RIM unveils BlackBerry Tag-coming soon to BlackBerry Smartphones

By Bla1ze on 10 Oct 2011 03:37 am EDT

Research In Motion

Press Release

BlackBerry Tag enables effortless 'tap to share' exchanges of multimedia content and contact info between friends

Friends can also add each other as BBM contacts with a simple 'tap'

DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES--(Marketwire - Oct. 10, 2011) - GITEX – During his keynote presentation at the GITEX conference in Dubai, Research In Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM)(TSX:RIM) Co-CEO Jim Balsillie today unveiled a new way for BlackBerry® smartphone users to connect with one another and share multimedia content.

BlackBerry® Tag, which will be incorporated in the next BlackBerry® 7 OS update*, will allow users to share contact information, documents, URLs, photos and other multimedia content by simply tapping their BlackBerry smartphones together. BlackBerry Tag will also enable friends to instantly add one another as contacts on BBM™ (BlackBerry® Messenger).

"BlackBerry Tag is an exciting and innovative feature that makes sharing contact information and multimedia content effortless and seamless," said Jim Balsillie, Co-CEO at Research In Motion. "BlackBerry Tag opens a new dimension to the BlackBerry platform that is powerful, simple and intuitive and we think it will be welcomed by both users and developers."

BlackBerry Tag takes advantage of Near Field Communications (NFC) technology included in the recently launched BlackBerry® Bold™ 9900/9930 and BlackBerry® Curve™ 9350/9360/9370 smartphones, and these are the first BlackBerry smartphones that will support BlackBerry Tag.

RIM also announced plans to expose BlackBerry Tag through APIs on the BlackBerry platform, allowing software developers to take advantage of "tap to share" functionality from within their own applications.

* Subject to network operator certifications. Check with your local operator for availability.

About Research In Motion

Research In Motion (RIM), a global leader in wireless innovation, revolutionized the mobile industry with the introduction of the BlackBerry® solution in 1999. Today, BlackBerry products and services are used by millions of customers around the world to stay connected to the people and content that matter most throughout their day. Founded in 1984 and based in Waterloo, Ontario, RIM operates offices in North America, Europe, Asia Pacific and Latin America. RIM is listed on the NASDAQ Stock Market (NASDAQ:RIMM) and the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX:RIM). For more information, visit www.rim.com or www.blackberry.com.

Forward-looking statements in this news release are made pursuant to the "safe harbor" provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and applicable Canadian securities laws. When used herein, words such as "expect", "anticipate", "estimate", "may", "will", "should", "intend," "believe", and similar expressions, are intended to identify forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are based on estimates and assumptions made by RIM in light of its experience and its perception of historical trends, current conditions and expected future developments, as well as other factors that RIM believes are appropriate in the circumstances. Many factors could cause RIM's actual results, performance or achievements to differ materially from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements, including those described in the "Risk Factors" section of RIM's Annual Information Form, which is included in its Annual Report on Form 40-F (copies of which filings may be obtained at www.sedar.com or www.sec.gov). These factors should be considered carefully, and readers should not place undue reliance on RIM's forward-looking statements. RIM has no intention and undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.

The BlackBerry and RIM families of related marks, images and symbols are the exclusive properties and trademarks of Research In Motion Limited. RIM, Research In Motion and BlackBerry are registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and may be pending or registered in other countries. All other brands, product names, company names, trademarks and service marks are the properties of their respective owners. RIM assumes no obligations or liability and makes no representation, warranty, endorsement or guarantee in relation to any aspect of any third party products or services.

Reader comments

RIM unveils BlackBerry Tag-coming soon to BlackBerry Smartphones


How does RIM realease a brand new phone (9850/9860) and not include NFC when they clearly had plans for features like these? These are exactly the phones that should have these features; on a multi-media geared ph. So now, when a new Curve or 9900 comes along, i have to say, sorry my new BB cant handle that new feature. RIM; kinda makes you scratch your head.

+2. Seriously, RIM...if you had this service planned ahead, why would you not equip ALL your BB7 phones with NFC chips? This is a good example why many people consider RIM to be incompetent....Just stupid.

Does anyone know how fast the trasfer rate is on NFC. Cuz I'm not sure if it would really benefit for music and such. And I can send pics now withotu being "near" someone.

Its most likely going to be transferred over Bluetooth, but it will be tap (NFC) to set up the Bluetooth session transparently and much easier.

Is this somehow DLNA related, or instead, does it mean that they've focused on RFC rather than "multimedia home share" ?
(ok, could be none of both :-))

I think is more file transfer, not really sharing in the way DLNA is intended to be. See NFC as ad-hoc full copy of media, DLNA as more home based sharing, streaming and viewing of media.

Didn't Apple have something like this on their phones a while back. I don't know if it was able to share as much as this will be able to. I know people were excited about it for a while but it died off. Seems like a cool idea. Not too sure how much I would use it though.

