BlackBullet - A native client for Pushbullet enters beta

Pushbullet is a pretty fantastic iOS and Android app that automatically shows you all of your phone's notifications right on your computer. However, there's no BlackBerry 10 version for people to make use of but stepping up to the plate to fill that void is BlackBerry developer QTHelex with a beta of their native BlackBullet app.

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BlackBerry OS 10.3.0.1052 device simulator now available

Whether you're a developer looking to test your apps against BlackBerry OS 10.3 or simply just want to take a look at OS 10.3, you can now download the latest device simulator from the BlackBerry website. Previously it sat at OS 10.3.0.698 but has now been updated to OS 10.3.0.1052. Keep in mind, if you plan on giving it a look you will need some VMWare tools in order to run it all but you can find the full details on the BlackBerry Developer site along with the download links for you respective computer operating system. Shame that BlackBerry Blend link doesn't fully work quite yet.

Download the BlackBerry OS 10.3.0.1052 device simulator

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Sprint rolling out OS 10.2.1.3023 for the BlackBerry Q10

If you own a BlackBerry Q10 and are on Sprint, you'll want to go ahead and check for software updates. Reports from the CrackBerry Forums and notice on the Sprint website indicate the carrier has started pushing out OS 10.2.1.3023 for the BlackBerry Q10. While many folks are still going through the changes in the forums, according to the Sprint documentation, here's what you can expect is fixed and changed.

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7digital Music Store for BlackBerry 10 updated to v5.69.6.2

Although an update to the 7digital Music Store for BlackBerry 10 came last week, it seems as though it didn't fix all of the issues folks were having and as such, another release has been made available through BlackBerry World. This release is appearing as v5.69.6.2, which is just a point release higher than the previous one but it does have a slightly different change log to go with it.

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In this day and age we are all security conscious and our information. That was why, not too long ago, we told you about an application that allowed users to exchanged encrypted messages with your contacts or decrypt messages sent to you. Based on OpenPGP data encryption method, PGpgp safeguards your text and email communications using a private and public key.

Recently, the developer released a minor update containing two features asked for by users.

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BlackBerry appoints Dr. Sandeep Chennakeshu President of BlackBerry Technology Solutions Business Unit

Here's a way to kick off a Monday. BlackBerry has now announced they've opened up a new portion of business called BlackBerry Technology Solutions business unit and heading up BTS is Dr. Sandeep Chennakeshu, who formerly worked as President of Ericsson Mobile Platforms and CTO at Sony-Ericsson.

Executive Chairman and CEO John Chen said, "I am very pleased that Sandeep has joined BlackBerry to lead BTS. QNX, Certicom and Paratek are strategic and technically innovative assets with significant potential to address the much wider global markets for secure, reliable communications and embedded applications. Project Ion creates an application platform that enables secure and collaborative machine-to-machine communication required by the growing number of end-to-end, Internet of Things applications. Our broad global portfolio of 44,000 patents is of value to several industry segments. Combining all these assets into a single business unit led by Sandeep will create operational synergies and new revenue streams, furthering our turnaround strategy."

The BTS business unit comprises BlackBerry's innovative technology assets, including: QNX (embedded software), Project Ion (Internet of Things application platform), Certicom (cryptography applications), and Paratek (RF antenna tuning), as well as BlackBerry's extensive patent portfolio.

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Deal of the Day: BlackBerry Z30 Transform Hardshell Case

The BlackBerry Transform Shell not only protects against those unforeseen drops, but also folds out to prop up your device in both portrait and landscape positions. It's made of a durable polycarbonate that has 4-corner protection and leaves access to all your important features. Colors include black and white, available for 63% off today only!

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BlackBerry Z3 now available to buy in Egypt

Z3

Just a quick heads up for you folk in Egypt that have been holding out for the BlackBerry Z3. The low cost BlackBerry 10 device is now on sale so it's time to go shopping!

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We've known for some time now that the next version of BlackBerry 10 (10.3) will come with the BlackBerry Assistant built in. Having the ability to use voice commands on a BlackBerry is certainly nothing new, however from my experience it's always been more hassle than it's worth.

That's all set to change when the BlackBerry Passport hits the scene running BlackBerry 10.3. It's very early days on whether the BlackBerry Assistant will give the likes of Siri, Google Now and Cortana, for Windows Phone, a run for their money and even if it is as productive - is it a feature that you will use on a regular basis?

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How to share photos using the BlackBerry Z3

BlackBerry Z3

If you are one of the lucky folk that have picked up the BlackBerry Z3, I suspect you may well be new to BlackBerry 10. You're more than likely an ex BlackBerry OS user but the two operating systems are so different and it can sometimes be a small learning curve.

