Posts Tagged blackberry

BlackBerry’s about money first, phones second (and that’s just fine)

BlackBerry’s future as a phonemaker came into question yesterday when Reuters reported that CEO John Chen would consider selling its handset division. Naturally, the company sought to set the record straight… with a blog post from Chen himself published earlier today.

“I want to assure you that I have no intention of selling off or abandoning this business any time soon,” he wrote, noting that his comments were taken out of context. So what exactly did he mean? Chen quietly crashed a reporter’s roundtable with BlackBerry enterprise chief John Sims this morning (apparently in search of a cup of coffee) — here’s what he told us about the Reuters interview and the future of BlackBerry’s phones.

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Source: Inside BlackBerry

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T-Mobile offers BlackBerry subscribers $100 credit toward any other phone

T-Mobile head honcho John Legere’s assuring its BlackBerry-toting subscribers they’ve got nothing to worry about despite the companies’ falling out. But, just in case they are worried (or just want to try other platforms), he’s also offering them a $100 credit toward any device. Legere made the announcement in an open letter, where he also reminded folks they can also open a new T-Mobile line for a BlackBerry if they bring their own unlocked device.

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Via: CNET

Source: T-Mobile

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T-Mobile will no longer carry BlackBerry devices

By the looks of it, BlackBerry chief John Chen wasn’t appeased by T-Mobile’s attempt to make peace — in fact, things have only escalated: T-Mobile will no longer carry any BlackBerry device. In a press release today, the company formerly known as RIM announced that it has chosen not to renew T-Mobile’s license to sell its products when it expires on April 25th, 2014.

Chen says:

BlackBerry has had a positive relationship with T-Mobile for many years. Regretfully, at this time, our strategies are not complementary and we must act in the best interest of our BlackBerry customers. We hope to work with T-Mobile again in the future when our business strategies are aligned

If you’re wondering what exactly happened between the two companies, it all started when T-Mobile encouraged BlackBerry-toting customers to switch to the iPhone. Obviously, that didn’t sit well with Chen, so the magenta network launched a promo for existing BB owners, giving them $200 to $250 if they’re upgrading to another BlackBerry device. Those who decided to do so need not worry, though: the two promise not to let this nasty divorce get in the way of supporting their current customers.

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Source: BlackBerry

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BlackBerry updates BBM with stickers and group photo sharing

Admit it: sometimes what you need to say is best expressed through the image of a WWE character. Now you can send that wrestler, or a picture of Shaun the Sheep (if you’re feeling a little less hostile) to friends via BBM. Following rumors we heard a few weeks ago, today BlackBerry launched stickers for the messaging app, similar to what all some other messaging apps have been doing for a while now. The company is opening a new BBM Shop where you can pick up a variety of sticker packs (with 20-25 icons each) now for $1.99 or less a pop, with more expected to come on a regular basis. If the addition of stickers isn’t quite enough for you, today’s update also brings the ability to share photos with friends in multi-person chats, so you can make sure whole crew gets that #groupie at the same time.

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Source: BlackBerry

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BlackBerry loses its bread and butter as Bold and Curve sales finally collapse

In commercial terms, BlackBerry’s much-hyped BB10 phones barely made a dent. The manufacturer’s financial health has actually been propped up this whole time by sales of its older classics, Bolds and Curves running on BB7. It’s pretty incredible how long those models have lasted, but BlackBerry’s latest earnings report reminds us that nothing lasts forever: BB7 sales have fallen 50 percent year-over-year to 2.3 million units, which is double BlackBerry 10 sales, but not nearly enough to help the company stay in the black. Of course, the collapse of legacy hardware isn’t news to the CEO, John Chen, who has promised to support BB7 devices “for as long as there’s demand,” but who has also set about rebuilding BlackBerry as fast as he possibly can.

