Action now has a symbol, but does the symbol have a name?

The BlackBerry....
By Kevin Michaluk on 13 Aug 2012 12:59 pm EDT

Do you have a better name for this symbol than the BlackBerry "splat"? Leave a comment with your suggestion and you could win a sweet prize!

If you're a BlackBerry user, you know the symbol in the image above. It's the graphic layered on top of application icons on the the BlackBerry homescreen, letting you know new messages have arrived in those apps.

For BlackBerry users, it's a powerful symbol. When you see it, it's hard to avoid clicking on it. You just have to take action and check what messages have come your way. But what's the name of this BlackBerry symbol?

Throughout the world... throughout history... powerful symbols typically have names associated with them. It only makes sense that this symbol for BlackBerry be given a proper name. This is especially true considering we are seeing the symbol show up in BlackBerry advertising. In India, BlackBerry launched a new Action Starts Here marketing campaign that puts a lot of emphasis on this symbol. 

Unofficially, I know Research In Motion employees have historically referred to this symbol as the "splat". Splat is definitely descriptive and fits with the basic look of the graphic (see google image search). It's also fitting given that it's typically splat on top of other icons. But... there's just something about the word splat that comes across as less than ideal for the name of a powerful symbol that represents Action. So I think it's time CrackBerry Nation weigh in with some suggestions as to what this symbol should be referred to as.

Question of the Week: What would you call the symbol in the image above? Leave a comment with your suggestions! We'll do a follow up post soon with our favorites and give away a sweet prize to our favorite of the bunch! 

Reader comments

Action now has a symbol, but does the symbol have a name?



Sorry to hijack the first post, but when I work at RIM everyone there called it "the tomato" because it looks like a tomato from the top...not all that much better than "splat" haha

I've heard other people call it a tomato, but not a fan... at all. Anytime I get a notification at home, the GF says my phone "bling'd" or "bong'd". As I started typing this, I thought a "bling" would be ok, but it's probably too close to M$'s Bing search. "Bong" might work, but that may not be a very smart move, politically.

How about the Bing...vs. Ping (or is it too close)?

"Wait one second, I just got Binged"

BlackBerry Ping,
Re(:), (or as in Regardez)

Of course,

Just to name a few...

+1 for the "Aster"

To throw my two cents in lets get a little retro and say for

the longer version call it the "Blaster Aster".

If you've owned the first Nintendo then you'll know where I'm

going with this bit of geekness.

"Burp" for BlackBerry Urgent Response Posted. Need a good Burp sound effect to announce new Burp arrivals. You then say, Another Burping Notification. All Burp audio files welcome.;)

Summers, Michigan
Winters, Florida
HTC EVO 4G, Flyer, iPhone 3gs & iPad2

How about the BlackBerry Noti, or just a Noti (pronounced No-tee) short for notification. simple, catchy, "hey! did you get that noti?"

I love that! That's one of the issues that's plaguing RIM; lack of marketability. Everything from Apple is brandable(?). From top to bottom, inside and out. WTF is a splat?? Really?

I know that comparing RIM to Apple will get me crucified among the BlackBerry purists... but you cannot deny the fact that Apple has done SOMETHING right in terms of branding to become the most successful company in the world!

I think that it's simple and catchy enough to work. Plus I can see it being used my RIM people and developers. For example, at a BBJAMs event in the future : "Easily add a noti to your apps to keep your users informed and enganged".

the only downside to this "term" is that the word "No" appears in it, giving off a negative connotation. Someone way down the thread mentionned Do-Dot but now I can't find that post anymore... That's a clever name that ties into the BlackBerry people Do slogan...

That sounds too close to "naughty" lol.... Besides I think they should use something with one syllable... Maybe splash?

You get my +1 for the "Noti" and mainly because of the fact, as mentioned earlier, it-is marketable.

RIM needs that more than anything right about now.

Speaking from top to bottom lets get rid of RIM (you have now idea what goes through my head everytime I say that) and just wipe the slate clean making BlackBerry everything (all-Black-everything)!

'Burst' as in star-burst, or burst of energy or burst of activity.
BlackBerry Burst has a nice sound to it.

