News

Vanessas Corner: a CrackBerry World

Vanessa's CornerAs some of you might know, the dictionary has a new addiction, errrr, I mean, addition. CrackBerry. And I guess almost everyone knows what it means but I don’t think that everybody understands how one gets caught in the BlackBerry web. You might be new to the Crackberry experience or you might know someone that is deep and lost to its sleepless powers. Here’s a true story.

Interview with Magmic CEO John Criswick

John CriswickMagmic Games is a leading developer and publisher of mobile entertainment, offering a wide variety of games for BlackBerry handsets. John Criswick, founder and CEO of Magmic Games was kind enough to take a few minutes and talk with us.

First of all, how do you pronounce your company's name? Is it a "g" like in "magic", or a "g" like in "magma"?

John: It is a G like in magma, in fact the word magmic has the same roots as magma as in a "slow moving hard to stop fluid".

Last summer you launched a new division called "Bplay" to focus exclusively on the BlackBerry community even though the name "Magmic" is practically synonomous with BlackBerry games. Why did you feel the need to create a new BlackBerry-only identity?

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Interview with Pinstack Founder Hayden James

PinStack.com is a free Internet forum community for BlackBerry users. It started in 2004 and has become an extremely popular destination and a valuable resource for BlackBerry owners. Pinstack's founder, Hayden James, was kind enough to give us a few minutes for a quick chat.

PinStack

Interview with Morgan Slain, CEO of SplashData

Morgan SlainNovember 30th, 2006: Hi Morgan, thanks for agreeing to talk with us today. Let's start with a little background information. How long have you been interested in mobile software?

Morgan: Absolutely, my pleasure. I've been a mobile applications enthusiast since I bought my first Palm Pilot in 1997. I became interested in the business side of mobile software when I joined Palm, Inc. at the beginning of 2000. One of my first projects was to take a look at the Palm applications market and figure out how we could make it bigger.

Vanessa's Corner: Introducing Vanessa's Corner

Vanessa's CornerI’d like to take a moment to introduce our new contributor: Vanessa!

Although she once formerly disdained the BlackBerry, a fateful 12 hour car trip with a BlackBerry changed her perspective and Vanessa has been assimilated converted amazed to find that her BlackBerry has now become an integral part of her life.

We’re so happy to have her on board that we’re giving Vanessa her own little corner of the website, Vanessa’s Corner, where she will offer her own unique insights into BlackBerry ownership.

Please join me in welcoming Vanessa to the site!

## This Article Was Originally Published on AllBlackBerry.com

CrackBerry.com Goes Worldwide - NetworkWorldAsia

Network World AsiaI had a nice interview today with Lalou Ramos of Network World Asia . We discussed CrackBerry.com and a host of topics surrounding the online space. One of the questions Lalou asked about CrackBerry.com is whether or not we have plans to offer the site in other languages. My answer was of course Yes!!!  But we currently don't have the in-house capabilities to make this happen. If there's anybody out there who would like to help us take CrackBerry.com to all corners of the globe in all languages, please be sure to contact us and help make it happen!

Check out Lalou's CrackBerry.com article here...  

New Avatars Available in the CrackBerry Forums

Custom BlackBerry AvatarsAttention forum regulars!

New avatars have been created and uploaded to the forums for your enjoyment.

The avatars are a collection of every BlackBerry model ever produced.

To select one of these new avatars:

1. Login to CrackBerry.com and go to the 'Forums'
2. Click on the 'User CP' link
3. Click on 'Edit Avatar'

On this page you will see all of the avatar options. Click through them until you find the BlackBerry model you're looking for.

You can also upload your own custom avatars as well! 

Enjoy!

Visit the CrackBerry Forums

CrackBerry Addiction Gone Too Far?

Excellent funny Blackberry Commercial from the UK. you know your addiction has gone too far when...


Blackberry Addiction - The best home videos are here

RIM to Launch New Model: The Halle Berry

RIM today announced that it will launch yet another BlackBerry based on the latest 8800 model.

Fully endorsed by movie star Halle Berry, this new model is to be sleeker, have more buttons, and will look good even if it isn't turned on.

Halle Berry

What's Going Down2Night? Check Your Berry

down2nightWhen we saw that headline on a press release we feared that maybe this was Wang Chung's official website. But, thankfully Down2Night is a new web application to help people find out what is happening in various locations each night. Talk about mobile 2.0.

