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Today at the Blackberry BB10 Event RIM has officially Renamed itself to just Blackberry. The BlackBerry World store will play host to a rich library of movies, TV shows and music, as well as more than 70,000 BlackBerry 10 apps at launch, including  Skype, Kindle, WhatsApp, SAP, Angry Birds, Facebook and Foursquare.

US carriers announcing pre registration today, but no concrete release dates. Expected availability in March. “By the end of February, we will be completing lab testing with 110 carriers worldwide.”. The Z10 will be available from tomorrow (31St January) in the UK, UAE from the 5th February. Also Alicia Keys is Blackberry’s new Global Creative Director.

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Inside the Z10 is a 4.2 inche device, On the back of the BlackBerry Z10 is an 8-megapixel camera, capable of taking 1080p stabilized video. Front camera is an 2-megapixel, You’ll find a healthy compliment of feeds, speeds, and other things that rhyme with feeds and speeds.  The phone is powered by a dual-core CPU clocked to 1.5GHz. The device has a fat 2GB of RAM alongside 16GB of internal storage (that can be expanded, of course, all the way up to 48GB with the use of a 32GB microSD card). Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC, an accelerometer, magnetometer, gyroscope, and ambient light sensor alos with the ppi of 355 using a 1,800 mAh battery.

Also Blackberry showed off the second BB10 device but this one has a physical keyboard. The Q10 sports a 1.5GHz processor with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of onboard storage, which is expandable with a microSD slot. The 3.1-inch touchscreen has 330ppi, 720 x 720 display.

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Lenovo is reportedly considering  the possibility of entering a partnership with BlackBerry maker Research in Motion (RIM).

Chief financial officer Wong Wai Ming said at the World  Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland that the Canadian firm is one of several  potential companies they could from ties with to boost their mobile division.

“We are looking at all opportunities – RIM and many others,” Bloomberg quotes the executive as  saying. “We’ll have no hesitation if the right opportunity comes along that  could benefit us and shareholders,”

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RIM CEO Thorsten Heins recently  sparked speculation that the company is considering moving away from hardware  development when he admitted  the sale of this division is one of several options currently under  consideration.

However, he insisted that the launch of the BlackBerry  10 operating system on January 30 is the immediate priority.

BB10 is  viewed by some as RIM’s last chance to remain competitive in the marketplace  following a dismal year marred by below-par sales and reputation-damaging  service outages.

RIM is also said to be mulling over the possibility of  licensing out BB10 to third-party manufacturers, but a move in this direction is  dependent on the success of the platform.

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RIM announced earnings for their fiscal Q1 today, and also delayed the release date for new BlackBerry 10 smartphone devices.  We bring you the story.

ROM Office

RIM (Nasdaq: RIMM; TSX: RIM) announced earnings today for fiscal Q1, which ended June 2, 2012.  Sale were $2.8 billion USD, off 33%/ $1.4 billion USD, from the prior quarter.  The net loss was $518 million, and another target for 5,000 job reductions was announced.  At the same time, RIM announced another delay for the shipment of new BlackBerry 10 smartphones, now expected in calendar Q1 2013, a 90 day delay.  Here are some of the highlights:

Q1 Results

Revenue for the first quarter of fiscal 2013 was $2.8 billion, down 33% from $4.2 billion in the previous quarter and down 43% from $4.9 billion in the same quarter of fiscal 2012. The revenue breakdown for the quarter was approximately 59% for hardware, 36% for service and 5% for software and other revenue. During the quarter, RIM shipped 7.8 million BlackBerry smartphones and approximately 260,000 BlackBerry PlayBook tablets.

GAAP net loss for the quarter was $518 million, or $0.99 per share diluted, compared with a GAAP net loss of $125 million, or $0.24 per share diluted, in the prior quarter and GAAP net income of $695 million, or $1.33 per share diluted, in the same quarter last year.

