BTSidekick for BlackBerry

By Ryan Blundell on 30 Jul 2009 12:10 pm EDT
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BTsidekick


We have our family vacation coming up and we're pretty excited about it. I may even be able to bring my BlackBerry with me! Despite having my Bold practically velcroed to my hands, I'll have no problems setting it down and hitting the beach. My wife and I are the kind of people who make sure we plan for everything; food, supplies, games-you name it we plan it. The one thing we don't think of, is figuring out where potentially necessary hotels, banks and such are located in a town we've never been to. We don't want to end up skimming through the yellow pages or driving around dividing our attention between store-front signs and the street.

BTSidekick is one of the many applications out there that will help you, as they say, "find the things you need while on the move". It offers quick access to various businesses located near you, all categorized for convenience. It takes 411, and the map that is probably plastered across your dash, out of the equation and puts rapid, easy searches in your hands. Of course, you should make sure you concentrate on the road, not the screen - pull over to conduct your search. Read on for more information!

About BTSidekick

BTSidekick is powered by CPSA (Canadian Professional Sales Association), based out of Toronto. It's currently in beta (version1.0.1) and is available on the following BlackBerry smartphones, running OS 4.2 or higher; Bold, Curve, Curve 8900, 88xx, Pearl and Pearl Flip. There's no word yet as to when other models will see some support. CPSA also offers a TravelSave program, which helps save you money on hotel, car rentals, insurance and more. I'm not a member, so I don't know the exact savings. Pretty sneaky to have a travel app AND a travel program, no?

The application uses both GPS and cellular triangulation to detect where you are, making it available for non GPS-enabled BlackBerrys. Using BTSidekick is pretty straight forward. The top border of the menu will show the time, selected action and location. The left border of the application houses your main functions. From top to bottom they are;

Nearby: You location is automatically detected by "powerful location detection and scanning technology".

Select Location: You can set your location by Postal/Zip Code or by Address/City & Country. BTSidekick provides coverage in over 20 countries.

Settings: Not much here, except for switching the unit of measurement from metric to imperial and access to the CPSA Savings Program.

Share: Send an email about BTSidekick to a contact of your choice. For this, it also offers quick access to your address book as well.

About: Basic information about BTSidekick

BTSnear
find the closest place to eat
BTSmap
choose a location

Searches are automatically organized by category, allowing you to search for hotels, movie theatres, post offices and more. If you can find what you are looking for, they've included an "Absolutely Anything Else" section where you can manually enter what you need. Search results can be viewed by list (closest entry listed at the top) or via Google Maps. Each entry lists the entry's name, category, address and phone number. Some entries are adorned by the CPSA logo, which will indicate their membership rate at that location. After you decide where you want to go, you can use the "Driving Directions" feature to view the turn by turn directions.

BTSfound
entry detail

BTSmapview
Map View

BTSturn

turn by turn directions

Conclusion

While I was impressed by the quick nearby search options and ease of use, I preferred using Poynt, as it offers much more functionality. I enjoy watching trailers, having mapping choices and searching using White Pages. For those who want a simple, yet powerful application, without the advanced features, then BTSidekick is for you. The application is free and can be picked up by heading to BlackBerry App World. Now quiet down back there! Don't make me turn this car around!

Pros

  • functions are easy to master
  • View nearest location, maps and turn by turn instructions
  • View savings for CPSA members

Cons

  • Missing advanced functions that some users may need

Topics: News & Rumors

Reader comments

BTSidekick for BlackBerry

28 Comments

Everytime I see or try one of these apps out...Like Where or poynt or whatever, I think what does this do that google maps doesn't do? Some have weather or sports built in but I already have apps for those things. As far as location type apps alone, I've never replaced google maps. Its the only one you need as far as finding restaurants, banks, etc etc....Am I wrong?

I just returned, yesterday, from my Hollywood, Florida, beach vacation. Stayed on the boardwalk, deep sea fished for tile fish and king fish. We snagged a 3 1/2 foot barracuda and my 4 year old even caught two puffer fish from the pier before we embarked on our three-hour trip.
The Curve did a great job documenting the vacation via Twitter, emails, video and pics.
Father-in-law's Storm even caught me and the boy, sleeping off seasickness. And to to think, I was a submariner once upon a time!
Slacker Radio and iheartradio kept me company on my morning boardwalk jogs.
For me, every vacation is a working vacation and the Curve got me through a timeshare condo that lacked adequate wi-fi access.

People love these things, and as long as they're a popular download, companies will continue to produce them. I agree with you that we have more than enough...

I downloaded Poynt many months ago and have seen no reason to use anything else.

Long Live Google Maps.........They Could Use another Update right about now Tho.... as Far As new Features goes!!

I agree with LLGM. If I could have 5 customizable buttons on Google Maps on the searchs I do the most (the history feature works but I use google way too much it seems) that would be great and I wouldn't need any other app.

Oh hey look....another "POYNTLESS" app that, despite having seen countless times before, people are still getting excited for. Thumbs up to the ones frowning at this one....even bigger thumbs to the ones questioning its importance. Before any happy go lucky people decide to respond in kind they first need to compare and contrast. While all the other ones are releasing killer "USEFUL" apps, we have no choice but to revel in constant repetativeness.

1- Doesn't show distance to places. I dont know how it orders places. Should be from nearer one to farther away.
2- Selected movies theater, gave me Lenskrafter as a movie theater.
3- Selected airport parking, gave me 2 private addresses. Hope those people don't mind if I park at their house for free...
4- Rent a car, gave me dealers
5- Restaurants gave me a tanning saloon.

i love this line in the description, "powerful location detection and scanning technology". made me chuckle. :)

not even close...the local bar takes me to a baskin robbins inside of a local mall.

Has potential since its powered by google maps but ima stick to the original, google maps and poynt

You shoould make all these apps available for all blackberries, not certon ones or just the ones you got. Just make it available for the storm and every berry out there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

A Storm version will be available in September. Any new blackberries such as the Tour will allow for backwards compatibility with BTSidekick.