Web-savvy users now have a social meet-up subscription service that gives them up-to-date SMS alert info on parties, drink promotions, live events and nightly happenings at venues they choose. They can also access the application to search for events on their BlackBerry and other mobile devices. Users can subscribe to their favorite nightlife venues and receive SMS alerts on their mobile phones about events happening on the nights that interest. No more "So what's going tonight? I dunno" type conversations.

Subscribers can set the venues they would like to know about and receive an alert on the BlackBerry or any mobile device telling them what is going down tonight. You can also pick particular nights you want to hear about. Other features include "What's Down," a dynamic menu of the event and promotion lists by each venue; "I'm Down," a user powered ranking of events at individual locations. And "Browse," and "search" features that enables users to search by pre-selected criteria such as "My Spots," "Most Popular" or all the venues in the database.

The service is already up and running in Seattle, San Francisco, and Tri-cities, Washington. Down2night will be launching in New York City, Las Vegas, Boston, Austin, Madison, Miami, Denver, Portland, Vancouver, Chicago, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Atlanta, and Houston in the very near future.

BlackBerry Stocks To Soar

RIM Ramping up BlackBerry Production Research in Motion, the makers of our favorite little device the BlackBerry, is set to outperform its rivals in the stock market according to RBC Capital Markets financial analysts. We’d like to think this is tied to the launch of CrackBerry.com but we suspect it might have something to do with RIM’s plans for extensive product rollouts over the next year.

According to a story on the Bloomberg financial wire, RIM will begin an “unprecedented product cycle” that will drive RIM stocks skyward and up 29 percent. That assessment according to RBC analysts Mike Abramsky and Paul Treiber.

This month, RIM launched the 8800 and there are plans for a sustained roll out of products that incorporate elements from both its business-oriented devices and its more consumer-friendly devices such as the Pearl. Depending on how RIM handle their “consumer strategy,” the two Toronto-based analysts suggest that stocks could go from $140 a share to $180. This despite earlier fears that Apple’s entrance into the market would have a negative impact on BlackBerry’s consumer sales.

As Abransky is quoted as saying “Strap on your seatbelts.” Of 33 analysts cited in the Bloomberg story 17 are positive on RIM, 13 non committal and 2 negative. RIM will supposedly bring out eight new handhelds in the next 24 months, including variations on the 8800, newer versions of the Pearl, a striped-down entry-level BlackBerry and, allegedly, a device designed to squarely take on the iPhone.

Read the full story here.

Welcome! CrackBerry.com is Open for Business!

Open Sign

Read the official press release on PRWeb.
Read the official press release on 24-7 Press Release. 

Welcome to CrackBerry.com! We actually put the site up live just over a week ago so we could make sure everything was running smooth prior to our official launch, and in that time the site has received overwhelmingly positive reviews from the BlackBerry Users and Abusers who have managed to find their way here.

We're still working to add a few finishing touches to the site, but since things were over 98.6% there we simply could not keep quiet any longer.  The time to start spreading the word about CrackBerry.com is Now!

Here are a few links to get you started on your way:

1.  Our Official Welcome - explains what we're about!

2.  The Crack Team Story - explains how this site came into existence.

3.  The CrackBerry Store - downloads galore, plus any accessory you could ever want to buy for your Berry. If you need anything BlackBerry, think CrackBerry.com.

4.  CrackBerry Forums - this is where registered members hang out and converse on all things CrackBerry.  Rumors, News, Help, and more.

5. The CrackBerry WAP Site - Check it out now on your PC.  This is the site you will get when you visit CrackBerry.com on your BlackBerry.  It's basically your portal to the mobile web - all the best sites that are viewable on your berry, plus lots of games, downloads and more. Download the desktop launcher (works on Pearl & 8700s) and you're never more than one click away from CrackBerry.com. You will LOVE this site when it comes to killing time at the airport.

6.  Register Now -  Registering is free, and it gives you full access to all content areas of the site, full access to the forums, and allows you to create your FREE @ CrackBerry.com email address.  If you're a true BlackBerry User & Abuser, getting an @CrackBerry.com is a must!  You simply choose any Name@CrackBerry.com you wish, and then specify an address and any emails sent to your @CrackBerry.com email will automatically redirect to the final destination you have chosen. Easy, Painless, and FUN.  The good names are going quick, so hurry!

There are nearly 10 Million BlackBerry Users out there.  We'd like to see 1 Million of them admit their addiction and become members of CrackBerry.com.  We want to make this the biggest community of BlackBerry Users ever!  Register Now!  

Enjoy the Site! 

