Tagged With rim

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With the launch of the last-chance Z10 around the corner, Blackberry is giving itself a pep talk to keep those hopes high. According to CEO Thorsten Heins, the iPhone is hardly in the race Blackberry's fixin' to win, because it's old news.

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Everybody knows what's at stake for BlackBerry. The Z10 is its shot to stop its considerable bleeding and shut everyone up. But launching a brand new OS with brand new hardware isn't easy. And it's even harder to match expectations when both have been delayed again and again.

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In 2011, BlackBerry introduced something it thought would be a killer feature: an Android emulator. It was called the App Player and the reason it wasn't hugely popular is that it only ran a limited selection of features and only supported Android 2.3 apps. Now, though, BlackBerry has seen the error of its ways, and issued a pledge to improve the App Player with the help of Android 4.1.

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Today BlackBerry demoed what it's calling BlackBerry Balance, a clever way of separating one's personal and work lives in one device. You don't see it as much these days but carrying two phones — one for business, one for pleasure — was commonplace not too long ago. I remember having a BlackBerry 6200 alongside my HipTop/Sidekick 2; and I'm sure a lot of you remember those days as well.

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RIM's day of reckoning is almost here. Tomorrow, the once-mighty Canadian company will officially unveil its new BlackBerry 10 operating system, along with new hardware. It's a chance at rebirth, reinvention, and getting out from under its walking corpse reputation. But for that to happen, RIM needs to prove it's back on the right track.

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This is the new BlackBerry 10, two weeks from its official release. And while visually it looks like a cross between Android and iOS — without any of the spiffiness of Windows Phone — RIM's make-or-break operating system is surprisingly nice. Fast, with clever user interface touches, a centralised hub for all user activity and a good browser.

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Innovation is alive and well at RIM, especially in the anti-creepshot vector. A new patent, issued to the company yesterday by the USPTO, would cut down on "inconspicuous" camera shots like the ones taken by corporate espionage enthusiasts and total pervs.

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The hole RIM has found itself in is deep, dark and doused in despair. And as much as the company's gambling on its new BB10 platform to pull itself up, an operating system is only as good as the phones running it. So take a good, hard look at this supposed BlackBerry N-Series device. It could be RIM's best shot at survival.

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A band of tech giants — including Apple, Samsung and Nokia — has sent a letter to US Congress, urging it to free more spectrum for mobile data. The Hill reports today that the companies explained to congress that authorising new spectrum auctions is "timely and relevant" to current debates over the "fiscal cliff".