Monday, October 31, 2011

Editorial: Why My Next Smartphone Will Be The Galaxy Nexus

Posted By Ray Nicolini
Why My Next Smartphone Will Be The Galaxy Nexus
Some readers have called me an Android "fanboy". I can't entirely disagree. I'm passionate about the things I'm interested in, but try to keep an open mind, and be objective in my reviews and articles. 

In addition to Android, I could also be called an "HTC fanboy". Even back in my Windows Mobile and Pocket PC days I gravitated to devices made by HTC. My personal Android smartphones have included the HTC Magic and Google Nexus One; all built by HTC. 

When Google and Samsung announced the Nexus S I was torn. I'd had the chance to play with the Samsung Galaxy S phones from various carriers, and although I liked their speed, I didn't like their plastic shell and how light they felt compared to HTC and Motorola devices. I wasn't terribly impressed with Samsung phones. Sure, their specs have been great and their benchmarks impressive, but those weren't enough to sway my opinion (whether legitimate, or not). 

On the other hand, the G1 and Nexus One were Google partner "launch devices" -- smartphones that were made primarily to show off "stock" Android, and push the platform forward. The Nexus S was the latest in the series of launch devices, and I liked what I saw -- but it was made by Samsung. 

I decided to pass. 

Now that the Galaxy Nexus has been announced, I have the same decision put in front of me: Do I get the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, or do I wait for an equivalent made by HTC? 

My friends that had purchased Galaxy S phones (the Vibrant, Captivate, Epic, etc.) had all been really happy with their phones. Everyone I had talked to with a Nexus S liked it. I had to assume that my concerns about quality were unfounded. 

Fast forward to today. 

The Galaxy Nexus is the latest "launch device" from Google. It has a very sleek design with its curved back and curved front. It's thin. It has cool new gadgets that I haven't had in any of my previous phones (NFC, a front-facing camera, and barometer). It also has Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. It's the latest launch device from Google, so it has the pure Android experience. Since it's a "Google phone" it doesn't come loaded with a proprietary launcher or bloatware. 

Do I want this phone because it's an Android device? Sure, but not because I'm a fan boy. 

I want to buy a Galaxy Nexus because it represents the latest and greatest in the Android operating system. 

I want to buy a Galaxy Nexus because it represents a paradigm shift in smartphone design. 

I want to buy a Galaxy Nexus because I trust my friends' testimonial of Samsung's quality. 

But enough about me. Why do you want to buy a Galaxy Nexus?

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Motorola Pro+ 4G Announced for Nov. 7 Release on Bell Canada