“Our first quarter results reflect the market challenges I have outlined since my appointment as CEO at the end of January. I am not satisfied with these results and continue to work aggressively with all areas of the organization and the Board to implement meaningful changes to address the challenges, including a thoughtful
realignment of resources and honing focus within the Company on areas that have the greatest opportunities,” said Thorsten Heins, President and CEO. “Our top priority going forward is the successful launch of our first BlackBerry 10 device, which we now anticipate will occur in the first quarter of calendar 2013. In parallel
with the roll out of BlackBerry 10, we are aggressively working with our advisors on our strategic review and are actively evaluating ways to better leverage our assets and build on our strengths, including our growing BlackBerry subscriber base of approximately 78 million, our large enterprise installed base, our unique network architecture and our industry leading security capabilities.”

BlackBerry 10 Update

The successful launch of the BlackBerry 10 platform and the delivery of high quality, full-featured BlackBerry 10 smartphones remain the Company’s number one priority. Over the past several weeks, RIM’s software development teams have made major progress in the development of key features for the BlackBerry 10 platform; however, the integration of these features and the associated large volume of code into the platform has proven to be more time consuming than anticipated. As a result, the Company now expects to launch the first BlackBerry 10 smartphones in market in Q1 of calendar 2013.

“RIM’s development teams are relentlessly focused on ensuring the quality and reliability of the platform and I will not compromise the product by delivering it before it is ready. I am confident that the first BlackBerry 10 smartphones will provide a ground-breaking next generation smartphone user experience,” said Thorsten Heins, President and CEO. “We are encouraged by the traction that the BlackBerry 10 platform is gaining with application developers and content partners following the successful BlackBerry Jam sessions that we have held around the world since the beginning of May. Similarly, the reception of the BlackBerry 10 platform by
our key carrier partners has been very positive and they are looking forward to going to market with BlackBerry 10 smartphones in the first quarter of calendar 2013.”

A net loss on a contraction of revenue is not surprising given the strategic issues that this firm faces, but another delay of BlackBerry 10 until after the all-important Christmas shopping season is not good news.  RIM needs to succeed with the BB10 launch, and that product needs to get into the field as soon as possible as competitors continue to develop their platforms.  I am starting to wonder if they have what it takes to commercialize BB10 on phones and succeed.  It would seem to me that blaming coding issues calls into question the effectiveness of the project management.  There is no way around it: this is bad news.

RIM (RIMM on the NASDAQ) closed at $9.13, essentially unchanged.  In after-hours trading, RIMM is off $1.56, or 16.99%, at $7.61.  The 52 week high for this stock is $33.54, so at $7.61, has lost 78% of its value since hitting that high point.

This story is not over and we’ll continue to bring you updates.

[button link=”http://www.nasdaq.com/symbol/rimm/real-time” style=”info” window=”yes”]RIMM NASDAQ Real Time Quote[/button]

[button link=”http://press.rim.com/content/dam/rim/press/PDF/Financial/FY2013/Q1_FY2013_Press_Release.pdf” style=”download” window=”yes”]RIM Q1 2013 Earnings Release[/button]

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RIM announced the release of BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.1.0.560 to developers.  Read on for details!

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RIM  released the latest beta version of BlackBerry PlayBook OS, version 2.1.0.560, recently.  Here is what RIMm had to say about this beta:

Today we are releasing a beta of BlackBerry® Tablet OS 2.1.0 for developers to test their applications with. Developers can test using devices or a simulator, and there are some items that I think will be of particular interest.

The WebKit implementation on BlackBerry Tablet OS continues to keep pace with the latest updates to the WebKit project. There are numerous updates included which keep the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet at the forefront for Tablet Browsers in the market, as seen by our HTML5 Test Score (391 and 10 bonus points).

This latest score at html5test.com is a bit out of date, but I’m sure that won’t last long once you’ve got your hands on the beta. The beta is an improvement of 18 points and 1 bonus point over 2.0.1, most due to the inclusion of the FileSystem API.

There are three major enhancements to the Android™ Runtime in 2.1.0:

  • Each Android app will now run in its own window. This greatly improves the user experience and consistency among the other application runtimes.
  • Access to the Camera hardware is now supported for Android apps, allowing many more application types to work on the BlackBerry® PlayBook™ tablet.
  • In-App Payment is now supported through the BlackBerry Payment SDK, so Android applications can include virtual items for sale in their applications.
But wait, there’s more!

