BlackBerry’s Dev Alpha handset proved to be quite the popular item when it was revealed earlier this year. It was so popular, in fact, that the company ran through the 5,000 it constructed in short order. So, it had to build a whole new batch of developer handsets to meet the demand, and thus was the Dev Alpha B born. We got our mitts on this new bit of kit and had a chance to see how it handled RIM’s latest incarnation of BB10, so join us after the break for our impressions.
Well, it’s finally here. Sort of. It’s been a long and winding road for BlackBerry 10, and as has been RIM’s way, the company continues to out new BB10 details just a bit at a time. As you may recall, we got a good look at RIM’s original Dev Alpha hardware back in May, and were able to swipe our way through a good bit of BB10 a month later. It’s BlackBerry Jam time now, though, and RIM gave us a more thorough look at the OS than ever before, and we got to see it running on a new Dev Alpha B handset. We couldn’t pry loose any details about the hardware inside the new dev phone (other than it’s got a BB10-standard 1280×768 screen), but we did get a few fresh facts about the software running on it. Once again, RIM reminded us that the software we saw was not the final version, but that shouldn’t deter you from reading on past the break and seeing a video of BB10 in action.
Well, that was quick. Mere hours after holding a press conferencestating that it didn’t know when BlackBerry users would have their BBM, internet, and email working again, services have begun to come back online. Apparently email is up across the globe, as is BBM. Web browsing, however, continues to be “temporarily” unavailable to those on EMEIA networks in Europe, the Middle East, India, Africa and Latin America. There is of course a considerable backlog of messages to get through, but the good news is that all the BlackBerry bits and bytes are flowing freely once again. Hit the source link to get the info straight from the horse’s mouth.
If you don’t own a BlackBerry yourself, chances are you know somebody who does. And if that person lives in Africa, Asia, Europe, North America or South America, they’re probably quite unhappy with RIM at the moment. This week’s service outage began with a server failure in the UK, and spread like wildfire to Africa and the Middle East, before continuing on to parts of Asia, the US, Canada and a good portion of South America. This is only the latest BlackBerry service outage for RIM, bringing email, BBM and web browsing services to a halt. But with BlackBerry services playing a critical role in real-time business and government communications, any interruption is unacceptable, and costly for all.
Looking like the runt of RIM’s newest BlackBerry litter, the Curve Touch 9380 has recently surfaced on a German site starring in its own silent movie. The video, taken by MacBerry.de, shows off the mini-BB handset — née Orlando / Malibu — running the company’s OS 7 and confirming those NFC-capable rumors. A side-by-side comparison with a full-grown Curve and Storm gives you a true sense of just how wee the portrait QWERTY-less touch device actually is, with its 3.25-inch 480 x 360 HVGA display. The phone, purported to launch this Q4 in both GSM and CDMA versions, isn’t going to snag the beast tag anytime soon, but falls in line with earlier reported specs, sporting a respectable 800MHz Qualcomm MSM8655 processor, 5 megapixel camera, 1GB Flash, 512MB RAM, microSD card slot, WiFi and Bluetooth. If you’re in the market for a fashionable, Zoolander-approved smartphone, expect to pick up this little rascal on your carrier of choice later this year.
We make our own truth. That’s how IDC can come up with roughly the same numbers as fellow research firm Canalys and crown Apple the king, when its rival called Android top dog — it’s all about how you slice it. See, where as Canalys bundled all Android handset makers together, IDC has broken them up, which leads to a rather interesting twist — the largest smartphone maker in the world is now Apple. Cupertino’s growth of 141.7-percent in shipments year over year was enough to push it past Nokia (which slipped to number three) and Samsung (which climbed two spots to take the silver medal), while RIM and HTC rounded out the top five. That being said, no one is running away with the lead here, and Sammy’s continued stratospheric rise should keep Apple on guard.