Posted By Ray Nicolini

It’s business time. Not because I am wearing my business socks but rather Motorola has announced their Pro+ 4G for Bell Canada. The enterprise-ready smartphone will make its North American debut on November 7th, bringing the power of a 1GHz processor, 512MB of RAM, and a 3.1-inch 640×480 display. OK, so it isn’t that powerful, but Motorola Pro+ 4G offers much more through its built-in security and productivity tools. The 4G of its name refers to HSPA+ connectivity with a theoretical limit of 14.4 Mbps. Pricing was not announced. Check out more details in the below press release.
Motorola Mobility Canada Delivers the Smartphone that Works and Plays as Hard as You Do: Motorola PRO+ 4G
Launching Nov. 7 exclusively at Bell, Motorola PRO+ 4G is a powerful smartphone optimized for business with all the fun, applications and web browsing power of Android – a work phone worth taking home
Oct. 25, 2011
TORONTO - Oct. 25, 2011 - Life is full of demands, and we all could use a little extra help. With the sleek and sophisticated Motorola PRO+ 4G, brought to you by Motorola Mobility Canada Ltd. and available soon with Bell on the best network across Canada, you can have your own personal assistant that fits right in your pocket. Motorola PRO+ 4G gives you the power to edit important documents on the go, multitask when every second counts and encrypt sensitive work information with enterprise-level security so your IT manager can sleep at night. This supreme blend of touch screen, full QWERTY keyboard and Android™ 2.3 (Gingerbread) makes this smartphone ready for anything.
“The Motorola PRO+ 4G delivers the security and productivity tools that businesses require, but all the fun things consumers want,” says David Petrou, director of sales, Motorola Mobility Canada. “For professionals looking for a smarter smartphone, the Motorola PRO+ 4G offers robust features that work hard and play hard.”
Motorola PRO+ 4G has a super quick 1GHz processor and physical QWERTY keyboard for more efficient typing and texting when you need to update a client on the fly, browse for news and really important information, or multitask as necessity demands. And, with quick group messaging, it’s easy to reach an entire list of people in no time at all. The device is also packed with productivity features to make your life easier and to help you impress your boss including the pre-loaded QuickOffice® Connect for accessing, creating and editing documents on-the-go. We know that in a fast paced world, going in and out of apps wastes precious time, so now key apps such as your calendar and email are scrollable direct from your home screen.
Motorola PRO+ 4G is a smartphone that you and your IT department can agree upon. Nothing says business ready better than the leading security features; whether it’s remote wipe of your device and SD card, password expiration and history, or full encryption, your IT manager will breathe a sigh of relief. Motorola PRO+ 4G comes loaded with 25 Exchange ActiveSync security policies - including PIN lock, auto-discovery of Exchange Servers, Extended Device Management API’s and 3LM integration. Your sensitive information - your career - is guarded in this virtual vault with Motorola PRO+ 4G. It’s fully loaded with support for Exchange and GmailTM for business, including corporate directory options. With these leading features your IT manager just might give you a smile.
Motorola PRO+ 4G merges all of your personal and business information for you in a convenient system designed to make your life easier. Take the pressure off knowing Motorola PRO+4G syncs services from multiple sources, so all your contacts are viewable the way you want them, calendar options are available to arrange, edit, and respond to meeting invites, there are direct dial conference options, and intuitive email solutions that can anticipate who you may be sending an email to before you do. Its 4G Mobile HotSpot capabilities enable you to connect multiple devices, such as a laptop or tablet, for quick access to the Web, corporate email and calendar syncing. Plus, it features scratch resistant Corning® Gorilla® Glass so tossing your phone in your bag or pocket doesn’t have to be a disaster.
Motorola PRO+4G is ready for full customization to bring you the games and applications most important to you. With Music, Motorola’s unique music player you have a dashboard for music discovery. You have easy access to all your favourite artists and song lyrics. Plus, you receive live, personalized recommendations for songs and videos as well as news and event updates from the world of music. With Gallery, you can aggregate all your photos from social networking and photo sharing sites like Facebook and PicasaTM for easy viewing. Plus, with Adobe® Flash® Player 10.3, you’ll be able to access the online content you love. Motorola PRO+4G is also preloaded with the latest Google MobileTM Services including Google Maps™ 5.0 with Navigation, Google Talk™ and more than 250,000 apps from Android Market™.
Smart Accessories
A suite of smart accessories ensures users get the most from the Motorola Pro+4G. Available accessories include a Bluetooth® enabled headset, Bluetooth enabled car kit, portable power, and car charger.
The Motorola Pro+ 4G will be available November 7 exclusively from Bell. For more information visit

Thursday, October 27, 2011

RIM officially announces the BlackBerry Porsche P’9981, a “luxurious modern Smartphone” that costs $2,000 (Video)

Posted By Ray Nicolini

Not to fond of the Bold 9900 and really want to stand out? You can easily jump on plane and take a flight to Dubai and pick up the newly announced BlackBerry Porsche P’9981. This will probably never be sold by a carrier in Canada, looks like an exclusive for Porche Design Stores and will be available later this year. Specs have this running BlackBerry 7 OS comes with custom Porsche fonts and redesigned icons, touchscreen display and a full QWERTY keyboard, brushed stainless steel case with a leather backing, 1GHz processor, 5megapixel camera with 720p HD video recording, NFC.
Todd Wood, SVP of Industrial Design at RIM, said that “Our partnership is built on the same understanding of the unity of form and content. Porsche Design P’9981 is a luxurious modern Smartphone, combining excellent Porsche Design work and outstanding BlackBerry technology”.
Update: Apparently the Porsche P’9981 will cost $2000 (USD) and there’s a limited “restricted” amount for sale. Here’s a video compared to the Bold 9900.
So there you have it, the BlackBerry Porsche P’9981 could be yours!
Here’s the link to Air Canada to check flights.
Source: BBIN & Tbreak
Via: BerryReview