There are a couple other items I noticed that I think will appeal to some developers. Full device encryption is now supported, so that the whole device and personal partition can be secure. If you develop an application that deals with sensitive personal information, you may want to include a suggestion to your users that they turn this feature on. Finally, there is a minor update I noticed which developers asked for and will be well received: screenshots are now saved in lossless PNG format. That should help quite a bit when you want to promote your application and add screenshots to the BlackBerry App World™ storefront.

For those of you wandering around the rest of the BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.1 beta, you’ll notice a few extra enhancements geared towards end users such as:

  • Portrait support for Email, Calendar and Contacts
  • Improved folder support including IMAP folder support

The other 2.1 features will come full steam when the new OS is commercially released. The 2.1 Android SDK will be released in beta coinciding with the OS release, and the 2.1 Native SDK will be posted next week, with an update to the Adobe® AIR® SDK to come shortly after.

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I  reviewed this tablet here and and found it lacking in email and calendar apps, so these changes are welcome indeed.  If you are a developer, go and get your beta and test your apps!

[button link=”https://developer.blackberry.com/devzone/register” style=”download” window=”yes”]Register and Download PlayBook OS Beta[/button]

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Research In Motion (RIM) today announced a stylish new smartphone for socially-connected customers. The new BlackBerry Curve 9320 smartphone features all the core BlackBerry messaging and social-centric features that keep people connected, and it offers global 3G connectivity backed by long battery life to allow users to make the most of their day.

DeviceFront

“The new BlackBerry Curve 9320 is designed to make it incredibly easy for users to stay socially-connected,” said Carlo Chiarello, EVP, Smartphone Business at Research In Motion. “The new BlackBerry Curve 9320 will be especially popular with customers upgrading to a smartphone for the first time and existing Curve customers looking for a step up in speed and functionality.”

The BlackBerry Curve 9320 has everything a customer needs to stay in touch with the people and things that matter most to them. It features a dedicated BBM key, bringing the power of RIM’s popular mobile social network up in an instant, as well as the best keyboard in its class for quick and easy typing. It includes a built-in FM radio, allowing users to tune into their favourite local stations, and listening to the FM radio does not require a data plan or use data services. Designed to allow both 3G connectivity and long battery life, customers can get up to 7 hours of talk time or up to 30 hours of FM radio listening or music playback with headphones.

Customers can easily interact with their social network in real time, using preloaded apps for Facebook and Twitter. The new Social Feeds 2.0 app is also preloaded, allowing users to post updates to multiple social networks simultaneously and capture updates from news sources (RSS), social apps and instant messaging apps all in one consolidated view. The integrated camera includes a flash and supports video recording, and pictures can be tagged with their location thanks to the smartphone’s built-in GPS.

The BlackBerry Curve 9320 comes with the new BlackBerry 7.1 OS, which supports features such as Mobile Hotspot and Wi-Fi calling where available.* Parental Controls is a brand new, on-device feature that provides parents and guardians with simple options to help protect children by restricting access to specific functions, features and applications.

Pricing and availability of the BlackBerry Curve 9320 will be announced in conjunction with RIM’s distribution partners.

[button link=”http://worldwide.blackberry.com/blackberrycurve/9220-9320/specifications.jsp” style=”info”]Learn more from the BlackBerry website[/button]

BlackBerry 7.1, the latest version of the BlackBerry smartphone OS, is now available for customers in the UK.

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The update is available for the BlackBerry Bold 9900, BlackBerry Torch 9810 and 9860, BlackBerry Curve 9360 and 9380 smartphones, and the Porsche Design P’9981 smartphone from BlackBerry. Starting today, customers can upgrade their smartphones to BlackBerry 7.1 for free over the air or using BlackBerry® Desktop Software.

BlackBerry 7.1 incorporates BlackBerry Tag, a new way to share content with other BlackBerry customers using near field communications (NFC) technology. By tapping two NFC-enabled BlackBerry smartphones together, customers can share contact information, pictures, a URL from the browser or documents. BlackBerry Tag can also be used to invite a friend to BBM or to pair their BlackBerry smartphone with an NFC-enabled Bluetooth® device.