Two Cents spent.

call it the BlackBerry Crack! whenever you see it, you gotta take action and check it. Thats what makes us Crackberry users and abusers right? ; )

Lol i have always called that little icon my "look, quick!" button... Every time I see it, i have to look quick at what it is, even in AP and stuff

I've always called it "the little red thing" or the "star dot." I like Star Dot because that's what it looks like. A Star... in a Dot. And people with BlackBerrys always know what I'm talking about, so I guess it works.

I like this. And it makes sense in the "computer networking, roundtrip message" kind of communications sense.

I was thinking the "Yo". It's something that is simple and makes sense with a little cool factor thrown into the mix.


Latin for new, as in new messages or new information.

Also fitting for how the BlackBerry Platform is about to go Super Nova and blow away its competitors and its starburst-like shape.

I like Squid. I don't know why. It makes no sense. It has 5 "arms", not 8. But when I look at it, my brain says, Squid. Try saying it to yourself a few times. You might agree!

PS: I also like Splat

I'm not very creative in general but right off I thought of "ActSterisk." So you might still say I'm not very creative...

Ari: Attention/Action Required Indicator :) or combined Bari: BlackBerry Attention/Action Required Indicator :)

5 sections, relates to an orange pip (seed)
tons of famous literary characters (Dickens, Melville, Tolkien)

So simple, so true.. I like it
Make that two votes for BlackBerry Star, but I also liked "noticon" mentioned above as a solid second choice.

Hmmmmm. Weird. I never really thought about it.

I just call it notification symbol like someone says above.

/Device agnosticism or bust!

Well, I see it as a visual telephone ring, or a knock at the door to let you know you're receiving something, mail, updates or some other opportunity. Since "Action" is the correct response to "Opportunity", then this symbol is "opportunity knocking", so I like the "knocker"!

It should have that bit of a fun edge to it. "oh, just got a knock up my girl friend and see if I can go for a pint!" or "Be with you shortly, just checking who knocking me up." Anything that is fun! It can be quite serious too, but whatever it gets called it has to be comfortable in conversation.

I like the idea of using this splat, it's cool and has great potential.

Why not just call it the "Action" icon. When you see it, you take action. Or when you see it, that means action is required. The BlackBerry Action.

Probably not bad... Just action.... "hey hold on a second, I need to check my bbm I got an action" lol

I'd go with the BlackBerry Beacon. It's another word for star, yet its meaning symbolizes something on the horizon, something yet to come. Sounds fitting, I think.

Damnnnn. Im too late... "BB Bling" sounds catchy.
Ill go with
"BB Blimp"
"BB HINT" Having Instant Notifications To The Tee.

keep it simple and to the point kind of like BIS, cal it BAS " Berry Alert Symbol" Nothing fancy but it clearly identifies what it is, keeps it relevant and easy to remember.

I would call it a 'gotu,' as in, "I have 'gotu' on my blackberry apps. It must be an update on one of my apps."

How about BlackBerry Action Symbol?? Then when you're talking with someone, and you get your BlackBerry Action Symbol, you can say hold on, I'm getting some BlackBerry Action.. And then you can tend to your phone. Ahh I'm getting some BlackBerry Action... Has a nice ring to it doesn't it??

BlackBerry Action Symbol *BAS* goes so well along with BIS, BES, BBM ... maybe others that don't ring a bell now ...

I always thought, and have always called it, the BlackBerry Asterisk. Why make things complicated?

"Action Item", as in Fight Club, where the boss is talking to Tyler (well, to his mild mannered alter-ego):

Narrator: Do you want me to deprioritize my current reports until you advise me of a status upgrade?
Boss: Yes. Make these your primary action items.

I kinda like:

theBBerry (after all it looks like a red berry)


aCComplish (goes with action)

To me it's always been the Blinking Star - coz its arrival (ie the star's arrival) makes my BB's LED blink. Maybe the BB Blink is best for short.

A Blackberry Lover & User of a Playbook & Torch9800!!

"Action Star" or "Action Mark"

For example: When you see the Action Star above your message folder, it means you have an unread message--take action!

Focus (foci, plural). After all, it/they draw your attention when you see them on the device, i.e. focal point. Plus Thor said RIM is laser "focused" on building the best platform.