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Source: BlackBerry

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Is President Obama switching to Android?

obama-smartphone

Last week it was reported that the White House was testing both Samsung and LG smartphones for what could be the end of BlackBerry. You really didn’t think that would happen did you? I am almost certain that if the White House ever dumped BlackBerry, it would be in favor of the iPhone. Even so, it doesn’t look like either is up for the challenge because a White House spokesman has made it clear that the Executive Office of the President is not testing non-BlackBerry phones.

I think the White House is BlackBerry’s last customer. The Pentagon, Capital Hill Offices, the State Department, the National Security Agency, and the Department of Homeland Security all allow employees to use a Samsung Android phone or iPhone. I guess we will have to wait until 2016 for BlackBerry to leave the White House.

source: Washington Post

Come comment on this article: Is President Obama switching to Android?

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White House testing LG and Samsung smartphones, considering BlackBerry replacement

It’s been a rough few years for BlackBerry, but America’s highest office remains a dedicated customer — for at least a few more months. According to a Defense Department spokesman quoted in the Wall Street Journal, the White House is currently testing smartphone replacements from other manufacturers. Android appears to be the OS of choice, with the agency’s internal tech team evaluating handsets from LG and Samsung. As for BlackBerry, while the relatively small White House is hardly a significant customer from a financial perspective, the symbolic move would clearly be a significant blow. Though according to the aforementioned spokesperson, any move away from BB is still “months away.”

(Photo credit: Associated Press)

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Source: WSJ

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BlackBerry liquidates most of its Canadian real estate

BlackBerry's John Chen at Mobile World Congress

BlackBerry has been signalling for weeks that it would sell most of its Canadian offices in order to save some badly needed cash, and today it reached a deal to do just that. The pact will see the company sell over 3 million square feet of property in its homeland, leasing some of it back; the Waterloo headquarters should remain intact. Everything should wrap up before the end of BlackBerry’s current quarter, which ends in May. The agreement should help BlackBerry focus on its core business (whatever that may be), although the move may not be enough when major customers like the White House are thinking of jumping ship.

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Via: Bloomberg

Source: BlackBerry

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White House Tests Samsung, LG Smartphones As Possible Replacement For BlackBerry

It looks like BlackBerry will finally be losing its status as the secure mobile platform of choice of the US government. This after reports have come out that the White House is said to be testing smartphones from Samsung and LG for internal use.

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A person who is familiar with the mater yet wishes to remain anonymous said that the testing is still in its initial stages. Conducting the tests are the White House’s internal technology team and the White House Communications Agency. It will take months before the tests will be completed and right now there is no indication that President Obama will give up his modified BlackBerry.

A defense department spokesperson however gave a clue that indeed there are tests being conducted right now to find a suitable replacement for the BlackBerry platform. “We can confirm that the White House Communications Agency, consistent with the rest of the Department of Defense, is piloting and using a variety of mobile devices.”

Samsung did not comment directly on this development saying only that “We have seen strong interest from the government sector and are working closely with various agencies to deploy pilot programs.”

A spokesperson for LG on the other hand said that the company is not aware that their devices are being tested as a possible replacement for BlackBerry.

A BlackBerry representative said when asked to comment about this said that “For more than a decade, BlackBerry has been securing the U.S. government’s mobile communications and only BlackBerry is designed to meet the high-security needs of U.S. and allied government agencies.”

It is also interesting to note that the White House is considering the Android platform as a replacement and not the iOS platform. President Obama however said in the past that he prefers to use an iPhone. He even uses an iPad for reading although it isn’t part of the testing program.

BlackBerry was once the most popular platform among government personnel and during its peak cornered an estimated half of the total North American market. That number has now dwindled to only 0.6 percent as reported by the IDC.

BlackBerry is trying to regain its lost glory and in the past months have made some changes in the way it operates. It is also trying to win back its government customers by opening a security innovation center in the Washington D.C. area later this year.

via wsj

The post White House Tests Samsung, LG Smartphones As Possible Replacement For BlackBerry appeared first on The Droid Guy.

