Jibi dropped some interesting news this weekend about some new features RIM is working on incorporating into the BlackBerry operating system. Let's start with my favorite (assuming it functions the way I hope it will):
BlackBerry Safe Mode: Jibi is saying the BlackBerry Javelin will ship with OS 4.6.1 and that 4.6.1 will be the first device to include Safe Mode, which can be invoked by hitting the escape key during start up. From RIM:
Your device is currently in Safe Mode. Your device starts in Safe Mode if you hold the Escape key during startup. To remain in Safe Mode, click OK. To exit Safe Mode, click Reset.
One of my BIGGEST pet peaves in the BlackBerry world is just how easy it can be to "brick" or "NUKE" (my preferred term) a BlackBerry smartphone. Install the wrong theme onto your device, or test out some alpha or beta or in some cases full-released software and you can find yourself with a BlackBerry that is stuck in a constant reboot pattern. The only fix? Reload your OS and it's a pain in the butt because your USB keeps getting detected/undetected when you connect it to the computer. [ Instructions to Fix your device if this happens are located here ]
While I hate the Microsoft-ish sound of "Safe Mode", just imagine - let's say I install a 3rd party app and it Nukes my BlackBerry, but I could then boot-up in Safe Mode (I assume Safe Mode wouldn't load any 3rd party apps) and could then uninstall the theme or app that just caused the problem. How Frak'n Sweet would that be!??! I'm not sure this ability would be part of BlackBerry Safe Mode, but I sure hope it is and I sure hope this functionality would make it's way onto all devices, including the 8xxx series.
CellData: It seems RIM is working on their own version of Google's My Location service that allows smartphones without GPS to approximately pinpoint their location on a map from cell tower information. From RIM:
Enables a BlackBerry handheld to find its location without a GPS. It works by identifying and locating nearby cell towers, so it will not work out of coverage or where the system does not yet know about a cell.
BlackBerry Game Service: All devices running OS4.6 will include a multiplayer gaming platform called the BlackBerry Gaming Service. From RIM:
Enables multiplayer games on BlackBerry.
You have received an invitation to play <insert game title here> on your BlackBerry. Click the <insert game title here> icon on your BlackBerry to play. If you do not have this game installed on your device, you must install it before you can accept this invitation.
Jibi is not sure if this will be an open platform, closed platform (only for Plazmic games), or just be open to the bigger players in the industry (Magmic).
[ Source ]