You know, I was thinking the same thing. Although I think it will be a great addition to the platform, I kind of expect this to become a RIM vs. Apple lawsuit. More than likely an IP infringement. Hopefully it doesn't, kind of sick of the whole "heh, that was my idea" wars. I would love to get this capability. Shows that RIM is trying. On that note, I hope this incorporates game sharing/pairing. Start a chess match with a "Tap". The games have been getting a lot better with OS 7. Not that I focus on games over work :)

Apple has an app called bump-it which through bluetooth enables a file transfer session. RIM is avoiding a legal battle by initiating the transfer through NFC. Either way, cool feature but not that innovative. And like someone said above, it's very confusing to see this feature now when half the new devices dont even have nfc... hmmmm

Killer feature. Barcodes for BBM were fast, but this is much better. If you could have a completely hands off implementation (e.g. as soon as you touch another NFC blackberry without any sort of dialog boxes or user intervention the contacts are added to your BBM) this would be even better, though for security reasons that feature probably will never be.

Ok, Cool idea and all but it will only work on 2 phones. Bold Touch and Curve Touch.. How will they advertise this?

pretty cool, but wojld be better if it were cross platform. in the us the number of bb users to share with are dwindling. i applaude the efforts but needs to be cross platform.

It's taking it to the level where it should be. A level where HP never took it. With Touch to Share you can only share an URL and nothing else.

Isn't this like the free app called "Bump" available for both iOS and Android? I've used Bump and it actually works pretty good. Too bad I won't be able to use this feature on my 9860.
Here's to Bump creating a BlackBerry app!

From the user side yes, except that Bump does not rely on NFC. Have not seen anyone using Bump, but the concept is pretty cool -- would be fun to see a BB implementation of Bump that hooked into Blackberry Tag to be able to develop standard gestures across platforms (i.e. that work both for all BB7+ phones, and all Bump-equipped phones).

This is a nice feature but probably not the deal breaker/maker for BB users. I do see how it would be between BB's because of security.

It is not this feature alone that I'm excited about as a BB user but a new pattern I've seen in BB leadership regarding content and ease of use. BB has always been the gold standard for e-mail and security and for us that like physical keyboards it is really enough but we have always looked at other devices and thought "Yeah, I love my BB but that is a nice feature and I would like something like it".

BB is the best device for me as is but I sure welcome the new additions. In addition to this there is BB Movies, BB Music, RIM also purchased JayCut (video editing), newBay (cloud storage and multimedia), TAT (arguably the best app developers) and obviously QNX.

All the serious stuff leaders and go get'em types absolutely demand from their smart phones but hey it is nice to be able to do some of the other stuff once in a while.

RIM finally got the memo and now they are working on something big. This is exciting and very cool. I hope RIM opens their BB Movies across all platforms but if you have a Playbook, they give you one movie per month free. This is not a waste of money for them but will get more and more people to buy their devices, try out the new movies and build habits.
If I was Netflix I would worry. BB may be bold enough to try something really big here.

... Or they'll just screw it up like they have everything else. Playbook will be history by the end of the Christmas season.

I used to carry their crappy devices and own their stock. Burned multiple times.

There is no future success.

Why should they...
Only for a future update to OS7, which means that it will only be available to very small percentage of BlackBerry owners. Never mind the number of OS7 users that will have to wait for months to see a carrier approve the update.

Hope that with QNX that RIM controls all updates.

Dear RIM:

Why are you introducing all these "social" enhancements at the same time you're bleeding market share? BBM Music. BlackBerry Tag. All of it. Concentrate on your new phone, new OS, and then we can worry about the six people who use BBM Music.

It's because they would be bleeding even *more* market share if they didn't add social enhancements. These features are the sort of things that people want in the year 2011, so get over it.

This is so awesome unfortunately I have the torch 9850 without NFC so looks like a screwed. I really wish I was able to use this feature. Oh well Ill just have to wait for the QNX phones. Finally happy to see NFC used.

one thing i see wrong with this is, if cloud storage is supposed to be the next big thing, how are you supposed to share something that is not on your phone? i like the idea though, im waiting for nfc wallet, or at least a phone case that also carries my credit card and 1 piece of id.

this is genius. From a business stand point The only devices that don't have nfc is all touch. The only qnx phone coming out next year is all touch. its a perfect set up for next year q4. for those holding out for a keyboard they will be satisfied for now with the 99xx version long enough for them to catch up on the one with a keyboard.

I dumped ATT because they never released the BlackBerry Bold 9900. I'm on Sprint with my shiny new Bold 9930 now.


Switch. Do it now.

A) This sounds like it has the potential for a HUGE security problem.
B) This also sounds super cool.
C) This, unfortunately, also screams 'ZUNE Share'. It was an interesting idea to be able to share Zune media with you friends over direct wifi connections, but you had to find someone else with a Zune first, to make it work.

Blackberries are becoming more and more scarce. New Blackberries, even more so. I am the only one at my company with a BB. Everyone else has either an Android based device or an iPhone. While I do occasionally come across a fellow BB user, they tend to be using phones maybe 1 generation newer than my own 8530. There is very little chance of this being adopted by a large enough group of users for people to even remember that this feature exists when you do finally find someone else with a BB that you are looking to share info with...

Sorry for sounding kind of down on this, but any new BB feature that excludes the older phones just further pushes me to realize that my next phone will likely be an Android, unless there is a compelling feature to keep me using my BB...