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Verizon’s BlackBerry 10 phones are finally getting their 10.2.1 updates

A few lucky Verizon BlackBerry buffs got the long-awaited 10.2.1 update back in January, and now Big Red is starting to push that new build to all its Z10, Q10 and Z30 owners. The new version number doesn’t sound all that impressive, but the changelog is heftier than the label lets on: there’s loads of UI tweaks to dig into, to say nothing of an offline reading mode, better support for group messaging and FM radio functionality… if you’ve got a Q10 or Z30. BlackBerry also made it easier to install Android APKs, if you’re into that sort of cross-platform witchcraft. Verizon is the second major US carrier to make this update available (T-Mobile took the gold this time), but there’s still no word on when AT&T and Sprint will get their respective acts together.

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Source: @VZWNews

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BlackBerry’s identity crisis continues

To say that BlackBerry’s had it tough these past few years would be putting it mildly, if not too delicately for a company emerging from a period of willful ignorance. The Waterloo-based outfit, formerly known as Research in Motion, played an embarrassing game of catch-up in the mobile space it once dominated. An uphill rehabilitation that saw it acquire QNX to build a new operating system, release a half-baked tablet, rebrand as BlackBerry in search of a new identity and, tellingly, hire Alicia Keys as a creative figurehead.

And none of it mattered — not even the forced infusion of Ms. Keys’ questionable zeitgeist-y influence. The BlackBerry of today has so far failed to resurrect sufficient interest in its fledgling mobile platform and devices, leading to the ouster of former CEO Thorsten Heins, the very recent installation of John Chen and a redoubled focus on the enterprise set that once was core to the company’s business. So why does the company still seem to be engaged in an internal tug-of-war over its identity? I had a chance to speak with Gary Klassen, longtime BlackBerry employee and principal architect, here at SXSW in the hopes he could shed some light on what the Blackberry of today stands for and where it’s going.

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T-Mobile says 94% of Blackberry users jumped ship to other platforms

Blackberry is in sharp decline, that much we know. Having been on a downward spiral for years, the company was outraged at a recent T-Mobile promotion offering current Blackberry owners incentive to upgrade to an iPhone. T-Mobile tweaked the promo to be more Blackberry friendly, but it didn’t help the Waterloo OEM. Reports suggest around 94% of blackberry owners jumped ship.

If you’re not familiar with the brouhaha, we’l recap it quickly. T-Mobile offered Blackberry users a promotional deal on an iPhone upgrade, to which Blackberry enthusiasts (both of them) took exception, along with the CEO of Blackberry. T-Mobile backed off the iPhone angle a bit, instead offering Blackberry users a chance to upgrade to anything they liked — Blackberry devices included. T-Mobile Blackberry customers would get a $200 incentive to upgrade, and an additionall $50 should they get a Z10 or Q10.

Sounds pretty great, right? Upgrade to a brand new Blackberry device and get $250 in credit! Wrong. A resounding 94% of Blackberry users on T-Mobile took the chance to get something else entirely. While we don’t know how many Blackberry devices were traded in, T-Mobile notes a 15-fold increase in Blackberry trade-ins.

While the initial “iPhone-only” thing may have been a slap in the face from a carrier, 94% of users taking advantage of the offer to get away from Blackberry should tell the company something. This also comes after T-Mobile has decided to transition away from carrying Blackberry devices in-store, so it seems Blackberry is losing on all fronts. At least they have BBM.

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BlackBerry 10 finally gets its own Microsoft OneDrive app

If you worship at the BlackBerry altar and are in dire need of a cloud storage service that isn’t Dropbox, Box or Mega, today’s your lucky day. Now you can dump your files in Microsoft’s OneDrive by way of a newly released BlackBerry 10 app. Like the Android and iOS versions before it, this OneDrive app lets you automatically upload your photos and videos as well as share your files with far-flung cohorts. Just be mindful of your limits: OneDrive (which went by “SkyDrive” before Microsoft got hit with a lawsuit) offers up 7GB of free storage to new users. That’s still better than the 2GB that Dropbox gives away gratis, but Box and Mega offer 10GB and 50GB of free space, respectively. Choose wisely… or sign up for all of them and surrender yourself to the cloud.