It’s not exactly the most exciting device in RIM’s pipeline, but the Curve “Apollo” is shaping a solid workhorse of a BlackBerry. The still-unannounced smartphone popped up on Tinh te, with the Vietnamese tech showing off some solid hands-on time with the device, putting it through its paces on video, and ending up genuinely impressed with the aesthetics and speed of the hardware. According to the site the new Curve is 11mm thick (a couple millimeters thinner than the 8900 it’s juxtaposed with), packs a 800Mhz Marvell Tavor CPU MG-1 processor, and has a touch-insensitive 480 x 360 screen. Swipe that thumb touchpad after the break for a video tour of the phone, then dig the source link for more close up images.
Brits eager for a taste of the first 7-inch BlackBerry device have just under a month of anticipation left to go. UK retailers have today revealed the date and prices at which they’ll be selling RIM’s PlayBook: depending on how much integrated storage you want, you’ll have to pay up £400 (16GB), £480 (32GB), or £560 (64GB) for your slate, starting from June 16th. Aside from the gigabytes, you’ll be getting the gigahertz too, with a dual-core 1,000MHz TI OMAP4430 processor keeping the PlayBook’s insides warm and its outsides responsive. Availability will be widespread, with Carphone Warehouse, Phones 4u, and Best Buy UK having already announced they’ll be stocking the tablet. You can even hit up the source link now and lay down some cash to secure your pre-order.
We’ve seen it photographed, videotaped, and even, briefly, up on RIM’s own website. Now it’s up there to stay, the BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 (aka the Bold Touch) have been made official as RIM kicks off BlackBerry World in Orlando. As expected, the phone packs a 1.2GHz Snapdragon processor that has only a 2.8-inch VGA touchscreen with a 287dpi pixel density to worry about. On the back is a five megapixel camera and inside is 8GB of internal storage (with microSD expansion) and NFC circuitry. At 10.5mm it’s RIM’s thinnest handset yet, featuring a stainless steel circumference and a fiberglass back, while up front of course it makes room for a full QWERTY keyboard. The 9900 supports HSPA+ connectivity to get its 4G on, while the 9930 is the world variant, adding dual-band CDMA and quad-band GSM to the mix, and both do 802.11a/b/g/n along with Bluetooth 2.1. Both, quite naturally, include the new BlackBerry 7 OS, including a faster browser and voice-activated search. Another picture and full specs are listed after the break, which will have to do you until this handset releases sometime in the summer, meaning this could be your next great beach accessory for those working vacations.
CrackBerry has just dropped word via “numerous sources” that RIM will be revealing the next iteration of its mobile OS at the fast approaching BlackBerry World conference — and no, it’s still not QNX. Despite consistent rumblings that upcoming devices like the Bold Touch, and Monaco would be launching with OS 6.1, it seems that RIM has decided to re-brand the update completely as BlackBerry 7, perhaps to increase the value proposition and differentiate new devices being announced along with it. However, the site also speculates that current phones running BB6 may not get any BB7 action right off the bat — which could make sense, given that new features like NFC are only present in upcoming devices. All this is naturally unconfirmed, but if this is indeed yet another version of the BlackBerry OS, well, that certainly won’t help the platform get any more developer love.
We’re taking this with a grain of salt, since it applies only to users of the cross-platform Appcelerator Titanium development environment, but it appears that Windows Phone 7 is facing an increasingly uphill battle for mobile mind-share. At this point it should go without saying that a platform lives and dies by its developers and, according to Appcelerator, they’re growing less and less interested in creating apps for Microsoft’s smartphone OS. Only 29-percent of devs responded to the company’s quarterly survey that they were “very interested” in putting their wares on WP7, a fall of 7 points from last quarter and far less than market leaders Android and iOS. News is even worse for RIM, which saw a fall of 11-points in developer interest for BlackBerry, and now trails the folks from Redmond. Again, this survey is based only on the responses of 2,760 developers using a particular product, so we’d refrain from calling the results incontrovertible. Still, it reinforces something that even a casual observer could discern: BlackBerry and Windows Phone 7 have a tough row to hoe. Two more charts after the break.