Six intriguing features in BlackBerry 10

Six intriguing features in BlackBerry 10

Troubled RIM now has a bright spot in its future: a release date for the RIM BlackBerry 10 platform.

The company said Monday that it will launch BB10 on Jan. 30 alongside new smartphones that will run the new OS.

That date is earlier than a Jeffries report that claimed that the new OS would launch in March. The future of BlackBerry 10 was thrown into question earlier this year when RIM announced that it would delay its launch of the OS from the fall to early 2013. According to RIM, the delay was due to the "large volume of software code" that needed to be ported to the new platform.

While RIM still ranks among the top smartphone platforms, the company has struggled mightily within the United States, slipping below Apple's iOS and Google's Android as the top smartphone platforms. In July, for example, comScore ranked RIM third with a 9.5 percent market share of all U.S. smartphone platforms, in between Apple at 33.4 percent and Microsoft at 3.6 percent .

Still, there’s a lot to like. In our hands on with BlackBerry 10, PCMag's Damon Poeter found some other nifty features that he liked: the ability to move the green focus box around the field when preparing to take a shot, for example, which seemed like a handy little solution for those times when the automated focus tool gets confused. There's also a picture mode called Time Shift that basically snaps a bunch of quick pictures of your subject, then generates a radial menu that you can scroll through to find the shot you want—great for capturing that perfect expression on a squirmy subject, like a baby, for example.

As consumers and enthusiasts, one can only hope that RIM rises back to give Apple, Google, and Microsoft a run for its money. In January, we’ll find out if it can.

BlackBerry Hub: Think of the BlackBerry Hub as an improved inbox. RIM describes the Hub as follows:"All messages, notifications, feeds, and calendar events come into the BlackBerry Hub and no matter what the user is doing with the device, with a simple gesture, they can peek into the Hub at any time.

 


BlackBerry Flow: RIM describes this as "a seamless user experience which provides full control and flexibility in every moment and every touch. Flow keeps the momentum going so that user goals can be achieved quick and efficiently". It also means that apps work in a consistent manner.

 


Time Shift: BB10's camera app has a cool new feature called Time Shift that captures multiple shots of a given subject, then lets you quickly scroll through them on a radial menu to pick the perfect picture.

 


Blackberry 10 Keyboard: "The keyboard suggests words based on predictions, and when the user swipes the words upwards they nicely animate to the text field where they will end up. It’s a nice moment of charm and gives BlackBerry 10 a unique input experience," according to RIM.

 


BlackBerry Balance: This feature allows users to use their BlackBerry 10 device for work and personal use, with the ability to firewall both areas of the device. It also allows for remote management, like wiping company data, if ordered by your IT manager.

 


FIPS Approval: RIM said BlackBerry 10 has reached FIPS 140-2 certification, which means government agencies can deploy BlackBerry devices after the OS is released. This is the first time a BlackBerry OS has been certified before its launch.

 

Copyright © 2010 Ziff Davis Publishing Holdings Inc



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