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Via: CrackBerry

Source: BlackBerry World

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BBM to let you share photos in multi-person chats and transfer larger files

BlackBerry has been on a BBM roll lately, unleashing the messaging service on not just iOS and Android but Windows Phone as well. However, that’s not all that’s up the Waterloo company’s sleeve. A new version of BBM is in the pipeline, and it’ll have a few new features that will delight the BBM power users amongst you. For one thing, you’ll finally be able to share photos in multi person chats, plus you’ll get the ability to send files that are up to 16MB in size — the current limit is 6MB. In a response to customer feedback, BlackBerry also promises that the size of the emoticons will be bigger. There’s no clear timeline on just when this update will roll out, but we’re just happy that BlackBerry has plans to improve its messaging app beyond mere stickers.

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Source: BlackBerry

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CrackBerry’s celebrating its 7th birthday with a giveaway… and it’s not a BlackBerry!

CrackBerry's celebrating its 7th birthday with a giveaway… and it's not a BlackBerry!

Our friends at CrackBerry are celebrating their 7th birthday this week (as if they needed a reason to celebrate this week), and they’re doing it by giving away a batch of cool stuff. Oh, and it’s cool not-BlackBerry stuff.

“What kind of cool not-BlackBerry stuff?” you ask? How about this:

    



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Blackberry CEO says he’d take $19 billion for BBM, makes us all laugh

In an interview with CNBC at MWC this week, Blackberry CEO John Chen was asked about the WhatsApp purchase. Considering he runs a company that exists almost solely as a messenger service for consumers, putting him in direct competition with WhatsApp, his opinion is of interest. The answer to the question was unsurprising, as Chen said he’d gladly accept a similar offer.

 Chen says he’d gladly take $19 billion for BBM, should someone come forth with an offer. “I know there is a lot of value in our messaging service” Chen said. When asked about selling BBM, Chen said “If someone came to me with $19 billion, I would definitely sell it.” Of course, he cautioned that such a decision is up to the board, but there would likely be no hurdles there.

Blackberry was nearly sold for just over $5 billion not long ago, but investors balked after the initial agreement to sell was struck. A $19 billion payday would be far and away more than BBM is worth, which CNBC points out could be right around $3.4 billion when compared to the WhatsApp purchase.

Chen also says BBM is tied into their enterprise service pretty closely, and the company is concentrating on building it out before entertaining any valuation. That’s probably a smart move, as a $3.4 billion valuation based on a terribly inflated WhatsApp purchase is likely overreaching. To their credit, Chen says Blackberry is focussed on their customers right now, and isn’t worrying about selling just yet. That, or nobody is asking for a sit-down to talk acquisition.

VIA: TechCrunch

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BlackBerry currently has no plans for a wearable device

Wearable devices seem to be a hot trend in the wireless industry right now, but BlackBerry isn’t taking the bait… at least, not yet. When asked about his company’s plans at Mobile World Congress, CEO John Chen was very straight-forward in confessing that he has no current plans for bringing a wearable device to market. That doesn’t mean it won’t happen down the road at some point, of course, but it’s clear that this particular market segment isn’t really an area of interest or focus right now — considering the company is working hard to bring out fresh devices and is in the midst of getting back to becoming profitable, and it appears that BlackBerry doesn’t believe that such a device would really make a dent in its bottom line yet.