Jessica Biel and the Powder Blue Pearl

We saw her at the Oscars this evening looking forlorn as she blabbed into her Blue BlackBerry Pearl hoping her ride would show up to take her to the ball. If we were her driver we wouldn't be keeping her waiting for anything. If we find an Academy Award pic we'll post it as soon as we can. In the meantime, here's a close up look at the powder blue Pearl. With Jessica attached at the Sundance Festival.

jessica biel blackberry

Forbes Editor Cannot Live Without His CrackBerry

The Editor of Forbes Magazine tries to go seven days without e-mail, BlackBerry, and cell-phone. And he cries like a baby. Sweet. Enjoy the Vid.

RIM Picks Up iPhone Gauntlet

Jim BalsilieThere is a big change coming in the way we listen to music and if RIM CEO Jim Balsillie has anything to do about it BlackBerries will be among the leading providers of mobile music in the near future.

According to a piece in today’s Globe and Mail, Balsillie wants the Blackberry to be leading the revolution in blending professional communications tools with music listening devices. “Apple has done us an enormous favour by saying you should expect music on your cellphone,” he said. “I think it’s 10 if not 100 times harder to do the communications aspect onto an MP3 player than to do the mass media player onto a communications framework. I think we’ll absolutely nail it before some new entrant comes even close. You know, everyone’s brave in the locker room. Let’s get it done.”

Clearly the maker of the CrackBerry is picking up the gauntlet thrown down by Steve Jobs last month when he unveiled the new iPhone with its graphically exciting iPod features.

This is hardly good news for the entertainment industry. That industry's efforts to protect its content online through Digital Rights Management (DRM) software are holding up development of the wireless industry, says Balsillie. He went on the criticize the DRM software that controls how consumers access and use the music tracks they buy online by saying it has become a messy process that essentially charges people twice for the same music if they use incompatible devices and discourages the wider adoption of portable digital music. A recent report on the BBC reported how some people paid two dollars for song download but then found a 20 dollar bill on their cell phone bill in data download and time usage bills “I think [DRM is] just going to break down with the normal proliferation of the Internet,” said Balsillie. “It’s going to be tough. I think content providers are going to have to shift their business models. But they will go down swinging.”

The music industry again seems to have been caught napping by changes in the way the internet and digital communications are evolving. Late onto the downloading bandwagon they are again scrambling to catch up to the proliferation of mobile communication devices.

The indication that RIM is not interested in joining the increasingly complicated milieu of DRM technologies, is bad news for the entertainment business which has thrown its weight behind DRM in an attempt to prevent online digital piracy. RIM who primarily sells wireless technology to businesses and government, has moved into a broader market with its first consumer device, the Pearl. It’s a market that RIM want to expand into and mobile music players and cameras are add-ons that are attractive to the consumer marketplace.

RIM expects to add one million new BlackBerry users this quarter and will likely announce deals to bring music and other content, such as picture messaging, to its new consumer BlackBerries before the end of this year.

A New CrackBerry Addiction to Worry About?

brickbreakerBlackberry addiction makes the front page of the Wall Street Journal. But it isn’t what you think. As addicting as our little e-mail pushing devices are, there is something even more insidious that lurks within.

Yep it's BrickBreaker.

According to the WSJ report, that most basic of games has a hard core of addicts who will even play during high stakes Wall Street conference calls. (The article is available online for subscribers) Brickbreaker has become so addicting for some executives that they are forced to remove it from their Berries. Apparently, its easy access on the Blackberry makes it too tempting to ignore and endless hours are being lost to this simple game that comes standard on the BlackBerry. The fact that is also so handy is what makes it so addicting say some executives.

The game seems positively ancient, in effect it is Pong 2.0. Basically you move a paddle left to right with the track wheel to bounce a ball upwards which destroys bricks. After removing all the bricks you move up to another level. Each level is more difficult than the last. Sometimes special bricks fall from the top to give you extra points or extra skills.

Perhaps it is this simplicity and retro-ness that makes it so much fun. It has developed a cult following and there are now groups of people who exchange strategies and brag about high scores. In one case, an attorney from New York was on an expedition on Mount Everest and he e-mailed a co-worker with his high score from the mountain base camp. You can in fact register you high scores on RIM’s site. The current registered record-holder is Daniel Allen, a 34-year-old economist in Santa Monica, Calif., who has racked up 1,392,260 points.

RIM developed the game to test the earlier BlackBerries and then to showcase the new colour screens. They, according to the article, were as surprised as anyone at the way the game has taken off. Top players have reported a frustrating tendency for the game to crash when scores start getting up to record levels, and they have learned to photograph record breaking levels before the fatal crashes occur.

