GPS enabled devices, and those without GPS (via tower triangulation).  Google Maps can provide you with "My Location" which will pinpoint your location within 1000m.  You can look up driving directions, transit maps, traffic, business listings and more.  If you are a user who is constantly on the go (and even if you're note), Google Maps is another great totally free app for all devices. Get Google Maps now.

Beyond 411


Beyond 411 is a local search tool that no Berry should be without.  The main feature which you should expect to get the most use out of is the Yellow Pages search.  Easily find local businesses, complete with address, phone number and distance info.  Beyond 411 can also provide driving directions and other information for GPS devices.  You an do other actions like web searches and get weather, movie times, sports info and more.  A great tool that in my opinion is quicker and easier than firing up the browser each time you need some quick information.  To download Beyond 411 OTA, go to on your mobile browser.

Facebook App for Blackberry


This is one that caters to certain users.  If you aren't a Facebook user, then you obvisouly don't need this application (but if you're like my sister you may install it and stem a new addiction!).  The Facebook App for Blackberry makes some of the common Facebook tasks (sending messages, writing on a wall, viewing status updates etc.) much easier.  The application essentially "intercepts" any Facebook emails coming to your device, and notifies you as such through the application.  It just makes using Facebook on the go that much better. My favorite feature is the ability to upload photos directly from your device to any of your Facebook albums (or even create a new one).  If you are a Facebook user this one is definitely a must have.  To install the Facebook app, head to

Best Paid Apps That Are Worth The Money

JiveTalk Mobile IM


Perhaps one of the most popular 3rd party apps is BeeJive's JiveTalkJiveTalk integrates all your IM clients (AIM, GTalk, Yahoo!, Myspace, MSN, ICQ, Jabber) into one easy to use interface.  It allows you to add multiple accounts, customize the look and alerts and much more.  To some this one is a tough sell since for most carriers you can download the individual IM applications for free, but if you are a heavy IM user and need to have all your clients in one organzied place, then JiveTalk is the way to go.  A Device License is avaiable for $19.99 which allows use for only one device.  Since you most likely won't stick with the same device forever, if you're smart however, there is also a User License for $29.99 which is transferable over multiple devices. Head over to to check it out - a free 30-day trial is also available.

BBSmart Alarms Pro


This is one of those applications that I don't think I could get by without.  The default alarm application isn't all that.  It is extremely limiting and for most power users, doesn't quite cut it.  To solve this oversight, BBSmart Alarms Pro comes to the rescue.  This simple alarm app is totaly customizable.  Unlike the native app, Alarms Pro allows you to add multiple alarms, quick alarms, custom alert tones and more.  It even has a snooze button!  This has quickly become one of my favorites and is well worth the premium $15.00 pricetag.  Grab it from the Store.  



Flipside is a great MP3 player for Blackberry devices.  It organizes all your media files and has a great cover flow to scroll through your albums.  Its quick and straight forward.  Flipside will find your music stored on the device or media card and import it into the program.  From there, you can download cover art and you're good to go.  The usual options are there - shuffle album, shuffle all, skip etc.  At $19.95 the price may be a bit steep for some, but if you plan on using your Blackberry as your main media player, you can't go wrong with this one.  Check out Flipside at

Worldmate Live



For users on the go, there is perhaps no better application than Worldmate Live.  This one piece of software will keep you up to date an organzied with all your travel plans and itineraries.  Worldmate Live can sync your hotel, flight and rental car info - as well as meetings and other information.  It provides real time flight information, delays and cancellations.  Worldmate Live also gives you updated world maps, clocks and weather forecasts.  If you are a business traveler, this one piece of software will simplify everything you do regarding your travel - its as easy as that.  There is a free version that has limited features, but the paid or "Gold" version is the way to go to get the most out of it.  The price is a steep $99.95 for a year of use - but if you travel a lot it will easily pay for itself in no time.  Learn more at

Honorable Mentions

These applications are definitely fun to have, but I don't really consider them necessities.  They do deserve a mention however.

Flickr App For Blackberry - If you use Flickr user, this little app lets you upload photos straight from your device to your Flickr account.  It lets you choose an existing album or create a new one, tag photos and more.  

Opera Mini - An alternative (and sometimes preferred) to the default mobile browser, Opera Mini lets you view complete web pages as they would be seen on a PC.  Opera will not rough up the pages like the mobile browser sometimes tends to do.  