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BlackBerry Z3 ‘Jakarta’ coming to Indonesia in April for under $200

BlackBerry CEO John Chen is here at MWC and has some device news. The executive announced progress on the Z3, the phone codenamed Jakarta (shown off above), which will be coming out to Indonesia in April. The company plans to sell the 5-inch device, which is a collaboration between BlackBerry and Foxconn, for under $200. The initial model will be 3G-only, but Chen also tells us that there will be an LTE version coming out to other parts of the world at some time in the future; joking, Chen mentioned that it would come out “sometime before I die.” We’re also told that BlackBerry plans to do some interesting new stuff with BBM. Update: we got a few up-close photos of the Z3, which you’ll find below. The Z3, which runs BB 10.2.1, definitely has the trademark look and feel of a BlackBerry. It’s a sleek all-touch device with a ridged soft-touch back cover. Unfortunately we weren’t able to hold the device, so we can’t speak to how comfortable it is. We’re also told that we’ll be quite happy with long battery life, but no further specs were given. BlackBerry has put up more info about the Z3 on its blog.

Additionally, Chen also officially confirmed that a device known as the Q20, aka the Classic, is in the works, and will be coming out alongside BES 12 sometime before the end of the year. The Q20 will be a QWERTY device that will feature the “tool belt,” which means you’ll see a classic trackpad and function keys. Speaking of BES12, the new update will be backwards-compatible to older BlackBerry devices and will support iOS, Android and Windows Phone.

Lastly, Chen confirmed that BlackBerry is working on a few high-end phones for later this year, but he was unable to offer any additional details at today’s event. However, we shouldn’t expect to see any wearables from BlackBerry anytime soon; Chen has no plans — “at least, not yet.”

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BBM coming to Windows Phones this summer

BlackBerry is slowly, but surely covering all its bases in an effort to turn BBM into a cross-platform messaging monster. The quest to return the standard bearer to its former glory started with iOS and Android, but this summer it’ll be coming to Windows Phones as well. According to the Canadian company it will ship with all the same functionality as its counterparts on other OSes, including stickers and voice. More importantly though, BBM Groups (which allows you to chat with up to 50 people at once) and Channels will be included as BlackBerry works to fight off challenges from the likes of WhatsApp and Hangouts. Sadly that’s all the details we have for now, but hopefully Waterloo will lock down a release date sooner, rather than later.

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Via: SlashGear

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BBM beta now offers stickers, because that’s really what it needs to catch up

BlackBerry adds stickers to BBM

Good news! BlackBerry has finally figured out how BBM will pose a threat to messaging giants like WhatsApp. It’s… stickers. Yes, of all the things the company could do to improve its chat app, it’s introducing the same sort of purely cosmetic decals that everyone else offers. As with rival services, those using a new BBM beta can buy themed sticker packs to express themselves in creative (and very cutesy) ways. In all fairness, the addition may help BlackBerry court younger chatters. However, we hope that the phone maker has a lot more up its sleeve than this — me-too upgrades can only go so far.

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Via: The Verge

Source: Inside BlackBerry

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T-Mobile will give you $250 if you trade in your old BlackBerry for a new one

BlackBerry Curve 3G

If you hadn’t heard, BlackBerry chief John Chen isn’t happy with T-Mobile — he believes the carrier fired a shot across the bow when it enticed BlackBerry users to switch phones in a recent promotion. To mend that bruised relationship, the magenta network is launching a limited-time trade-in offer that gives loyal users a strong incentive to upgrade. As of February 21st, T-Mobile will give you $200 for your existing BlackBerry, and $250 if you’re upgrading from a T-Mobile BlackBerry to a BB10 device like the Q10 or Z10. The payout is the same regardless of the device’s age, so long as it’s in good condition; if you’re still rocking a Curve 3G, you’ll get the full amount. Market share trends suggest that there won’t be too many people upgrading to new BlackBerrys, but the olive branch is welcome all the same.

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Via: Recode

Source: T-Mobile

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BlackBerry releases BBM for Android for Gingerbread devices

True their promise, BlackBerry has just made its messaging, and now voice call, app available to more Android users. Now even those running on an ancient Android 2.3 version will be able to enjoy the rebirth of the BBM phenomenon.

