Nextel Communications Inc. named Zagat for BlackBerry(R) from Greystripe Inc. the winner of the 2004/2005 BlackBerry 7520(TM) Location Challenge, the fourth annual enterprise Java(TM) 2 Platform, Micro Edition (J2ME(TM) Platform) Developer Contest. Sponsored in conjunction with Research In Motion (RIM) (Nasdaq:RIMM), the Java Developer Contest was open to independent software vendors and developers who design location-based applications for the BlackBerry 7520.
“Wireless technologies are becoming more integrated into our business and personal lives thanks to BlackBerry applications like the ones designed by the winners of this year’s Java Developer Contest and the more than 40,000 registered developers that participate in the Nextel Developer Program,” Ernie Cormier, vice president, product management, Nextel. “The creativity that contestants exhibited in developing location-based services is an important step in making GPS an essential tool for our customers, whether they are interested in improving their companies’ operations, increasing profitability or enriching their lives outside of work.”
Greystripe won the $25,000 first place prize with Zagat Survey content for BlackBerry. The application combines the expansive content of the Zagat Survey with a rich, intuitive interface that relies on the user’s location as determined by GPS coordinates from the BlackBerry 7520 to intelligently search, cache and present Zagat Survey content. Zagat Survey is the leading producer of consumer survey-based leisure and lifestyle content, including information about restaurants, nightlife, shopping, hotels and golf courses.
“Nextel and Research In Motion are leaders in mobile communications and the BlackBerry 7520 is ushering in a new generation of rich LBS applications,” said Michael Chang, vice president, marketing at Greystripe. “Greystripe specializes in location-aware applications, and this award validates the strength of our LocationX technology platform in delivering premium content to the consumer.”
The $15,000 second-place winner was uLocate Communications Inc., which developed MapQuest(R) FindMe. MapQuest FindMe provides the familiar MapQuest interface on the BlackBerry 7520, allowing users to zoom in and out of maps and pan to access millions of points of interest. Moreover, a password-protected Web site allows users to manage address books and contact lists; view stop reports, message logs, position logs, routes, mileage and speed metrics for all phones in an account; and set up geofences around user-defined locations and be alerted when a phone enters or exits a location.
Digital Cyclone won the $10,000 third-place prize with its application My-Cast Pro, which allows subscribers to receive weather information for their specific location using the GPS capabilities of the BlackBerry 7520. My-Cast Pro offers real-time, animated Doppler(R) radar and satellite imagery centered over a local, regional or national weather map. Additionally, with the My-Cast Pro Weather Map feature, users can pan around a map and overlay current weather conditions, temperatures and wind information or view hourly, seven-day forecasts.
The BlackBerry 7520 incorporates GPS technology with E911 support and provides a true mobile office experience, enabling phone, Direct Connect(R), e-mail, browser, organizer, Bluetooth(R) support for hands-free use with headsets and car kits, and data applications in a single integrated device. It operates on Nextel’s guaranteed all-digital network to provide mobile professionals the freedom to access information and communicate while away from the office.
The winners of the BlackBerry 7250 Location Challenge – Java Developers Contest were presented their awards at a June 27 reception hosted by Nextel and RIM at the W Hotel during the JavaOne conference in San Francisco.
For more information on the BlackBerry Developers Program please visit http://www.blackberry.com/developers/index.shtml.