Introducing the BlackBerry OS Super Page!

Introducing the BlackBerry OS Super Page!

A couple weeks back we did a bit of a shuffle in our BlackBerry forums to try and better organize all the crazy crackiness that goes on (not an easy task). The biggest changes came to our BlackBerry Operating System and Desktop Management Software Discussion forums, where we added some new dedicated forums, including ones for BlackBerry Native Apps and BlackBerry Desktop Manager and we added Hybrids to our OS Beta forum (Storm OS talk still in the Storm forum).

One of the most exciting new features we implemented at the same time is new thread that rounds-up all of the latest official, unofficial (leaked / beta) and known OS builds out there for your BlackBerry smartphone. Put together by yester18 and maintained by our mod team (thanks guys!), you'll want to bookmark our BlackBerry OS Super Page. It's all right there. Spread the word!

Visit the BlackBerry OS Super Page

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Try SmrtGuard and you could Win a BlackBerry Curve 8520

It's no secret we're big fans of SmrtGuard here at CrackBerry, so when we got word of the contest they're holding to give away a new BlackBerry Curve 8520 we just had to pass it on to the community. You can jump over to their contest page for the full details, but essentially all you need to do to get in for your chance to win is either try or buy SmrtGuard before August 18th and you'll automatically be entered into the draw.

To take advantage of a SmrtGuard ten day free trial, you'll have to grab SmrtGuard via their site, or if you've decided now is the time to subscribe to SmrtGuard for real, you can also do so via our CrackBerry App Store. You can follow the links below for more details. Good luck!

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Plazmic 4.7 Updated With Tour 9630 And 8520 Support!

Need I really say more folks? But, just in case, Plazmic has released a new update to their content developers kit which now includes support for the 9630 Tour and Curve 8520. It requires you to download the patch and the CDK in order for it to function. Now, go get your theme on all you theme devs with an official CDK release. Big ups to CrackBerry forums moderator Amazinglygraceless and forums member SevereDeceit for digging this up for us!

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    Must Have Accessories for the BlackBerry Tour Owner

    Contest: Leave a comment to this blog post listing your five favorite BlackBerry accessories and we'll pick one lucky winner to receive a $100 coupon for free accessories from ShopCrackBerry.com!

    So you've had your new BlackBerry Tour for a while now (or maybe only a few days!) and hopefully have already stumbled upon our First Five Must-Have Apps for the BlackBerry Tour article. Now that your new BlackBerry is loaded up with useful and fun apps, the next way to enhance your BlackBerry ownership experience is with accessories.

    BlackBerry accessories come in many shapes and sizes and serve many different functions to help out get more out of your smartphone. Items like skins, cases and holsters help protect your BlackBerry in style and provide a means of carrying around your BlackBerry that suits the way you want to use it. Bluetooth headsets, speakerphones and stereo headphones allow you to go hands-free while talking or listening to music, while a bluetooth accessory like the BlackBerry Music Gateway allows you to play your BlackBerry's music on your home's stereo system. Extended life batteries help your BlackBerry go longer while a desktop stand or charging pod makes it easy to charge your device and turn it into an awesome bedside clock. And that's just scratching the surface....

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    BlackBerry Developers Conference Registration Now Open!

    Time to get ready folks, the BlackBerry Developers Conference registration has finally opened up and now is the time for developers to shine! Nov 9-12 in San Fransciso will be a great time to see what's up and coming from RIM developers and a great chance to see what RIM has been working so hard on over the past few months with releasing new API's for everyone to make use of. I have to say I am excited to see what's in store this may give us all a great insight as to where RIM is headed with a lot of things. Hey 

    The developer conference would be a great start to kick off a lot of new ideas, possibly some new innovations so please RIM--make it happen. For those interested in more about the developers conference and what it consists of I'll borrow a little of what RIM invisions for it.

    Where it all comes together.

    There's never been a more exciting time to build mobile applications for the BlackBerry® platform. Or a better time to be a part of the BlackBerry Developer Conference. With over 1,000 participants convening from around the world, this is the place you'll want to be!

    Building on last year's success, the conference has been expanded to four full days – giving you even more opportunities to learn firsthand how to accelerate the development process, leverage familiar tools, take your consumer and business applications to market and meet face-to-face with the experts at Research In Motion (RIM).

    You don't have to be an expert yourself - you just have to be an enthusiast. So pack your ideas, your know-how and your passion for developing and come build with us in San Francisco, California from November 9-12.

    What you'll take home:

    • The inside scoop on developing for the BlackBerry platform and the very latest in software, hardware and tools from RIM and its partners
    • Invaluable information directly from RIM experts who will personally share their expertise
    • First-hand experiences from developers who have successfully created, integrated and managed wireless applications
    • Best practices from industry leaders to shortcut development cycles and drive new applications to market

    There ya have it, folks and if you register before September 18th, 2009 and you get $200 off and if you attended either WES 2009 or last years developer conference you will also get a $100 alumni credit for a total of $300 savings.

