BlackBerry News and Reviews

Verizon readying employees for BlackBerry Training

Yes, we know -- Verizon customers have been rather upset at the fact Verizon has made no announcements surrounding the BlackBerry Bold 9930 or any other new BlackBerry devices for that matter but fret not. Verizon is gearing up for launch just as much as the rest of the carriers out there they're just trying to keep it all a little more hush hush it seems. The latest info we have for Verizon is that BlackBerry training is ramping up in heavy proportions soon and while the documentation lacks any dates -- the fact it exists is quite enough for us. Now, take a deep breath and relax a little -- Verizon may be all up Android's arse but not that far.

Thanks, Anon!

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BlackBerry Bold 9900, Torch 9810 now appearing in Rogers upgrade systems

Rogers has a long history of being the first Canadian carrier to launch the newest BlackBerry devices and with the announcement of the new BlackBerry 7 line we have no reason to believe that will change. In fact, we just received some more proof shall we say that Rogers is already ahead of other carriers in terms of launch for the BlackBerry Bold 9900 and BlackBerry Torch 9810.

The devices are now showing up in the hardware upgrade options. Sure, it could be that we've just not received any other carriers’ info but again, history dictates Rogers will do everything in their power to be first out the gates with the new devices. Even if Rogers doesn't arrive first -- we now know carriers across the board are getting ready. It's coming down to the final waiting period now -- the worst of which, is already over. 

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Teen girls choosing BlackBerry over iPhone in the UK

 

Ofcom, an independent regulator and competition authority for the UK communications industries, showed some suprising information in their 2011 Communications Report in regards to user smartphone brand preferences. According to their information, U.K. teens, especially females, seem to prefer BlackBerry devices over other smartphone brands. Their anecdotal information suggests this could be due to the free BlackBerry Messenger service. Overall, it seems females, in particular, prefer BlackBerry over the other options out there. The report also shows app use is higher amongst teens than the adults who are iPhone’s biggest fans. This could be a huge opportunity for BlackBerry App World and BlackBerry application developers.

This is good news for RIM, and with a little effort, hopefully they will keep this generation of cell phone users hooked on BlackBerry for many years to come. I know my teenage daughter can't wait for me to upgrade again so she can move from her BlackBerry Curve 8330 to my Style 9670. Let us know in the comments if your kids are bugging you for a new BlackBerry too.

Source: Ofcom

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Rogers brings back 6GB/$30 data plans for a limited time

Listen up Canadians, Rogers is bringing back one of their most popular deals. From now until September 30th you can add the 6GB/$30 data plan for your smartphone to a voice plan with a three-year term. You can also share this data plan with another device starting at $10/month per device, with up to four devices being allowed. And new or existing customers on the My10 Promo Plan can upgrade their data allowance from 1GB to 6GB for an additional $10/month.

Eligibility

  • You must have a voice plan in order to add the 6GB/$30 and it’s available with a three year term only. Tethering is included at no extra charge.
  • For sharing options, your primary line must be a smartphone with a three year term and your secondary device can be any of the following:
    • Tablet
    • Rocket Stick
    • Netbook or laptop with embedded Rocket Stick
    • Rocket Mobile Hotspot
Looks like a pretty enticing deal to go along with a fresh new BlackBerry, I think. If you're on Rogers, do you plan on taking advantage of this offer?

Source: RedBoard

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Foursquare for BlackBerry updated to v3.1.5

Hey foursquare users, it appears an update is rolling out through BlackBerry App World for you. The update brings the app to v3.1.5, and while there is no word on what the changes are, it's likely bug fixes for BlackBerry Messenger 6 integration. Some users were still experiencing trouble linking their accounts together. If you aren't seeing the update when you log in to App World, you can try refreshing by pressing alt+r/s/t on your device.

Download foursquare v3.1.5 from App World
Discuss in the forums

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Fake BlackBerry Bold 9900 already spotted in Dubai

 

Well that sure didn't take long, the device has yet to even hit the market, and the fakes are already rolling around. Above is a fake BlackBerry Bold 9900 that was found in a store in Dubai called Dragon Market, and at first glance it would be kind of hard to even tell it is a fake. The device is running a price tag of an impressive $100, but who knows just how many years they want to lock you in for. One more picture after the break. 