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

RIM Announces BlackBerry Business Cloud Services for Microsoft Office 365

Posted By Ray Nicolini

Microsoft Office 365 Cloud
Press Release

Mobilizes Microsoft Office 365 Exchange Online via RIM-hosted BlackBerry Management Service; Features Advanced Web-based IT and Employee Self-Service Smartphone Management and Security Functions
WATERLOO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 25, 2011) - Research In Motion (RIM) (NASDAQ:RIMM)(TSX:RIM) today announced BlackBerry® Business Cloud Services for Microsoft Office 365 - a new RIM-hosted online service for midsized businesses and enterprises that extends Microsoft Exchange Online to BlackBerry® smartphones, and allows organizations to self-manage their BlackBerry deployments in the cloud. An open beta for the service is launching today in over 30 countries.
"BlackBerry Business Cloud Services is an easy and cost-effective way for businesses and government agencies to extend Microsoft Office 365 to BlackBerry smartphones and manage the deployment in the cloud," said Alan Panezic, Vice President at Research In Motion. "We have been working together with Microsoft and select customers through an early access program and we are pleased to now launch an open beta for the service."
"BlackBerry Business Cloud Services will help accelerate how BlackBerry customers can realize the full benefits of the best productivity experience across the PC, browser and phone with Microsoft Office 365," said Julia White, Senior Director of Microsoft's Exchange Product Management Group. "This new service delivers valuable enhancements to Office 365 while preserving the cost and business agility benefits the cloud offers to organizations of all sizes."
Key features include:
  • Access to Microsoft Exchange Online email, calendar and organizer data from a BlackBerry smartphone
  • BlackBerry® BalanceTM technology, which presents a unified view of work and personal content on a BlackBerry smartphone while keeping the content separate and secure
  • A web-based console for IT administrators to provision, manage and secure BlackBerry smartphones from anywhere
  • Online access to employee self-service smartphone security functions, allowing users to reset a device password or remotely lock or wipe a device in the event of loss or theft
Managed service providers, systems integrators, carriers, resellers and other partners can also use the cloud service to manage BlackBerry deployments on behalf of their customers.
A number of Fortune 500 customers and several government agencies in the US participated in an early access program and are among the many organizations that already plan to use the service.
Microsoft Office 365 customers can sign up for the BlackBerry Business Cloud Services beta at The cloud-based service is available for no additional charge to Microsoft Office 365 Midsized Businesses and Enterprises plan subscribers and works with BlackBerry smartphones on business or consumer data plans.
More information is available at

Thursday, October 20, 2011

PingMe for BlackBerry Released

Posted By Ray Nicolini

Cross-Platform messaging apps are starting to become a dime a dozen. However, PingMe looks to be the closest we’ve seen to a BBM clone. With the PingMe cross-platform messaging app for BlackBerry, you can:
  • Real Time Message Receipts - See typing indication, and Sent/Delivered/Read message notifications.
  • Group Chat - Create dynamic circles/groups as you go.
  • News Feed - Instantly turns your address book social with updates from your closest friends.
  • Geo-Location - Find friends nearby with geo-location enabled messages.
  • Push Notifications - Never miss a message. PingMe tells you when someone sends you a message, even when PingMe is closed.
  • Simple Friend Finder - PingMe makes it easy to connect with all your friends through your address book, Facebook, direct phone numbers, or the PingMe network.
PingMe looks like a good fit to add to the other cross-platform apps we took a look at. To go a head an download PingMe, use your BlackBerry and click here.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011 Pro is FREE – Compliments of BlackBerry

Posted By Ray Nicolini

Remember that massive BlackBerry outage? You know the one that left some users without BlackBerry services for three days. Oh, how could you forget! Well, one of the developers listed in the ‘make good package’ has started the offer. You can now pickup an absolutely free copy of Pro from iSpeech in BlackBerry App World.
Valued at $19.99, speaks txt (SMS) and email messages aloud so you can concentrate on the road. Eliminate temptation to drive distracted-let read txts (texts) and respond by voice with Pro.

Monday, October 17, 2011

BlackBerry's RIM co-CEO claims upcoming BBX OS platform will ‘leapfrog the competition'

Posted By Ray Nicolini

RIM is about to announce something huge, and it’s going to take the world by storm. At least that is according to co-CEO Jim Balsillie who, with the rest of his embattled BlackBerry team is going to announce the BBX Platform tomorrow at the keynote address at the BlackBerry DevCon Conference.
“We’ve leapfrogged everyone with what we’re announcing [on Tuesday] and you’re going to see it on display. We built an engine back in the mid-90s that served us incredibly well for 15 years, and in the past couple of years, we’ve had to build the engine of the future while still driving the engine we’ve got.”
The anticipation is high not only because of RIM’s fall from grace in recent months, but because just last week the company was dealt its biggest PR blow in nearly three years: for three days, service was interrupted in Africa, the Middle East, Europe and most of North and South America. What started out as a switching problem turned into a full-blown outage. Today, the company announced plans for restitution, a $100 app pack free to all BlackBerry users, regardless of whether they were affected by the outage.
BBX, which is expected to be based on the QNX platform that is used on the BlackBerry Playbook, is an industrial-strength OS that, before it was bought by RIM, was used by nuclear power plants, manufacturing facilities and oil rigs. The news couldn’t come at a better time, too: RIM’s share price has more than halved in the past six months, down from its high of $144 in mid-2008 to just $22 today. After the mild success of the Playbook, which has only sold 700,000 units to date, and the grudging welcome of the latest crop of BlackBerry phones, BBX is the company’s chance for greatness.
“Nobody wants success for this company and return to the shareholders, and nobody in this world wants it more than Mike [Lazaridis] and I,” Mr. Balsillie said.
Here’s hoping.