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    Contest: 100 Free Copies of TipCalc

    TipCalc

    Sure there are loads of tip calculators out there, but none have the functionality or smooth look of TipCalc. From Toysoft, TipCalc is the coolest tip calculator around. You can calculate 0% to 100% tip, up to 9999 split bills, see exactly what the tip and total is for each person, save tip to history database, send history database as email and more. TipCalc even supports both portrait and landscape modes on the Storm. The application is available for the Storm, Curve 8900 and Tour. Available for $0.99 from the CrackBerry App Store, Toysoft has given us 100 copies to give away free. Just leave a comment on this post to enter. Contest ends this Sunday at Midnight PST. Please only leave one entry - multiple submissions won't count.

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    Ubertwitter Beta 4 Now Available for Download

    Ubertwitter Beta 4 Now Available for Download

    Everyone's favorite Twitter client Ubertwitter has been updated to Beta 4 today. The updates keep getting better and better and are helping to keep Ubertwitter in the front of the pack. The new updates include multiple account support, ability to block users, faster photo uploads and more. Ubertwitter notes there are still some features that didn't make it into this release, but you can be sure they will roll out another update soon. The app isn't even out of beta yet and they are doing a great job of putting all they can into the features list. If you haven't used Ubertwitter yet you should definitely check it out. Head over to Ubertwitter.com from your device to download.

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    Verizon Officially Releases OS 4.5.0.138 for Pearl 8130 and Curve 8330

    We don't want you to think that we forget about the old devices when new ones like the Storm or Tour pop up. We try and keep spreading the love as much as we can. With that, Verizon has officially released BlackBerry Operatng system version 4.5.0.138 for both the Pearl 8130 and Curve 8330. This isn't the newest OS for these devices, but its the latest official release. If you have been holding out now is your chance to upgrade. You can head over to Verizons download page at vzw.smithmicro.com/blackberry from your PC to get started.

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    E2 Today-  Awesome Free Theme For Your BlackBerry Bold!

    While looking through the BlackBerry Bold themes forum, I came across this free Bold theme from EThemes that really caught my eye due to its simplicity and sweet icons. It's a 15 icon vertical scroller that has hidden today and calendar integration, which in my opinion really adds to the theme. Awesome work as usual from EThemes. While this one is on the house, be sure to check out all the premium themes offered up as well in the Shop CrackBerry App Store from ETheme - they offer up many solid themes.

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    Skyfire Web Browser for BlackBerry Smartphones Resumes Alpha Testing – Latest Version 3.5

    SkyFire has resumed its testing of their Alpha version on BlackBerry devices after being forced to place things on hold due to some leakage of previous versions. At this time, SkyFire has sent out to its testers Alpha 3.5 Build 1.0.0.12799. Some stuff was added such as downloading files to your device from within SkyFire and some stuff was removed, such as streaming media for now until SkyFire can optimize it better. Overall, it's still slow and clearly Alpha but hey, it's getting there. Full release notes after the jump.

    [ BGR ]

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    BlackBerry to Have Native Web Browser as Good as iPhone's Safari by Next Summer? And other BB Browser Tid Bits...

    I just finished watching a pretty comprehensive video evaluation put together by equity analyst Chris Umiastowski that was published earlier today. If you have 17 minutes to kill, you can jump on over and watch the video in full for yourself. The premise of this briefing was to demonstrate how BlackBerry is doing compared to Apple in the consumer smartphone space in terms of core features, and to point out some of RIM's strengths and shortcomings and highlight the things they'll need to hustle to improve quick in order to maintain their sales momentum moving forward.

    Though it's not said in the video where the analyst's info is coming from, it's pretty obvious that some of the statements made must have come via RIM (during an interview with somebody higher up the chain would be my guess).  A few of the most interesting points made from a CrackBerry Addict's perspective were in regards to the web browser and include:

    • RIM acknowledges it needs to improve panning and zooming within the web browser and that the issue is an on-device one - it has nothing to do with connecting through the NOC. The key issue is memory management (not enough device RAM). RIM says it's a fixable problem and expects to have a browser on par with the iPhone's Safari browser by next summer.
    • Javascript support will be enabled by default within the web browser this fall. Currently it ships with the JS support setting disabled (enabling JS support tends to slow things down... remember my Bold's Buggered browsers post which was written nearly a year ago?).
    • And very interestingly, RIM gave a reason as to why WiFi on a BlackBerry can often be very slow (not any quicker than using Edge/3G). Apparently RIM has diagnosed the culprit and it has to do with being too conservative on BlackBerry battery management in that the device puts the WiFi radio to sleep too often. Not many details are given here (other than devices being released in upcoming launches should hopefully have much faster WiFi transfer rates) but it's quite possible that if you're using your WiFi browser at the same time that you're connected to Edge/3G but your device doesn't seem to be browsing any faster than if WiFi was turned off, that well, WiFi may actually be asleep and you are actually on Edge/3G.