Thanks, Stefan! 

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Tap Madness for the BlackBerry PlayBook

 

If you're looking to kill a couple of hours with an interesting touch game then look no further than Tap Madness by Matt Fisher. For a chronic ADD person such as myself this game is able to hold my attention and manage to be frustrating (in a good way) at the same time. Before you know it you'll find yourself hooked just like me. 

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From the Forums: Verizon's online BlackBerry results don't add up

Following up on our post about Verizon being in the process of making a commercial for a new BlackBerry device, CrackBerry member mustangv8 noticed a subtle change to the Verizon website. When searching BlackBerry in the smartphone category, the search results come back with 8 results, but only pictures for 6 devices, but the previous day the numbers had matched. What is Verizon hiding here? Is it likely they've already loaded the Bold 9930 and Torch 9850 into the system, and are just keeping them under wraps for now, or has Verizon just forgotten how to count?

Discuss more in the forums

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CrackBerry Reminder: What you may have missed this week


New BlackBerry 7 devices all go up for pre-order at Best Buy Canada

Want to be among the first to lay your hands on the new BlackBerry 7 devices as soon as they hit in Canada? No problem -- Best Buy has you covered. You can now head on in to your local Best Buy and drop $50 to ensure your device will be in your hands as soon as possible. Yes, Best Buy is doing pre-orders for all the new BlackBerry 7 devices. Now all you have to do is decide on which device you'll be picking up for yourself.

Source: Best Buy; via: Mobile Syrup

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Friday Fun: BlackBerry 7 Smartphone NickNames... We dub thee Bold 9900/Bold 9930 the Gretzky!

We recorded a CrackBerry Podcast earlier today, talking about all of the newly-announced BlackBerry 7 Smartphones. It's a fun show, so be sure to listen. But by the end of it, we realized we NEEDED to come up with some shorter nicknames for this next generation of BlackBerry Smartphones. Ater sixty minutes of CrackBerry talk tossing back names like Bold 9900, Bold 9930, Torch 9850, Torch 9860 and Torch 9810 we were getting tongue tied and parched lips. Back in June I wrote a ranty editorial titled Can we just call it the BlackBerry Bold Touch already? This Bold 9900 / Bold 9930 thing is driving me crazy! which highlighed my annoyance that in order to address the new Bolds in a technically correct way, I could never just say Bold 9900 (as that ignores it's CDMA counterpart the 9930). Oh if only there were a unique way to identify both devices in one sentence, life would be grand.

With the Bold Touch or Touch Bold sounding a bit too much like a bad porno, I've tried to let that name slip from my vocabulary. But on today's podcast we managed to wrangle up a fitting name for the Bold 9900 / Bold 9930... the GRETZKY! Think about it. Gretzy was #99 (9900), Canadian (BlackBerry is from Canada), RIM loves hockey (remember Jim Balsillie wanted to buy an NHL team) and Gretzky is the Great One, just as the Bold 9900/9930 is the greatest of the traditional BlackBerrys to date. So there ya have it... if you want a good, short and fitting nickname that encompasses the Bold 9900 and Bold 9930, just refer to the new Bolds as the Gretzky.

As for the new Torches, here's where we're at. Since the Torch 9800 was the first Torch, it's still the Torch to us. So we're calling the new Torches by their last two digits.  So we got the ten (Torch 9810), the fiddy (Torch 9850) and the sixty (Torch 9860).  And if you want to refer to both the Torch 9850 and Torch 9860 together, just call it the fiddy sixty, which is super fun to say.

So if you're going to hit the bar this weekend and the topic of RIM's new BlackBerry Smartphones comes up, make things easy and talk about the Gretzky, the ten, and the fiddy sixty. Have any better nicknames for these new BBs? Drop em in the comments!