As a BlackBerry Z3 owner you'll be a social creature as it's in our nature these days. That probably means using your new beloved BlackBerry to take plenty of photos and share them with friends via a wide selection of methods, from BBM to social networks.

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From the Editor's Desk: Almost there

From the Editor's Desk: Almost there

So earlier, I was sitting here looking back at some of the posts about the BlackBerry Classic and the BlackBerry Passport. Going through it all, it seems as though we've been talking about those two particular devices forever. Realistically, its only been since June that things started popping, when BlackBerry CEO John Chen unveiled the BlackBerry Classic and the BlackBerry Passport. Sure, the rumors have been going longer but the real excitement only came in June, when things got real.

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Productivity apps are tools that we use daily to maximize our time. They can bring enhanced functionality to existing features or create new ones to get the job done. In the case of the former, one BlackBerry 10 developer focused his attention on creating a full-featured voice recorder application.

While a case could be made that it already exists on BlackBerry 10, albeit hidden away in the Remember app, nothing wrong with improving up on it. Echo is the result of those labors, and besides sporting a nifty cassette tape interface, boasts a multitude of features not found in the BlackBerry 10 one. All of which are designed to better categorize, arrange, share, secure, and manage your voice notes.

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MagicPhotos - 1000 free copies up for grabs

MagicPhotos

It may be Sunday and for many of you a day for kicking back and relaxing (if you are that lucky), but that doesn't mean we can't give away an awesome app.

The developer of MagicPhotos has been in touch with us and has kindly offered 1000 copies of the BlackBerry 10 photo editing app for free.

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Hot Wheels - Track Builder

I can't say I was ever into Hot Wheels myself - maybe I'm too old and missed it as a kid, but when I saw Hot Wheels - Track Builder in the Amazon Appstore I had to check it out on my BlackBerry Z30. And I'm glad I did, as it's pretty darn sweet - and free.

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Deal of the Day: BlackBerry F-S1 Battery for Torch 9810, 9800

Flight delays, power outages, longer-than-expected trips; you can't always recharge your BlackBerry Torch when you'd like to. But with an extra BlackBerry F-S1 Battery on hand, you can always talk, type, and work as long as you need to. Keep it in your pocket, briefcase or purse and stay connected, powered up, and ready to get the job done. Grab yours today for 86% off!

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Here's another look at how some apps will run on the BlackBerry Passport

Although we've seen some apps running on the BlackBerry Passport previously, we also know the device recently received an OTA update to improve a few things as well and that apparently included how the Android runtime works on some Android apps and improvements to some of the core BlackBerry 10 apps.

As we mentioned before, @seb997 has his hands on a BlackBerry Passport and after giving it a quick review, he's now found some time to show off some of his favorite Android and BlackBerry 10 apps running on the device along with giving a run down of how each particular one works.

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Verizon now offering $60 single line plan with unlimited talk and text, 2GB of data

If you happen to be looking for a new smartphone plan and don't need a lot of data and only have one line to worry about, Verizon has now dropped a new plan that might be of interest to you.

As part of a new promo, you can now get unlimited voice minutes, unlimited text messaging and 2GB of data for $60, you'll want to pay attention to the overage charges though that are set at a whopping $15/1 GB. Obviously not going to be an option for everyone but it's sure to fit some needs.

If you happen to have a smartphone with Verizon Edge, you will receive $10 off the monthly access on the single line plan. If you're looking for the full details, Verizon has kindly set up a FAQ section on their site to view.

Thanks, John!

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As part of the promotion BlackBerry India is currently offering selected applications for 50% off from now until August 25th.

One of those applications is Money Plus, which we have featured before for both the PlayBook and in the roundup for BlackBerry 10. If you are not familiar with Money Plus, it is an expense tracking and financial management application. As a feature rich application for tracking your transactions and accounts and includes the ability to categorize, backup, password protect, schedule transactions, supports various currencies including India's rupee and Indonesia's Rupiah, and reconciliation.

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A while back in the BlackBerry App Roundup I highlighted a GPS tracker to log your activities such as hiking, walking, and biking called GPS Tracker: Retrace. It was simple, effective and got the job done with respects to logging. Since that time the developer incorporated several new changes and features in Retrace including those suggested by users.

This latest version, which now stands at 2.0.1.1, is actually a complete rewrite of the application. Not only does it reflect the new BlackBerry 10.3 visual style but boasts improved performance, the ability to retrace old routes, adding waypoints, tracking specific activities, and calorie tracking.

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As promised when we ran our poll just the other day, asking if you would be ordering the BlackBerry Passport as soon as you can, here are the results (from 24 hours after publishing) which turned out slightly different to how I thought they would.

As you can see below, we have a clear winner and that's that most folk are certainly very interested in picking up the Passport. However, the gap between this decision and BlackBerry fans waiting on device reviews is smaller than I expected.

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