Blackberry OS 6.0 – Is it enough?

There have been numerous leaked videos of the upcoming Blackberry 9800 slider.  The device brings a new form factor to the Blackberry, but most importantly incorporates a brand new OS, 6.0.  The combination of 6.0 and the 9800’s touch screen mimics the experience found in competing phones running Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android, but is it enough?

I have blogged before about how I believe that RIM has to re-write their OS to become competitive in the rapidly changing and multimedia-centric smartphone market.  OS 6.0 represents RIM’s strongest move yet in this direction, but is still based on their traditional Java OS.  Crackberry.com has links to sample videos of the new phone/OS combination in the links below.  (Note: that some of these videos have been removed, and most can be found here.)

These videos show an impressive improvement in Blackberry functionality and features, but I am not convinced it is enough.  If you look at the market, Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android battle on hardware and software features.  They are constantly trying one-up each other with enhancements like video-conferencing (iPhone) or wireless hotspot (Android).  RIM is behind on touchscreen functionality and 6.0 is a catch up release for them.  It breaks no new ground but rather brings RIM a touch interface that is similar to what Android and iOS have been offering since inception.  Where is the innovation in the platform? Continue reading Blackberry OS 6.0 – Is it enough?

Choices: iPhone, WebOs or Android and why RIM must rewrite

The Mrs is looking to take the leap into the world of smartphones.  Up until this point, she has used a traditional cellular phone and an old fashioned Palm Z22.  The combination has worked okay, but the requirement for frequent manual syncing of the Z22 due to recurring data loss is frustrating.  It is time for a change.

As I am reviewing options, the realization has struck me that what really matters is the OS.  I define the OS as not just the software that runs on the phone but also the supporting infrastructure.  Apple has masterfully innovated through their iPhone OS and complementary applications such as iTunes and the AppStore.  Apple created an entirely new and highly profitable business model with these products.  They then ported the same technology to two additional platforms in the iPod Touch and the iPad and further extended their reach.  In fact their OS and infrastructure was so revolutionary that they have made few changes to it since the launch in 2007 and it still is the leader.

Continue reading Choices: iPhone, WebOs or Android and why RIM must rewrite

Slingbox on a Blackberry

I am huge fan of my Slingbox.  For those of you who are unfamiliar with it, a Slingbox is a device that will stream video from your home Internet connection anywhere in the world.  All you need to do is connect it to your cable box and your Internet connection and you are good to go.  You can remotely control the cable box and tune to any channel remotely.  The system works very well and I often use it at home to stream to my laptop while my wife is watching something else.

The one thing that I was missing on my Slingbox was a way to stream the video to my new 3G Blackberry Bold.  How cool would it be to be able to stream video to my Blackberry wherever I am?  Well, it appears that I am in luck.  Sling Media appears to be launching an open beta of the Blackberry Client for Slingbox late this year according to this post.  I am definitely going to try this out.

Another quick Blackberry post

I posted a few days ago about why I chose the Blackberry Bold over the Storm.  After having used the Bold for a couple of days now, I continue to think that I made the right choice.  It provides a very easy to use typing experience and I barely missed a beat from my previous 8700C to the Bold.

I was interested to see that phonewreck recently wrote a review comparing the Blackberry Storm and Blackkberry Bold.  Their conclusion is similar to the one that I reached in my brief comparison of the two platforms.  It is a good read and is worth checking out.