    The presentation goes beyond web browser talk, but the points above are what I found most interesting and newsworthy (news to me anyways!). For the full nitty gritty, be sure to check out the full video.

    [ Source

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    Calling all BES Admins...

    Win a Free License of BoxTone Essentials 500 - Enter Here! >>

    BoxTone has been hard at working creating some great user tools for all you BES Admins out there and have just unveiled, their latest product, BoxTone Essentials. BoxTone Essentials is everything you need for a full on monitoring system for your BES environment, targeted towards smaller oragnizations with modest budgets but still need to have the safety and security that is offered to larger organizations.

    BoxTone Essentials -- part of the BoxTone mobile user management platform -- automates core monitoring and management activities, proactively alerting you to mobile service issues then helping you to find, fix and validate them in less than 3 minutes. Features include:

    • End-to-End Visibility - via a Dashboard that displays in real time the health of individual and groups of mobile users, BlackBerry Enterprise Servers, Exchange and Domino mail servers and wireless carriers, and, when needed, a drill-down for more detail and to take action.
    • Proactive Alerts - via SmartAlerting that warns you of pending issues and risks – such as high rescan rates, hung threads, carrier outages, SRP outages or VIP low memory -- so you can fix them before users call
    • The Right Answer - via a User Console that in plain language enables you to pinpoint and resolve an issue immediately with simple instructions (no hunting through logs or searching online forums)
    • Click to Fix - via 1-Click Fix-It for the most common service issues – such as reset password, send service books, wipe device -- right from the User Console without the need to jump to other tools.

    With the information on how BoxTone Essentials (view Press Release) can help you now out of the way, let's move onto the contest! CrackBerry and BoxTone have teamed up and are offering you (and your organization) the chance to win $10,000 worth of BoxTone software courtesy of BoxTone. Read on for full contest rules.

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    Contest: Leave a comment to this post for your chance to win one of ten VQ CarFinder Bundles!

    A few weeks back we checked out VQ CarFinder, a great application that helps you remember where you left your car. I got my hands on the Bluetooth Car Charger to use with this app and I've had a great time playing around with it. The app automatically remembers where you left your car based on the connection with the Bluetooth charger (if you have a vehicle with Bluetooth you can use that as well).

    The good folks of VQ are currently running a "Where The %@&# Did I Park??!!" contest where users can submit videos or stories of parking nightmares and be entered to win a BlackBerry smartphone and a CarFinder license. Head over to 4carfinder.com for more details or check out the submissions on their YouTube page. VQ has also given us 10 CarFinder bundles to give away. The bundle includes a full VQ CarFinder software license as well as a Bluetooth Car Charger (retail value of $64.98). To be entered to win, just leave a comment on this post. Contest ends this Sunday at Midnight PST. Please leave only one comment - multiple submissions won't count.

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    RIM Launches BlackBerry Developer Blog

    RIM Launches BlackBerry Developer Blog

    RIM has launched a new blog site for BlackBerry Developers today that will give the developer community informative content and be an integral part of the BlackBerry Zone experience. The blog, located at http://www.blackberry.com/developers/blog, will cover three main areas:

    • Technical Discussion and Insights - Including best practices for BlackBerry development, code snippets, and general technical information on how to make applications users will come back to time and again.
    • Market Insight - Discussions of trends and opportunities in mobile development and mobile applications that RIM sees from breathing the mobile industry every single day.
    • Developer Engagement - RIM wants to get more engaged with regional and local developer communities all around the world, from Australia to Argentina and everywhere in-between. The BlackBerry Developer's Blog will be used to communicate events in each region and opportunities to meet other BlackBerry developers.
    Developers will be able to use the blog to interact with each other and should find it a great resource. This should help out a great deal those planning to attend the BlackBerry Developers Conference in November, allowing more developers to collaborate and get answers to questions that will help in their respective projects.

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    Sprint BlackBerry Tour 9630 Review

    Sprint BlackBerry Tour 9630 Review

    The new BlackBerry Tour smartphone launched on the Sprint Network last month, and it was a highly anticipated device for many Sprint users. Up until the launch of the Tour, the only options for BlackBerry smartphones for Sprint users were the Curve 8330, 8830 World Phone, and the Pearl 8130. While these are all great devices, none of them could compare to the BlackBerry Bold that was launched on GSM carriers almost a year ago.

    Sprint had some initial launch issues with device shortages, and even a little mix up with a Sperizon device being sent out. Seems things to have simmered down a bit, and now it's time to get down to the nitty gritty with a device review. So sit back and relax, and let the good times begin.

