BlackBerry Offers Idea Subscribers Exclusive BIS 2G Data Plan

Users with BBOS 7 devices would be able to avail BIS 1GB 2G plan at Rs. 83 per month with an annual rental plan of Rs. 999 (taxes extra).
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Leading Magazine Declares BlackBerry OS 10.2 “World’s Best Mobile OS”

BlackBerry OS 10.2 is being heralded as “The World’s Best Mobile OS” even as we prepare to launch an even better, updated version.

India’s largest-selling computer publication, Digit Magazine, pitted BlackBerry 10.2 against other leading mobile operating systems: Android 4.4, iOS 7.1.2, and Windows Phone 8.1. “We called for the flagship phones from all brands, for the obvious reason that we wanted the smoothest experience in a test that was going to take months of man hours,” the magazine said in its August 2014 cover story.

(Also this month, our BlackBerry Z30 phone also won Gold in the Best in Biz awards.)

The magazine broke down the evaluation “into the components of what we use mobile phones for, and how we use them the most,” it explained.

It found that while people often think themselves adept with their preferred OS, “there are always hidden features we’ve never really thought of or used earlier.”

digit score sheet

Weighing the Categories

Digit took as much of an impartial, objective look at each OS as possible.

“Once we’d decided what we needed to look at (which basically covers over a thousand individual features or settings in each of the OSes), we then proceeded to list each and every setting / feature that came into each category,” it said. “We awarded weights and scored each task, and then totaled it in what could only be called the biggest nightmare of all – Google Spreadsheets.”

It’s an impressive spreadsheet, and way too long to completely detail here, but the takeaway is that BlackBerry dominated in many key areas:

  • Email: “How much better can a BB10 device really be than an Android device, for e-mail? Well, 60% better, judging by our sheet! The BB 10.2 powered Z30 got away with an impressive score of 83.2%, leaving Android and iOS at a distant 53.07 and 46.6 per cent respectively. BBs are truly are built with email in mind.”
  • Managing Contacts and Calling: “The OS that outshone all others here was BlackBerry (we’re starting to see a trend here . . . Part of the secret to BB’s success in this department has to do with its contact management capabilities.”
  • Photography: “We found BB pipping the likes of Windows Phone and iOS to take the top spot here . . . Out of the box . . . the others are a poor match for BlackBerry.”
  • Search: “Surprisingly, Google isn’t the master of search on your phone. That title goes to BlackBerry, with a whopping 85.3 percent score!”
  • Video: “Videos are as integral a part of our lives as photography and the ability to record, watch and share videos is an essential one. BlackBerry, again, surprises us by winning this category handsomely. This was mainly due to the fact that it offers quite bit of editing ability out of the box.”

There’s More where that Came From

“This was by far the most comprehensive test we have ever done,” said Robert Sovereign-Smith, Digit’s Executive Editor. “BlackBerry OS 10.2 is a deserved winner of the title.”

The thing is, with OS 10.3 right around the corner, they’ll be busy all over again.

The BB OS update will feature many notable improvements, from an updated user interface with more polished icons, endless folders, and more app icons displayed per screen to a revamped BlackBerry Hub with greater level of customization and BlackBerry Assistant, which will give Siri a run for its money on BlackBerry Passport.

Additional improvements include tweaks to the camera, calendar, and notification systems, as well as the highly-anticipated implementation of the Amazon Appstore as a pre-installed app.

Either way, the real winner is the user, and it’s only going to get better from here.


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Setting Info-Tech Research Group Straight

 

BlackBerry continues to fight against inaccurate and misleading claims – this time against Info-Tech Research Group. Read more to get the facts against their egregious claims.


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Verizon Offering Big Dollars for Businesses to Upgrade their BlackBerry Devices

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Now is proving to be a good time to take advantage of BlackBerry’s leading communication tools for business, especially if you’re on Verizon.

Up through September 30, 2014, customers with a business account can turn legacy devices into cash and receive a Bill Incentive Credit of up to $150 per line for upgrading to BlackBerry 10 devices, including the Z10, Z30 and Q10.

That $150 per device can add up quickly when multiplied across a business with numerous upgrades, and can be applied to just about anything, from signing up for BBM Protected to purchasing BlackBerry technical support services, and includes free licenses for BES10 licenses and complimentary technical support through January 31, 2015.

BGR’s Jacob Siegal writes, “There are still plenty of businesses that depend on the Canadian company’s devices and services in order to function . . . A partnership with Verizon could be huge for enterprise customers.”

Meanwhile, ValueWalk’s Aman Jain said, “It’s an important step for the company . . . BlackBerry [is] strengthening [its] enterprise segment.”

News of the deal was also picked up by Bidness Etc., AllMediaNY, Fierce Wireless, OppoTrends, and Wireless Week.

CrackBerry’s news coverage has generated 170+ responses, with many comments just like these:

CrackBerry Verizon comment 1
CrackBerry Verizon comment 2
CrackBerry Verizon comment 3

BB OS 10, the recent recipient of the mobile OS crown from India’s largest technology magazine, Digit, certainly is worthy of more users, and with the 10.3 update just around the corner, the deal will only get sweeter.