Late last month, BlackBerry announced that it was working on a Gingerbread-compatible version of its messaging app. This, according to the company blog, was in response to requests from users who are still stuck with that version of Android. And that represents a considerable amount of potential users, as the last Android distribution chart puts the entire Android 2.3 line at 21.2 percent of the market pie.

BlackBerry is making true its word today and delivering an update that adds support for Gingerbread. At the moment, there is no word if there will be some BBM features unavailable on this older Android platform, though we can presume that there will be feature parity across all Android versions. That means that Android Gingerbread users will also be able to enjoy BBM Voice and Channels that was just rolled out to the public last week.

This also means that existing BBM users will have a larger pool of friends and strangers to pick from, perhaps using the new Find Friends feature. Owners of Android 2.3 devices can simply go to Google Play Store and look for the official BBM app, or hit the link below, to download this updated version.

Download: BBM on Google Play Store
SOURCE: BlackBerry

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Smartphones and Sex: How the tech in your pocket affects life in (and out of) your pants

Smartphones and Sex: How the tech in your pocket affects life in (and out of) your pants

One week ago we asked you about how your smartphone factors into your dating, romance, and sex lives. And while we expected quite a response, we didn’t expect this much of a response. More than 17,000 of you took part in our survey in the past week, and the results were interesting, to say the least.

There are plenty of interesting correlations and divergences based on age groups and platform choice. Some are not at all surprises, others caught us by surprise. For example…

  • When on a date, those aged 18 to 24 years are 35% less likely to actively use their smartphone while on a date than those 35 and older.
  • Opinions of relationship statuses drop quickly, with 27% of ages 18 to 24 believe them to be asking for trouble, vs. more than half of those 55 and older. BlackBerry users are 22% more likely to believe so.
  • All age groups hold an ideal of an in-person break-up being ideal and using a phone call, text, or email as less so, yet the actual rates show hypocrisy in practice, though the younger you are, the more likely you are to have been in a breakup over text messages.
  • Nearly half of those who carry sensitive photos of their significant others on their smartphone do so without the protection of a PIN or password.
  • Men are 50% more likely to want to receive frequent sexts than women (no surprise there).
  • Universal platform agnostic solutions like MMS, email, and Skype are the most popular for sexting, except that BlackBerry users show a preference for BBM. Skype is also the overwhelming favorite for cybersex, although iPhone users prefer FaceTime by a slim margin.
  • Men are 78% more likely to look at porn on their smartphones than women.
  • BlackBerry, iPhone, and Windows Phone all have a shortage of porn apps, so users get their porn predominately through web browsers, Tumblr, and Reddit.

Check out the huge interactive infographic below (it’s huge, it’ll probably take a little while to load) — several of the charts allow you to cycle through data displayed by age groups and platform choice — and let us know what you think in the comments!

(View in browser)

    



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BBM For Android v2.0 Goes Live: Free Voice Calls Between BBM Users, New "Channels" Feature, Content Sharing, And More

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Say what you will about BlackBerry’s viability as a company, but the Canadian smartphone firm’s messaging app is quickly shaping up into a powerful client. Today, BB announced that BBM 2.0 for Android is out now, and it adds a whole lotta stuff to the app’s growing feature resume.

Of most interest to users is probably BBM Voice, which is exactly what it sounds like – you can now call BBM contacts directly from the app (still no video chat, though).