But, I like Nova too. Maybe even Nota (kind of a combo of nova and notification).

I am almost positive that it is already called the focus icon. If I remember correctly by what the icons in the theme builder were called... At least I think so. I do like that term for it. Splat is a fun laymans term for it, but for marketing level nomenclature, not so much.

Well, I did not know that, cool. So there you go Kevin it already has a name besides "splat". Obviously I cannot/will not claim credit for "focus".

Reading through some of the others I also like Spark (goes with the fire and rising of the pheonix thing) and sparks you into action.

Lots about action, BBact etc. those are good. I'll add one to that, how about ReAct or ReActS. For every action there is an equal reaction (plus cold be short for "red action star", I know bad, but hey).

since my suggestion was splattered i will try again.
call it the "Kickass Crackberry Prize Notification Symbol".

What about RAS... For Rapid Action Star wich is meant for the user who uses email. instant messagin apps like our (bbm, whatsapp, etc...) and also social media apps like twitter, Facebook or instagram in BB10 so fast that even the quickest iOS or Android user couldn't catch up!

RAS is already widely used in the network community - Remote Access Server. I believe it may even be trademarked by Microsoft.

It's a "Snowflake in the Sun".

It's something URGENT - get to it quick - before it MELTS!! And RIM being Canadian certainly is a dead giveaway, that it's a snowflake :)

I like "Blackberry APT"
Apt: keenly intelligent and responsive
It's short, to the point, and has a great meaning
It is an adjective but I'm sure we can all turn it into a noun

LOL... I only like that if everyone is required to sign a contract that they must always say "Get Over Here" in the Scorpion voice.

The mailman.

He looks like a little man (a stick man or the inukshuk from the 2010 Olympics) and when he shows up he is delivering mail/messages.

"How about the BlackBerry Noti, or just a Noti (pronounced No-tee) short for notification. simple, catchy, "hey! did you get that noti?""

""Notification" symbol. Isn't that what it actually is?"

Combine these two:

Noti + Icon = Noticon

The first thing I thought of for "noticon" was a third faction of Transformers. I know, I'm a dork, but it would make for some pretty cool commercials and sponsorship for when/if they make another movie...

Just call it a Berry or Berri.

"I sent you a message today, did you get it?"


"Does you mail not have a berri on it?"

BlackBerry Core

BlackBerry is all about connectivity, thats its Core purpose, so it shows you when someone or something is trying to connect to you!

BlackBerry Core

Red Alert:

Like the famous 80's hip hop DJ.


Like those old school fitted hats.

Kick STARt:

Like a motorcycle.

I gots nuthin.


in the time of your life, live so that in that good time, there should be no ugliness or death for yourself or for any life that your life touches, seek goodness everywhere

First thing I thought was "Tomato". But since I am a Canuck living in the South, more appropriately, " red 'mater " makes sense to me.

Round Tuit or just Tuit (pronounced two it). It tells you that there is something important and you have to get 'a round Tuit'.

This symbol should be called the 'BB Check' symbol - here's why:

BlackBerry: Check It!

That should be the new slogan for RIM in NA. Nevermind the 'action'...

Keep it simple - quasi-Nike feel to it - but to the point and something that BlackBerry users already do all the time anyway - they check it. they check it to work. they check it to play. they check it for comfort...

The slogan encourages use of the product, can be incorporated into the new NFC communications capabilities - as in 'checking out' your products at retail locations using nfc; could be used to re-introduce people back to the BB platform - BB 10: CHECK IT;

and heck - while we're at it? New name for BBM on BB10 or a new feature...... CheckMate.


Two suggestions:

1. It kinda looks like a "RIM" with spokes so maybe call it A Spoke or similar. The spokes keep my day rollin!

2. It could also be a little long-necked person that takes care of all our biz so we don't have to...the previous suggestion of "Noti" would be a great name for the little guys..."Noobs" also rings true

but if i've got a choose one from above - Torx. I like that... would be a good name for a new BB10 device.... BB TORX.

How about the BIN ( Blackberry information notice ). I'm always checking the BIN. bin there and done that.