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Commercial in production for Verizon's new BlackBerry lineup

We've seen a lot of disappointed folks this week on Verizon that are concerned that Big Red won't be carrying any of the new BlackBerry 7 smartphones. We don't know the reason why Verizon hasn't announced officially which devices they will carry, but as one of the biggest wireless providers in the US, it seems silly to think they would drop BlackBerry all together. In any case, this tidbit of information posted in the forums today should help squash some of your worries. Christian Remde is a director, and he posted on his personal blog on Tuesday about his latest project, which happens to involve this exact subject. *Edit: Apparently between the time I wrote this and it was published, he edited out the BlackBerry portion of what you see below. Rest assured, it WAS there this morning.*

This week I'm directing for Invodo, an agency here in Austin.  One of their clients is Verizon Wireless and, in particular, I'm directing a web spot for one of Verizon's new Blackberry smart phones that are coming out in the next month or so.  Can't say too much about the actual device as I had to sign some NDA's, but it's a very cool project.
So fear not Verizon subscribers, you won't be left out of the loop when these new devices are released. As far as release dates and prices, well, those remain to be seen. Thanks for posting this in the forums xweb10!

For more information and to discuss in the forums

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CrackBerry Podcast 073: BlackBerry 7 Smartphones Announced!

OK BlackBerry Fans, here's a CrackBerry podcast you won't want to miss. It was a crazy awesome week on the blogs, with BlackBerry 7 Devices getting announced and BlackBerry 7 Fan Night generating a bunch of hands-on content.

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BlackBerry Messenger v6.0.0.129 now available for download

If you've been expereincing some issues with the previous build of BlackBerry Messenger then we have some good news for you all. BlackBerry Messenger v6.0.0.129 is now rolling out through the freshly beta zoned BlackBerry App World 3.0. While most of the change log remains untouched, you will take note that the "Show what I'm listening to" feature is back.

Download BBM 6.0.0.129 From BlackBerry App World

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Weekly Accessory Roundup - Win a set of v-moda Vibe stereo headphones!

Contest: Win a set of v-moda Vibe headphones! Keep reading for details.

Ever been sitting somewhere, totally bored, wishing you could listen to music? Only to be sad when you realize you have no headphones around? Often times many people forget about headphones, not that they don't want them, but more so that they aren't on the top of their mind. The past few months I have been using the v-moda Vibe in ear headphones and I must say I am quite surprised. An important thing about headphones is the ability to handle a wide variety of sounds and music genre's, and these headphones do this quite perfectly. Whether listening to top 40 tunes, hip hop, R&B or classical music -- the sounds are amazing and extremely crisp. Don't be caught without a nice set of headphones while on the go anymore! Enter below to win your own set today!

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Mobile Nations Podcast 004: From boardroom to bedroom

Phil, Tim, Dan, Rene and myself talk Google vs. Microsoft patent slap-fight, new BlackBerrys (new BlackBerrys!!), waiting on Pre 3 and the TouchPad 3.0.2 update, and Apple eating all the mobile profits on this Mobile Nations! And right after this was recorded this morning the Crack Team got together for a full out BlackBerry Podcast. That one will be hitting the blogs shortly too, so listen to this, then list to that! It's a Podcast Friday!

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Full Rogers pricing details for the BlackBerry Bold 9900, Torch 9860 and Torch 9810

With the BlackBerry Bold 9900, BlackBerry Torch 9810 and BlackBerry Torch 9860 all headed to Rogers soon many folks are wondering how much, exactly the new devices will cost them. Rogers has thus far confirmed the contract pricing for all three devices but given the fact many folks are starting to move away from contracted devices these days we managed to get our hands on the full range of pricing details for you all. You can head on past the break to see pricing for the BlackBerry Torch 9810 and BlackBerry Torch 9860.

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BlackBerry News for the BlackBerry PlayBook updated to 1.0.0.91, returns to the future

 

Yesterday - and I'm talking less than 24 hours ago - I noticed a curious thing about BlackBerry News for the BlackBerry PlayBook: it was living in the past. Restarting the app and then the PlayBook did no good. The application simply refused to show any articles posted later than July 31, 2011. As to why, I couldn't tell you. Perhaps the app just couldn't come to grips with the fact that Sunday would have been Harry Potter's 31st birthday.

Today, Research In Motion quickly fixed that bug by releasing version 1.0.0.91 of BlackBerry News for the PlayBook, specifically to fix the "known issue with timestamp." A quick download and BlackBerry News is working just fine.