Done With This Post? You Might Also Like These:

BBM For Android v2.0 Goes Live: Free Voice Calls Between BBM Users, New "Channels" Feature, Content Sharing, And More was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

    

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Big BBM 2.0 upgrade brings massive list of features

If BBM has yet to fall out of favor with you in terms of messaging apps, then you’ll want to listen up: a pretty big upgrade is headed our way. Most full version jumps tend to be underwhelming in this day and age, but Blackberry wanted to make sure BBM 2.0 blew everyone away. Let’s not even waste any time digging into the following list of new features:

  • BBM Voice: free voice calls between BBM users on Android, iPhone and Blackberry 10.
  • BBM Channels: public BBM groups for fans of specific topics to get together and chat. Available for users and businesses alike.
  • Location Sharing: powered by Glympse, you can share your location with whomever you want.
  • Improved photo, voice notes and other attachments
  • Dropbox integration for sending and receiving files to and from contacts
  • 100 new emoticons to choose from
  • Increased BBM group size: now up to 50 people

It sounds like Blackberry spared no expense in bringing this upgrade to the masses, though some contend they could be doing even better. Specifically, we’re still missing video-based features that those on Blackberry 10 have been enjoying for quite some time.

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Those features include quick video messaging, as well as full-on Skype-esque video calls. Let’s hope our boys in Waterloo have some of that in store for what should be a great 3.0 update at some point down the line. In the meantime, stay on the lookout for the upgrade as Blackberry says it should be rolling out at some point later today. Get a look at the new goods in the video above.

[via Blackberry]

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BBM Channels and Voice come to Android and iPhone

BBM Channels on Android and BlackBerry 10

BBM is about to become considerably more useful to Android and iPhone users — even if they don’t have many people on their contact lists. BlackBerry now says that its promised Channels and Voice support should reach the BBM apps for both platforms later today. As on BlackBerry 10, Channels lets you chat about hot topics with fellow users, whether or not they’re already friends. Voice, meanwhile, does exactly what it says on the tin: you can make internet-based calls to your BBM buddies. Whether or not you find much use from these two biggest features, you may still appreciate other significant additions like Dropbox file sharing integration, Glympse location sharing and expanded BBM Groups. We’ll let you know when we see the Android and iOS upgrades reach their respective app stores.

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Source: BlackBerry, App Store, Google Play

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IDC: Android takes top honors for 2013 with a 78.6 percent market share

The latest market share report has been released by IDC. This report is offering a look at the numbers for the fourth quarter of 2013, and also for the year as a whole. Some of this, such as how the charts are being dominated by Android will come with little surprise. But there is also the other side of the chart to consider, the bottom, which details the further decline of BlackBerry.

The list has Android sitting on top with iOS, Windows Phone, BlackBerry and Others rounding out the top five. In regards to BlackBerry, while technically in the fourth position overall, they are actually sitting with slightly less market share as opposed to the other category. The Q4 2013 market share for BlackBerry is 0.6 percent. This accounts for 7.4 million in terms of shipments, and had BlackBerry dropping from 3.2 percent for the same quarter in the previous year.

Shifting back to the top of the list and we see Android with 78.1 percent market share. This is an increase from 70.3 percent as compared to Q4 2012. Rounding out this list is iOS with 17.6 percent, Windows Phone with 3.0 percent and the others category with 0.7 percent. Interestingly, iOS dropped a bit in the year-over-year, going from 20.9 percent for Q4 2012.

smartphones

Moving away from the Q4 2013 numbers to the year as a whole and we saw a similar structure. That is to say the market share numbers for all 2013 include Android, iOS, Windows Phone, BlackBerry, and Others. The associated percentages are as follows; Android at 78.6, iOS at 15.2, Windows Phone at 3.3, BlackBerry at 1.9, and Others at 1.0. Both Android and Windows Phone saw growth as we moved from 2012 to 2013.

Android went from 69 percent in 2012 to 78.7 percent in 2013. Windows Phone went from 2.4 percent to 3.3 percent for the same time period. Otherwise, iOS dropped from 18.7 to 15.2 percent, and BlackBerry dropped from 4.5 percent to 1.9 percent going from 2012 to 2013.