With BlackBerry 7.1, customers can be productive from virtually anywhere. Now they can turn their BlackBerry smartphone into a mobile hotspot that can be shared by up to 5 Wi-Fi-enabled devices, including laptops and tablets.

A new Battery Saving Mode feature has been added which allows customers to extend the battery life of their BlackBerry smartphone when it is most needed. The new feature provides customers the option to have their smartphone settings automatically adjusted when the battery power reaches a level pre-defined by the customer. Some of the settings the Battery Saving Mode will automatically adjust include the brightness level, backlight timeout, and the mobile hotspot auto shutdown timer.

Customers with a BlackBerry Curve 9360 or 9380 smartphone will find a nice surprise with the BlackBerry 7.1 OS update in the form of an FM radio. The FM radio is already built in to the Curve 9360 and 9380 models and BlackBerry 7.1 adds a new app that allows them to tune in and enjoy local FM radio stations. Listening to the FM radio does not require a data plan or use data services.

BlackBerry 7.1 is available for download today. For more information about the BlackBerry 7.1 OS update, visit http://uk.blackberry.com/update/

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RIM introduced a new accessory, the BlackBerry Music Gateway, last night at the BlackBerry Solutions Showcase.

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The new BlackBerry Music Gateway lets you wirelessly play music to your home or car stereo from your BlackBerry smartphone, BlackBerry PlayBook tablet or any Bluetooth enabled device.

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Once connected to the BlackBerry Music Gateway, customers are able to control their music from up to 30 feet away from the stereo, without missing a single beat.

The BlackBerry Music Gateway will begin shipping in June 2012 and will be available on www.shopblackberry.com for US$49.99.

Angry Birds Space is now available for PlayBook in BlackBerry App World.

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After a giant claw kidnaps their eggs, the Angry Birds chase it into a wormhole and find themselves floating in a strange new galaxy – surrounded by space pigs! Luckily the Angry Birds have super powers of their own…

Angry Birds Space features 60 interstellar levels on planets and in zero gravity, resulting in spectacular gameplay ranging from slow-motion puzzles to lightspeed destruction. With regular free updates, new in-app purchases, brand new birds, brand new superpowers, and a whole galaxy to explore, the sky is no longer the limit!

Angry Birds Space features 60 interstellar levels on planets and in zero gravity, resulting in spectacular game play ranging from slow-motion puzzles to light speed destruction.

FEATURES:

• 60 interstellar levels

• Regular free updates

• Brand new birds and new superpowers

• Zero-gravity space adventures

• Trick shots using planets’ gravity

• And hidden bonus levels

Cost: $4.99

[button link=”http://appworld.blackberry.com/webstore/content/10303″ style=”download”]• Download Angry Birds Space from BlackBerry App World[/button]

Research In Motion (RIM) announced that the new BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.0.1.358 is available now.

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A new version of the BlackBerry® PlayBook™ OS – v2.0.1.358 – is now available to all users. This free update can be downloaded over-the-air from your BlackBerry® PlayBook™ tablet.

The BlackBerry PlayBook OS v2.0.1.358 contains many updates including:

  • Browser enhancements to address performance with some websites
  • Improvements to support Android apps
  • Optimizations to Video Chat, PIM and BlackBerry Bridge applications
  • And much more!

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A series of updates to BlackBerry apps will be released over the coming days to make it even easier for users to stay connected with their BBM contacts.

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RIM today announced that Facebook for BlackBerry smartphones, Twitter for BlackBerry smartphones, BlackBerry Travel, BlackBerry App World and BBM Music will now include BBM connectivity, allowing users to keep in touch with their friends, share experiences and discover new things from within their own BBM community easily.

Facebook and Twitter Apps Integrated with BBM
Facebook for BlackBerry smartphones (version 3.0) and Twitter for BlackBerry smartphones (version 3.0) now allow users to share their Facebook status or latest Tweet with their BBM friends right from within the app, why update three status’ individually when you can update them all in one go?

BlackBerry Travel Goes Social
It is now easier than ever to update those who matter most about your travel plans. The new BlackBerry Travel app (version 2.5) is now BBM-connected, allowing travel plans to be shared with a few select friends or the entire BBM community.