If you're not familiar with the application, BlackBerry News is an RSS news reader that presents your feeds in a layout similar to a newspaper or magazine. It offers a much more visually appealing look to your news than the standard lists of lists. The tablet app also syncs to its smartphone counterpart. Something I missed on my first review, RSS feeds added using the BlackBerry News Feeds smartphone app will be added to the BlackBerry News app on the PlayBook and vice versa.

It's nice to see Research In Motion move so quickly to fix the date problem on BlackBerry News. It's good to know that RIM supports and stands behind even this humble (and Awesome!) application. BlackBerry News for the PlayBook and BlackBerry News Feeds for the BlackBerry Smartphone are available to users in Canada and the United States.  

More information / download BlackBerry News App for PlayBook
More information / download BlackBerry News Feeds for the BlackBerry Smartphone

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BlackBerry App World 3.0 now in BlackBerry Beta Zone

The long awaited BlackBerry App World 3.0 has finally made it's way to the BlackBerry Beta Zone. The overhauled app gets a few much needed updates including and all new UI. Surely it still has some bugs as it's in beta, but hopefully things move along quickly and an official release isn't too far off. Features include:

  • Sleek New Design - The BlackBerry App World experience has been enhanced to help users discover the latest and greatest apps and content, starting right on the BlackBerry App World home screen where rotating spotlight banners show off all that's new and exciting.
  • New Channels - Apps, Games, and Themes now have their own channels so users can get to what they want even faster.
  • Introduction of My Account - My Account makes managing BBID and payment options easy with direct access to all account information from the home screen.
  • New My World Features - My World gives users a streamlined view of their apps and status, and now at a glance, in addition to seeing which apps are installed and uninstalled, users can manage subscription content and services. When new updates or subscription renewals are available for apps, users will be notified using push technology.
  • App Social Sharing - When a user finds an app they can't live without, they can share it directly from the app details screen through BBM, Facebook, Twitter, email and SMS
  • Evolved App Details Screen - At a glance, users can get a quick summary, check out reviews and star ratings, take a look at screen shots, and more
  • More Search Options - Quickly find apps with a Search Bar now appearing on the storefront home screen and search results are presented across Channels as well as My World. Search Bars are also within each Channel and users have the ability to filter by App Name, Price, Rating, Newest, Best Match, or Popular

BlackBerry Beta Zone users can grab the download today. If you aren't yet a Beta Zone member, hit the link below to register.

Register for the BlackBerry Beta Zone

Source: Inside BlackBerry

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BlackBerry touchscreen evolution: Comparing the Torch 9810, 9850 / 9860 to the Torch 9800 and Storm 2

[ youtube video link for mobile viewing ]

After recording up our BlackBerry Bold comparison video at BlackBerry 7 Fan Night, RIM's Jeff Gadway and I did up a final video for the night, this time taking a look at the evolution of the full touchscreen experience on BlackBerry Smartphones (thanks again to CrackBerry member the brother for doing the filming!).

With the BlackBerry Bold line representing the best of the traditional BlackBerry form factor and experience, the Torch brand now represents the best of the full touchscreen experience. So the Storm name is officially dead, and that's why you're now seeing two form factors of Torches -- both the slider 9800/9810 and full touchscreen 9850/9860 -- under the Torch brand. Thus the Curve brand for RIM represents entry level BlackBerry Smartphones, which will cover both styles of form factor (and yes, new Curves are definitely on the way soon).

We cover a lot of things in this video, so it's definitely one to watch. We start off with a comparison of the BlackBerry Storm 2 to the new full touchscreen BlackBerry Torch 9850 / 9860, and from there we do a comparison of the Torch 9800 to the BlackBerry Torch 9810, including a web browser head to head. The new Torch is said to be 40% faster at web browsing than BlackBerry 6 (and I think a 100% faster than OS 5), and we definitely saw every percent of that improvement in our initial tests. I can't wait to get some BlackBerry 7 devices to call my own so I can really put them through my standard CrackBerry tests. Maybe it's time for another BBM Stress Test?!!  Enjoy the video!

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