On top of that, the Z30 was recently awarded Gold in the 2014 Best in Biz International for Consumer Product of the Year.

If you have a business account with Verizon, take advantage of this deal right away, and give your business an edge in productivity and communications with BlackBerry.


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Alleged BlackBerry Passport Review Details Specifications and Features

The review was published by a Czech website that claims the Blackberry Passport will launch in Europe in October at $760 (roughly Rs. 46,000).
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IRCTC Launches Ticket Booking App for BlackBerry 10

A senior IRCTC official said the BB10 app is user friendly and easy to operate, and that users can plan a journey with a tap of a finger.
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Engadget Readers Endorse BlackBerry Hub as Solution to ‘Messaging’s Mission Impossible’

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Over on popular tech blog Engadget, we saw a well-meaning, thoughtful article on Tuesday, “Messaging’s mission impossible: One inbox to rule them all.”

The author, Nicole Lee, pines for an integrated experience to stay on top of all of the various communication channels vying for attention on smartphones today.

She describes a scenario where she gets a text message from her husband, then a Facebook message from her mother, with a direct message on Twitter from a friend followed by a conversation with a colleague on Google Hangouts.

“Realizing it would be easier to handle all of these with a computer, I flip open my laptop so I can chat with everyone simultaneously,” Lee writes. “Within the span of a few hours, I’ve chatted with four different people on four completely different messaging platforms. And the juggling doesn’t stop there.”

Unnecessary Juggling

On many mobile platforms, Lee’s fretting about “too many inboxes” makes a lot of sense. As she puts it: “I shouldn’t have to have a dozen different messaging apps on my phone to talk with all the people in my life.”

Thankfully, Lee doesn’t have to! There’s no need for juggling. Not with BlackBerry Hub, our unified messaging platform for BlackBerry 10 devices. It saves you time by marrying your e-mail with social networks and your work messages and your personal, and also letting you read and respond to your messages from within the Hub itself.

With integration with calls, texts, and e-mails to apps ranging from Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to WhatsApp, Foursquare and BBM, there’s really no need to leave the Hub.

(Also check out all of the great BlackBerry Hub tips on our BlackBerry Help blog.)

Lee does acknowledge BlackBerry Hub’s existence, but lumps it in with other solutions about which she claims: “None of these really live up to the dream of that one, true universal inbox for everything. Which is, sad to say, probably more fantasy than reality.”

Not so, as many people were quick to point out in the 220+ comments.

Crowdsourcing the Comments

“Maybe you should look at the BlackBerry Hub again,” offers BlkScorp33. “I NEVER have to open the actual apps to post a status, or reply to anyone.”

Engadget Hub  Comment 1

Commenter deathcommand went for the face-palm: “You know BlackBerrys have had a universal inbox for like a decade and a half now right?”

Engadget Hub Comment 2

“[If] you want functionality like this, move to a platform that offers it,” writes user kaydpea, going for a lighter touch. “There’s a reason why people using BlackBerrys make the claim that it gets things done quickly, it’s because it does. The unified inbox (Hub) on BB10 is THE reason I’m using BlackBerry.”

Engadget Hub Comment 3

“If I’m playing a game and get a notification, I swipe up and to the right and I’m then in the Hub,” AnotherBillJ writes, explaining in detail how Hub streamlines messaging for him: “At no time have I opened an email application or a Facebook app, I’m still in the Hub . . . No other phone does it that easily.”

Engadget Hub Comment 4

Meanwhile, bilaalsaghir pointed out that Hub works with Android messaging apps running on your BlackBerry smartphone (did you know that hundreds of thousands of Android apps can already be installed and run on BlackBerry 10 devices today? And that Amazon’s Appstore will come integrated into the 10.3 update for even easier access to Android apps?)

Engadget Hub Comment 5

There were many other positive comments about the Hub – check them out yourself.

Your One-Stop Shop

I think it’s a safe bet that the author is more aware today of how powerful a tool the BlackBerry Hub is.

I didn’t even bring up the Priority Hub, which does just what its name implies; creating a priority feed that can learn from your behavior and/or be customized to pull out the most important of your bazillion messages – key for us in this Age of Information Overload.

Things are great now, and will only get better. The BlackBerry OS 10.3 update coming on the Passport and other devices will roll out with the voice-enabled BlackBerry Assistant and other new productivity features.

So, if I was to create a catch-phrase as a response, it would be this:

There’s a Hub for That.


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Leaked BlackBerry 2014 Roadmap Tips Upcoming Launches

The roadmap also details software updates for BB10 OS, apart from the new Affordable, Classic, Innovative, and Prestige market segments.
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WhatsApp Says It Has Crossed 600 Million Monthly Active Users

WhatsApp says it has added 100 million users since its 500 million monthly active users milestone in April, but its growth is not completely unchallenged yet.
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BlackBerry Passport Square-Shaped Smartphone’s Specifications Tipped

The BlackBerry Passport has been tipped to come with a Snapdragon 800 chipset, 3GB of RAM, and a 4.5-inch LCD display.
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