So Much For The Release Date

blackberry 8800

You have to love a company that picks a launch date and then sticks to it. Then there is RIM. The official launch date for the new BlackBerry 8800 was today, but people have been finding and picking up new the devices all week. In fact, reviews and videos are cropping up all over the web already.

So, if you are sitting back waiting for the release you might want to run down to your local mall ASAP. People on our forum have already been picking them up. Visit our forum to find out the latest opinions of fellow CrackBerry addicts about the new version.

Your local Cingular/AT&T store will probably have them on the shelves right now…if they have any left.

No news on whether Rogers in Canada has the new version in stores yet.

Thanks to BoyGeniusReport for the image.

Update - Off to a Good Start!

Get your @CrackBerry.com Email AddressHappy Monday!

We have been running CrackBerry.com live for a few days now, and the initial response we have received from the blackberry addicts who have stumbled upon the site has been overwhelmingly postive.

I think members are loving the fact they can register an @CrackBerry.com email address, and the action in the forums shows me that the blackberry community is eager to turn CrackBerry.com into a site they frequent on a regular basis.

I still consider the site to be in pre-launch mode.  We have some tweaks and improvements to make over the next few days that should really help with the the functionality and usability of the site. Once complete, our efforts will turn towards promoting and growing the awareness and content of CrackBerry.com.  So if you can have some patience with the Crack Team over the next few days it will be very much appreciated.  If you notice anything really awry with the site, please don't hestitate to contact us.  And if you have any ideas or suggestions on how to make CrackBerry.com even better, feel free to stick them in the comments section of this post.

To all the people who have registered with the site, thanks for getting us off to a great start! Spread the word!  And if you haven't registered yet....what are you waiting for?!

New HTC Smartphone Launched

HTC Smartphone

If you are a gadget junkie you should have been in Barcelona, Spain this week at the 3GSM Convention. RIM rolled out its new Blackberry 8800 there and their European partner of sorts, HTC , rolled out their new smartphone. The HTC S710 smartphone (previously known as the Vox), comes with a nifty little slide out Qwerty keyboard. It's HTC's first phone to be based on Windows Mobile 6, although its S620 is upgradeable from Windows Mobile 5.0.

European provider Orange will be bringing out the S710 in Europe in the next couple of months, although there is no date for a UK rollout. Yves Maitre, Orange's vice president of devices, called the S710 the "Ferrari of the mobile phone". The device comes with stereo Bluetooth, 2MP camera, Wi-Fi and Windows Mobile 6's handy integration of Hotmail and Live Messenger. Might be more of a Nissan 350Z.

Co-Pilot GPS System Now on BlackBerry

co pilotALK Technologies Inc has launched the first “off-board” version of its Co-Pilot satellite navigation mapping application. The BlackBerry Pearl and 8800 are both compatible with the system. There are types of GPS systems - on-board and, not surprisingly, off-board. On-board systems carry all the amps from which routes are calculated on the device, while off-board systems carry only the ability to display the route info that is downloaded over the air from a central server.

To date, New Jersey-based ALK Technologies has been strictly an “on-board” player since it launched CoPilot in the late 1990s. The software was first launched on laptop computers where on-device storage is less of a constraint. CoPilot Laptop is currently at version. 10, Recently however the company developed versions for portable devices, initially for the iPAQ PDA and now for smart phones, such as the BlackBerry. The product's presence in Europe is currently on Windows Mobile devices from HTC and Symbian phones from Nokia.

The new version, CoPilot Live BlackBerry Edition, is both the first appearance of the software on that platform and ALK's first foray into “off-board”. All the third-party GPS packages that run on BlackBerry, such as Telmap and Wayfinder, are off-board because off-board generates more data traffic, and is preferred by network operators who see greater revenue as a result. According to the company, the reason for the development of an off-board version of CoPilot for the two BlackBerry phones was that it was easier to implement on their Java RTE. An on-board version for BlackBerry is currently in development.

While use of ALK's GPS package on the Pearl still requires an external puck with the GPS silicon, the 8800 launched earlier this week is RIM's first device with the GPS chip built in. The 8800 also ships with some basic mapping capabilities developed by RIM itself, based on map info from TeleAtlas NV. ALK and other mapping specialists, including Telmap, say their products go a lot further and so believe their carrier partners will continue to mandate their software be loaded on the devices for their GPS services. The CoPilot's ability to calculate multiple routes for the same stops is particularly useful in fleet management for delivery environments.

CoPilot also uses maps from TeleAtlas's archrival Navteq. Another difference is the fact that CoPilot offers optional integration into ALK's FleetCenter multi-vehicle tracking and fleet management web site, an area where RIM itself does not offer something similar.

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