Breaking Android down and we once again saw some dominance from Samsung. The IDC report mentioned how “Samsung led all Android vendors with a commanding 39.5% share of shipments for the year.” Huawei held the number two position, however honorable mentions came for LG, Lenovo, Coolpad, and Sony. And interestingly, now that the Motorola and Lenovo deal has been made official, it should be interesting to see where Lenovo sits in the charts for 2014.

SOURCE: Business Wire

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BlackBerry Messenger adds ‘Find Friends on BBM’ feature to Android

find friends on bbmTo say that the release of BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) was underwhelming would be a bit of an understatement; while it retained many of the things that BlackBerry users have gushed about, it was decidedly old-fashioned compared to some of our more recent messaging clients like Whatsapp. Though perhaps the most infuriating aspect of picking up BBM for the first time was the inability to add your old contacts and friends by any conventional means. Instead, you were burdened with the old fashioned BlackBerry PIN, which I would liken to physically handing out your phone number. Fortunately, BBM is being updated with a feature called ‘Find Friends on BBM’ which should make a whole world of difference to those who have hankered for it.

From tomorrow (or today for some of you), the BBM app will be updated on Android to include ‘Find Friends on BBM’, a feature which will allow you to quickly assess which of your friends are already on BBM and give you options to send them your PIN. As for the friends that haven’t fortuitously keep BBM on their phones after its October release, or tried it at all, you can send them an invite via email or SMS.

Personally, I think this update is too little, far too late. This feature should have been available from day one and its effect may be minimal now seeing as many people will have simply uninstalled it when they realised how unintuitive it was to add people. Maybe I’m wrong and this will fuel a resurgence for BBM, which may do considering that BlackBerry says they are working on BBM v2.0, but I think BBM has a lot of catching up to do before it becomes a number one choice among messaging circles.

What do you think about ‘Find Friends with BBM’? Are you likely to try BBM out again now that this feature has been added? Let us know what your opinion of BBM is.

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BBM updated to allow you to ‘Find Friends’ on the service or invite others

BlackBerry Messenger got an important update today. Rather than have to share a PIN to chat with another BBM user, we now have the ability to search for our contacts via a ‘Find Friends’ feature. Handy, but like most things BBM, it may be too late to the party.


The Find Friends utility will pop up when you first install the app, but is also available to existing users. Under the “Invites” menu, FIndFriends has made it’s home for use whenever you like. The feature is in the newest version of BBM, which is available now. If you don’t see it right away, BlackBerry says it will be rolling out in the next 24 hours or so.

This works with your contacts that already use BBM, or those who don’t yet. Those who do will simply be added to your BBM contact list. Those contacts without BBM will be sent an invitation, at your request. Handy, but too late for anyone to care?

This is a feature that comes standard on just about any social app. From Twitter to Facebook, Hangouts to — well, anything — this is standard fare. BlackBerry is once again behind the times, and trying to make it seem as though they’ve caught up. They haven’t. Finding friends on BBM is great, so long as your friends still use it after perusing it when it came out, then getting back to reality — and messaging apps people use. BlackBerry is also noting they have a refresh to the app coming up soon, but offer no timetable for release.

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BlackBerry Reminds Everyone That BBM Still Exists, Issues Minor Update to Help Find Friends

Did you know BlackBerry was still around? Their stranglehold on the smartphone industry may be a distant memory, but the beleaguered company is still committed to supporting its existing products. Need proof? One of them, BlackBerry Messenger for Android, is the target of a minor update today.

The headline feature of the update is Find Friends, which allows you to identify those of your friends and family that use BBM (and are probably too embarrassed to admit it).  The app will scan your contact list for BBM users, and then allow you to send a PIN invite. You can invite non-users, but they’ll only receive an e-mail message or SMS to download BBM.

BlackBerry continues to devote resources to improving BBM, which makes sense considering the service’s relative popularity overseas. The company teased version 2.0 of the app, which it says will include “lots of great new features.” And BlackBerry will soon release a version of BBM compatible with Gingerbread devices.

Any BBM users excited about today’s update? Any BBM users period?

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