Gmail App - For Gmail users, this application lets you view your inbox and do more than you can with the default Blackberry message app.  You can add stars, archive, search and more.  The updated verison supports multiple accounts as well.

Twitterberry - For Twittering on the go - this is an alternative to email or SMS for updating your Twitter feed.  Check out your timelines and update your own.  

BBSmart Email Viewer & Empower Pro Email Viewer - A few months back, these two would have been on the top of my list.  However since OS 4.5 and its HTML email capability has popped up, it seems that these two may soon be left behind.  In older OS version, these viewers would format your emails and clean up links to make them more user firendly.  Now, OS 4.5 will take over and get the job done on its own. 

Discover More Apps and Discuss your favorites in these Forum threads:

Have some favorites you'd like to share? Post them in the comments!
Adam Zeis Adam Zeis "Mobile Nations Content Strategist" 3740 (articles) 2892 (forum posts)

Reader comments

Some Great Free & Paid Blackberry Applications!


I personally feel this info is great...

Did you happen to notice the numerous links to threads on the forums?? Those threads alone are filled with tons and tons of great app suggestions. To list them all here within the "Lecture" would be madness!!

Overall, I agree with the apps listed... and I think it is a great Lecture

Good info for us newbies...I would like to know where I might be able to get the bulletin board type theme up at the top??? I would love to have it for my phone :)

Very very true!! Those apps should make the list!! :)

I personally love qSMS... and SoftReset for Pearl users is a must-have!

hey please let me know is flip side mp3 player good i have 600 songs on my blackberry media card is it worth the money

Personally, I like MiuTunes over FlipSide. I tried FlipSide, but the MiuTunes interface is much better, smooth scrolling, and shortcut keys make it so much easier to use (e.g. create a playlist on the fly).
I believe it's pricier than FlipSide, but certainly worth the money. Since I started using MiuTunes with my bluetooth headset (Motorola S9), especially in my commute into NY, I've kept my iPod in the car.

You missed a few good free ones.

The first one that comes to mind, especially for Canadian users, is Poynt (Beta). It's a snazzy Beyond 411, Windows Live Search'ish app that does yellow page searching, movie time and listings and directions. You have the option of setting it up to use Blackberry maps or Google maps. The main reason to use it over Beyond 411 is the GPS location search actually works for CDMA users (which I haven't been able to get working with Beyond 411).
Get it at

Another one is MaraTick. A very handy to do/shopping list application and is quite impressive considering it's free. It has list completion indicators, allows you to move items in your list to group them, automatically moves completed items to the bottom of the list when completed, and more. Probably the best feature is the built in dictionary which autocompletes entries and is self learning.
Definitely worth a look to keep yourself organized:

Don't want to spend the cash on the alarms pro or won't use it enough to warrant parting with your hard earned dough? Check out MyAlarm. Has a lot of the same functionality with a better price tag- FREE.

And how about weather app's!? Completely left out here. Weathereye from the weathernetwork (love it), and I know there are others, bbWeather, etc...

One item missing from your article is a good Password and Personal Information Manager. I use Ascendo Datavault, but I am sure there are other good ones out there. I use it everyday, and I would be lost without it.

For anyone that is serious about improving their productivity, ToDoMatrix by REXwireless is absolutely the best tasks manager ever created for a wireless device (and I have had every wireless device since the Newton). First impression might be "a bit expensive and complicated" but anyone that gives it a good try will discover an app that they will never outgrow. ToDoMatrix is my most used BlackBerry application after e-mail. Simply can't live without it.

Here's the link:


anyone know how to add the today application where you can see the next few items on your calendar on your home screen??

anyone know how to add the today application where you can see the next few items on your calendar on your home screen??

anyone know how to add the today application where you can see the next few items on your calendar on your home screen??

Yup,that would be me. Just got my BB last Saturday after having no intention of ever buying a smart phone (I don't do the data service). Since I have, I'd like to make it function as much as possible as my beloved Sony Clie (PDA). Thank you for the link to the free shopper application. I was hoping to find one.


My browser seems slow: using both BB Internet Service and T Mobile browser.

Will adding Opera Mini help?

damn, thank god for crackberry!! just bought my new storm, love it! like many otheres, i needed a site like this.

damn, thank god for crackberry!! just bought my new storm, love it! like many otheres, i needed a site like this.

i just downloaded the google maps on my storm, it said "succesfully downloaded" but i cant find it on my desktop or my "downloads" lol i'm new to this can anyone help?