If your company is small enough that you know everybody's smart phone choice, then it's probably safe to say this isn't a representative sample consistent with what is to be found in mid- to large-sized companies...

"Sorry for sounding kind of down on this, but any new BB feature that excludes the older phones just further pushes me to realize that my next phone will likely be an Android, unless there is a compelling feature to keep me using my BB..."
You realize that older Android devices also don't have NFC, so they are excluded from Android's NFC support. Yesterday's new phones got dedicated graphics; older phones did not. (Not just w/ RIM, but various Android devices too).
That's the nature of the technology game. New technology will necessarily always exclude older devices that don't support that technology - creating a perceived limit on the functionality of the older devices.

In reality, those older devices haven't stopped doing everything. They continue to do the things you expect them to every day, until you device that you want a device capable of more.

I see your point in the rest of what you wrote (even if I don't agree with it)-- I just don't understand the logic behind that last paragraph.

More is better. The idea they "wasting time" on social advancements? Are you kidding me???RIM has to improve their overall user experience. More is better. They need these advancement AND to get QNX phone to consumers AND improve the playbook. The reality is the more "cool" things you can do with blackberry devices the better it is. NFC has the potential to be a "cool" new technology that gets people's attention. They NEED another cant live without feature besides BBM.

You answered your own question in sentence two and four of your less than gratifying comment. You've already jumped off the Blackberry bandwagon. Admit it already. How's a QNX phone gonna help if it was dropped tomorrow?? Think about it! The look and feel of OS7 on my torch is awesome and what a BB should be. BB is behind. They are playing catch-up. Its all(slowly) being rolled out. There's only so much development and testing that can be done in a year.

Great to hear, but what about the carriers that block the NFC. Still cool. Hope there will be a work around.

I know what you mean, its a shame they dont act faster on the things that could make them a powerhouse....good step in the right direction with having a little "fun" for once in a while.

Seriously? Yet another "coming soon"?

How about announcing things at their release for a change. By the time this is actually available - if RIM is true to form - it will be yesterday's tech.

I exaggerate, but surely this is the same pattern that we see over and over again...

At least RIM is trying something different not everyone will be happy with a certain feature like come on !! Give RIM a break I'm sick and tired of ppl talking down about them they have just released some amazing OS7 devices I purchased the 9810 and I love it far cry from the 9800 Torch I had but be patient with them and enjoy and learn to use ur phone:)

@drg0nz0... ya ok... where is your billion dollar company? When you got one of those, then make your comments... you would pimp out your seester to have a company like RIM.

Wow amazing technology use.

my caution is that it seems that it's going to be quite easy to swipe other peoples contacts etc, without their permission, or their knowledge - particularly if, for example you are at the cash register and are using NFC to pay for your goods because at that point NFC is turned ON.

I would hope that one would need to turn each NFC feature on individually in order for them to connect to another person's phone.

Imagine being at a Conference where the majority of people have NFC on and are swiping each others contacts - industrial espionage nevfer had it so easy, lol!!!

what is up with some of you who become so obnoxious, rude and defensive as soon as someone criticizes RIM? what is RIM doing for you other than providing outdated devices? is it curing your dad's cancer? is it feeding your child? is it helping you lose your fat rolls? I didn't think so.

Even a dog stops protecting his owner as soon has he dishes out crappy food...or atleast it would be open minded about other sources of food providers

I respect people who are fans of a product and like to stick no matter the quality ..fine...but don't be denying the massive shortcomings that RIM devices have by shutting down whoever is venting about it....

I, like most of you, was up RIM's ass down to my waist for 4 years...blindly defended its underwhelming camera, RAM, processor speed, app market against phones that were twice as good in specs for the same price ...i finally pulled out and boy i do not miss the smell of turd.

How are the 9900 or 9860 outdated devices?
They might not have dual-core processors, but either does the iPhone... 4S isn't out yet.
My 9860 is just as quick as my wifes iPhone4 or my Motorola Atrix.
There only thing they are lacking is in the app departement, but everything will change again once BBX arrives.

I like the ability to share "Contacts" more than multimedia.
This is very similar to a keychain fob capability that I saw demonstrated/testing in some test markets (can't remember the name).
It's a great business featuyre if it let's you check your "tags" or bumps from that day and keep those you really want.

No offense to RIM but, Apple and Android had this feature for how many years?? I'm just saying its good to see RIM trying to stay in the league now a days with other companies..

but to be honest the stuff RIM is putting out now either been done years ago, Or should of been put out years ago.

For ex: When the Google Nexus One first came out with the first 1ghz processor (i think that was the first smartphone to have one) RIM should of had hopped on the bandwagon like every other company and started using 1ghz in all they're phones.

thats just my opinion.. I'm loving my 99xx device.. but we all know this should of been done about a year ago

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"There only thing they are lacking is in the app departement, but everything will change again once BBX arrives."

... there lies the problem. If you truly believe that, I have a bridge for sale.

as many phones as i see just laying around, i hope no one figures out a way to "tap out" your info,,, looks like a security nightmare waiting to happen...