App Sharing Made Simpler
With BBM (version 6.2) and BlackBerry App World (version 3.1.2), users can easily update their BBM profile to let their friends know about the great new app they’ve just downloaded from BlackBerry App World. With this updated version of BlackBerry App World, users can also instantly share info about their favourite app or a list of their installed apps with friends using BlackBerry Tag.

BBM Music – Music Discovery Made Better
With the enhanced BBM Music (version 1.2), discovering music and making friends is easier than ever. New BBM Music friends can be recommended to users right from within the BBM Music app itself, making it easier for users to connect and expand their music collection. The new feature even allows users to sample others’ songs before accepting new contacts on BBM Music.

BBM Made Better
In addition to integration with BlackBerry App World, BBM (version 6.2) offers a polished, enhanced and more personal experience. It includes a new selection of animated avatars, a simpler way of updating one’s personal message in their profile, and now allows users to quickly send voice notes.

Availability
Twitter for BlackBerry smartphones version 3.0 is available now and Facebook for BlackBerry smartphones version 3.0, BlackBerry Travel version 2.5, BlackBerry App World version 3.1.2, BBM Music version 2.1 and BBM version 6.2 are scheduled to be available for download over the next ten days on BlackBerry App World (www.blackberry.com/appworld).   Stay tuned to BlackBerry social channels to confirm when each app becomes available.

Research In Motion (RIM)  today introduced the BlackBerry Mini Keyboard, a new accessory for the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet.

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The BlackBerry Mini Keyboard is ultra portable and comes complete with a stylish convertible case that doubles as a stand for the tablet.  In addition to a full QWERTY keyboard, it offers an integrated touchpad that allows users to navigate and control the BlackBerry PlayBook as easily as using the touch screen on the tablet itself. When the keyboard is active, the PlayBook tablet’s virtual keyboard remains hidden, freeing up 100% of the display for the task at hand.

· Powerful Multi-touch Control – The BlackBerry Mini Keyboard comes equipped with a touchpad that supports BlackBerry PlayBook gestures. The touchpad also offers additional gestures similar to the standard mouse and touchpad controls on a laptop, including a single tap to simulate a mouse click, a two finger tap to right-click, and a two-finger up or down swipe to scroll vertically.

· Ultimate Portability – The BlackBerry Mini Keyboard is ultra-portable and lightweight, measuring less than 6mm thick.

· Security – The BlackBerry Mini Keyboard connects to your BlackBerry PlayBook tablet via Bluetooth®, and features 128-bit encryption to keep the data passed between keyboard and tablet secure.

· Powered and Ready When You Need It – The BlackBerry Mini Keyboard conveniently uses the micro-USB charger that comes with the BlackBerry PlayBook (one less charger to carry), and the keyboard battery lasts up to 30 days on a full charge.

· Third Party App Support - The BlackBerry Mini Keyboard is a great productivity enhancer. It works with the new BlackBerry PlayBook 2.0 Messages, Contacts and Calendar apps as well as Documents To Go, and provides an optimal user experience for third party apps such as Citrix Receiver, which allows users to remotely access their Windows desktop and apps from the tablet.

The BlackBerry Mini Keyboard is now available for pre-order internationally at www.shopblackberry.com for US$119.99.

If you are a BlackBerry PlayBook owner you can get two free games in celebration of the launch of BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.0.

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To celebrate the launch of BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.0 this week, ALL BlackBerry PlayBook users can download TWO FREE games – Asphalt 6 Adrenaline HD and Modern Combat 2 Black Pegasus HD – free of charge from now until June 20th.

Compliments of BlackBerry PlayBook users can complete the mission of one of the most acclaimed FPS games for smartphones in Modern Combat 2 Black Pegasus HD, and feel the thrill of arcade racing like never before in Asphalt 6 Adrenaline HD.  Enjoy an immersive gaming experience on the PlayBook’s 1 GHz dual-core processor offering blazing speed and glorious graphics.

Both games are available from BlackBerry App World now – http://appworld.blackberry.com/webstore/search/free%20playbook%20games/

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