Hands-on with the QuickPlayer at CTIA
Our trip to CTIA was fruitful, it seems. We’ve talked about the QuickPlayer for BlackBerry time and time again, but as the title reads, we got a little more intimate with this app from QuickPlay today, and let us tell you, we’re all smiles over here. With the news of exciting (and streaming) content like ABC News and the like being added to the QuickPlayer, the salivating started, and once we were able to sit down and explore, the auditory awesomeness was slightly overwhelming.
This is a gorgeous application, let’s get that out of the way. It doesn’t look like other BlackBerry applications with a confusing interface, horrid color scheme and font choices, among other issues. While getting hands-on with it using our 7130, even with a smaller screen than say that of the 8700, we could still read and navigate seamlessly. Simple green/black/navy colouring takes over the interface, making it look similar to the Pearl’s official site. Don’t worry, this isn’t a Pearl piece, we’ll stop now.
How good could audio be coming from the BlackBerry, though? We’re all aware that the devices lack a little on the phone audio quality, so there was some worry heading into the content. But even before we could get into it, we noticed a little word - “buffering”. Streaming audio? Thank you, QuickPlay. Even though the buffering lacks some speed (about 15 seconds to get to a 2-minute ABCNews clip), all is forgiven once the news, literally, gets out.
Yes, the sound (and content) quality from channel to channel will vary, but 95% of the content currently on the QuickPlayer sounds better than it does on any radio. Even after turning the volume up, which often distorts sound quality, ABC and MarketWatch were still keeping me in the loop with crystal-clear audio. Don’t be overly concerned about poor quality, though, with the names that have signed on to provide content, the reputable names should provide reputable quality.
Being able to be kept up-to-date while your PC boosts up in the morning, on the drive home from work stuck in rush-hour traffic, or even before bed, and doing so with streaming audio (there’s been talk of video) sounds like a great plan to us. Even with the currently limited content (22 channels, mostly containing news and weather for major US cities), lack of compatibility with a headset (solved with the Pearl and future devices) and slightly slow buffering times, we’re seeing the QuickPlayer as a pretty great addition to your BlackBerry.