Shortcuts play a pivotal role in my daily commute. When you're standing on a train platform with a three foot gap it's usually not a good idea to be handling your BlackBerry. Quickly accessing various functions is a must. When the topic of apps clogging up the BlackBerry system menu came up on twitter awhile back I couldn't help but think how lost I would be without them. Call me crazy but how else am I going to access FixmoTools, add an Easy Smiley to a BBM, or take a screen shot? I say bring on the loaded menu screen. If it ever gets too much then maybe just maybe I'll trim them back a little.
From Bach Khao University the developer behind BlackBerry One-Click Installer (BBOCI), comes Menux v1.0. Menux is an easy to use application that allows you to add shortcuts to your BlackBerry menu which can be accessed from any screen or app. For a commuter like me this is perfect for making a quick call, SMS, or Email with just a click of a button.
To answer that burning question on everyone's mind, yes it brings to mind other shortcut apps (e.g., QuickLaunch). However, Menux operates differently from the rest. While other applications may launch as independent popup menus, Menux creates shortcuts directly within the BlackBerry system menu. To be honest, I use QL more for screenshots and device reboots. I prefer using my BB menu and App Switcher for everything else. So for me this fits in nicely with my routine.
Navigating the interface
Menux comes with a sharp, clear, and easy to navigate interface. There's no absolutely no fumbling through difficult menus. Everything you need is right there in front of you. Instructions are clearly laid out under each one and there's even a convenient help button for quick tips. As a warning, in order to add a new shortcut you'll have to remove the old one first.
FeaturesAdd Time item - view the time and watch the seconds go by. Right now it only appears in 24-hr format. If you're like me and always flipping to the homescreen to check the time you'll definitely appreciate this one.
Add applications monitor item - see how many apps are running, including those in the background. You can see the total number or click to launch a list of the actual apps currently in use. Thanks to a forum suggestion, the developer is currently working on sorting by Core and 3rd Party Apps. The update should be out by the time of this post.
Add Call/SMS/Email item - fill in the appropriate contact fields to add a contact to your menu. You'll have to enter in the information manually as there is no ability to access the contact list yet.
Add Boost memory item - this little doodad will boost memory by wiping the event log and clearing what the developer calls "waste java objects." It even displays how much when finished. In my book you can never go wrong with freeing up memory.
- Easy to access, navigate and input entries
- Add a symbol or icon next to each menu item
- No device reboot required to operate
- Negligible impact on device memory (87.3 KB)
- Seamless integration with BlackBerry menu
- Battery pull erases entries
- Cannot backup to SD card
- SMS shortcut fails to launch the compose screen on some OS 6 devices
Menux is a great little application for those times when you need to text, email, or call those you communicate with the most while on the go. I really love being able to add shortcuts to the system menu even with the issues discussed above. The one thing I hope will be added in the next update is that I can customize the menu with more than one of each feature. Until then, I'm really looking forward to what the developer will add in future versions.
Contest: We have 50 copies of Menux to give away. Just leave a comment on this post to enter. Contest ends Sunday at midnight PST.