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    Contest: Leave a comment to this post for your chance to win a free copy of Mancala. 50 Free Copies to be won!!

    Jerome of BBerryGO dropped me an email yesterday to let me know he has released Mancala for BlackBerry. The game of Mancala is simple to play and is an amazing time killer. You move your "stones" around the board and try to caputre as more than your opponent. The clear graphics and vibrant colors make this game easy on the eyes. Perhaps the best feature of Mancala is that you can have a multiplayer game with a friend over BBM (Note - does not yet work properly with BBM 5.0). I tested this out with Bla1ze yesterday and it runs very well - much better than I had imagined. Mancala runs on almost all devices is available for $0.99 at ShopCrackBerry.com.

    To kick off the release, we have 50 free copies of Mancala to give away! Just leave a comment on this post to be entered. Contest ends this Sunday at Midnight PST. Please only leave one comment - multiple submissions won't count.

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    Member Story: Open Letter to BlackBerry Messenger - He's Just Not That Into Me
     

    This post comes from forums member Anastasia Beaverhousen. The original post can be seen here in the CrackBerry Forums. If you have BlackBerry story of your own, send it in to editorial(at)crackberry.com

    Dearest BBM,

    It's time we had a talk.

    I know you're just acting out. I know you see my relationship with SMS and email. I know you're jealous. I know you're hurting. But they're just friends - I swear. It's just work messages! They'll never mean as much to me as you do. So let's talk about why you keep toying with my heart.

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    Review - LaterDude & LaterDude Pro for BlackBerry

    You’d think that, with a BlackBerry smartphone at the ready, I’d have no problem getting back to people quickly and efficiently. Sadly, this isn’t always the case. If I had a loonie every time my wife asked me “Have you gotten a hold of so – and – so yet?” I would probably have enough money to get the entire world out of the red. For those who have been directly affected by this issue, I am truly sorry. I’m not sure what it is; perhaps I’m too busy and tend to forget. I do tend to start thinking of other projects when already working on one, and then move on. Maybe I’m easily distracted by the slightest- ooooo….shiny…

    Luckily, being an avid BlackBerry abuser, there’s always an application or two out there that can help you out in almost every situation (who needs to fend for themselves anyway?!). In this case, I’m turning to LaterDude and LaterDude Pro to lend a hand. They offer to streamline the process of creating reminders, making it faster than doing it using your calendar or tasks applications. It’s either that, or stick Post-it notes on my BlackBerry’s screen.

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    T-Mobile BlackBerry Bold 9700 Glimpsed in the Wild!

    Seriously, I need to travel more often. It wasn't so long ago that the 'javelin' (Curve 8900) was still unavailable that I spotted three in the same airport while flying to NYC. This time around while traveling home from vacation I was able to spot and get a few precious moments of hands-on time with the device above (single capture taken on my Verizon Tour) ... of a T-Mobile BlackBerry Bold 9700.

    Wow, what a device. I've already reviewed the BlackBerry "onyx" (9020 device model at the time, now the BlackBerry Bold 9700) and basically concluded it was the ultimate "traditional" BlackBerry. Compared to the unit in that initial review, this one has a trackpad (vs. trackball), more of a silver chrome vs. charcoal (could be that AT&T will get the charcoal version) and the leather back on the battery door that we've previously featured on the blogs. It also felt different in the hand compared to my early model - this unit felt very sturdy (production ready?!). Couple that feeling with the T-Mobile branding and let's hope this baby is due sooner than later.

    So for all the T-Mobile customers out there who didn't rush out to buy the Curve 8520, how do you feel about the BlackBerry Bold 9700?? Finally visual proof of a 3G BlackBerry on T-Mobile!! Big thanks to the BlackBerry Gods for being so good!

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    Leaked: BlackBerry Curve 8520 OS 4.6.1.286!

    Leaked: BlackBerry Curve 8520 OS 4.6.1.286!

    Here is a little bit of a treat for all you new 8520 Curve owners out there, a fresh new OS for ya's to load up. Having just gotten my 8520 today it was nice to see that the OS leaks were not gonna stop based on device. Best part about this leak--their is a full change log included for you all to have a peek at, enjoy folks!

    *OS Disclaimer - This is an unofficial release. If you choose to install, do so at your own risk and only if you're comfortable in the process of upgrading and downgrading your device software. It is quite normal during operating system development for certain features to be crippled or disabled while others are tested, and these beta builds often reflect that. They are not always better. Depending on your BlackBerry comfort level, it may be best for you to wait for community feedback on a build before deciding to download and install for yourself or simply wait for the next official release. If you require support, you will find it in our CrackBerry forums via our extremely knowledgeable community base - do not contact your carrier or RIM for Beta OS technical support (their first course of action will be to advise you to downgrade to a supported OS). Follow the links below for more information and instructions. *

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