Custom BlackBerry Showcase: Black Denim and Turkish Snakeskin

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Snakeskin battery cover, yellow scroll ball, and Turkcell carrier bottom panel.

In the past couple of years we’ve seen BlackBerry go from a business-oriented uber pager, into the swiss-army knife of smartphone entertainment and productivity it is today. With so many high-end devices on the street, my Bold is no longer as special as it was when it first launched late last year. Time for a change that will elevate my device ten floors above the pedestrian and into the penthouse.

The Bold was the first BlackBerry that could be easily customized with interchangeable battery covers. On launch they had red and blue faux leather, now there are dozens of battery covers available from gold snakeskin to pink denim. We got our custom kits from Cellular Nationwide Network: an OEM parts distributor with a thorough selection of BlackBerry custom parts and quick shipping.

For these custom devices we wanted to switch the silver bezel and buttons out for a matte black set, I also wanted to switch carrier tags to add some international flavor. Ordering a battery back is simple enough but for these other modifications we’re going to have to so some disassembling and warranty voiding. Taking the device apart was simple enough, putting it back together is a little tough so here’s a disassembly guide just in case.

I would like to note how light the BlackBerry Bold’s guts are without the battery and external housing. To me the bold is a computer in every sense, but taken apart it weighs about as much as an Oreo.


Black denim battery cover, black scroll ball, matte black bezel with blank carrier bottom panel, and a set of black buttons.

If you’ve done any BlackBerry case modifications that you’d like to share please email us at tips(at)blackberrycool(dot)com.

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Flash for BlackBerry pretty much confirmed 6 months ago

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BGR is saying that it’s pretty much confirmed: Research In Motion is planning on integrating full Flash and Microsoft Silverlight support into their BlackBerry web browser.

Simon Sage was good enough to point out that around 6 months ago Mike Kirkup confirmed Flash would find its way to BlackBerry sooner or later and while it’s interesting that Silverlight will be part of the equation, the idea that Flash will come to BlackBerry in around a year can be easily deduced from simply keeping up with the industry.

The news is likely based on an inside tip relating to the known fact that RIM is planning on updating its BlackBerry Browser in order to be more competitive with the other smartphones in the market. This is common knowledge as anyone following the industry knows that BlackBerry gets a lot of criticism for not producing a browser experience on par with the likes of iPhone. If you hear the Internet complaining about a BlackBerry feature, rest assured the 10,000 employees at RIM have heard and are working on it.

While it’s nice to get affirmation that RIM is planning on updating its browser, the following could just as easily be deduced:

1. It’s pretty much confirmed that RIM will be launching a device with more than 1GB of on-board memory.
2. It’s pretty much confirmed that RIM is working on a new media player for future consumer devices.
3. It’s pretty much confirmed that the next generation BlackBerry processors will exceed 1GHz.

On a related note, Skyfire should be coming out with a beta before any of this can be confirmed. BlackBerry users should be able to enjoy Flash well before RIM updates the browser.

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Mobile gaming on the rise but where does BlackBerry falter?

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Regardless of how you may feel about the iPhone as a productivity or enterprise tool, it has done wonders for encouraging mobile software consumption and educating users about what is available to them.

Analysts are saying that the mobile games industry grew in North America by nearly 19 per cent in 2008, and PriceWaterhouseCoopers projects the market will grow from $858 million in 2008 to $1.3 billion in 2013.

Developers are having great success with mobile gaming in the App Store, but BlackBerry App World isn’t seeing the numbers just yet. Companies like Top Hat Monocle, are seeing excellent download rates in the App Store on their casual games such as Hopple, which has been downloaded more than 80,000 times.

So why doesn’t BlackBerry App World see similar success? Two factors stand out: hardware and marketing.
Continue reading about how RIM could help the BlackBerry gaming industry

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QuickCopy for BlackBerry makes copy and paste much easier

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QuickCopy is a relatively new application that fills in the gaps that the native copy/paste features lack on your BlackBerry.

The utility creates a shortcut menu in the top right of your screeen that gives you quick access to common PIM items such as Contacts, Tasks, Memos, Calendar & Email. Think of this application as being the QuickLaunch version of copy and paste.

QuickCopy will save you a ton of time if you’re logging in to sites from your browser, creating memo entries, viewing PIM information or inputting personal data into any third party apps.

Features:

  • Seamless integration with native Email & Calendar applications
  • Enhanced integration with Address Book (Contacts), Tasks & Memopad providing information as an organized list with the ability to quickly view or paste automatically
  • Simple & Easy to use User Interface with customizable Help Prompts to guide you through the process
  • Customizable Automatic Paste feature with the ability to turn it on/off based on your requirements
  • Customizable QuickCopy shortcut menu allowing you to choose the Menu Items for display
  • Ability to establish Default Contact, for even quicker access to your Contact information from anywhere on the device
  • Intuitive customizable options to control the behaviour of the application to meet your specific needs

Purchase QuickCopy for $4.99 and get ready to make the copy and paste experience much easier.

To activate and customize QuickCopy, go to Options > QuickCopy Options. The free trial is the full version so be sure to check it out if you aren’t sure about purchasing.

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Six Weeks of BlackBerry Essentials: win a BlackBerry Pearl case

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Time for the next entry in our 6 week series of contests by Griffin Technology. For 6 weeks, we’ll be giving away prize packages and all you have to do is comment. Each week’s prize package will be different and on the 6th week we’re giving away a grand prize.

The winners from last week are:

  • Jeremy
  • Diane
  • Allendf

This week, we’re giving away 3 FlexGrips for BlackBerry Pearl.

To win, comment what you like about your BlackBerry Pearl.

Feel free to participate on Twitter too. Just ReTweet this story.

Meet Griffin Technology on Twitter as well.

Next week, we’ll announce the winners and present that week’s prize package. Next week is for BlackBerry Curve users.

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Backup your personal BlackBerry data with DataBackup free beta

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S4BB have launched a free beta of their app DataBackup. The app lets you backup your personal data on your BlackBerry to the SD card. The app also lets you restore the data back to the device’s internal memory.

New features since version 0.0.1 (BETA 1):

  • Important Notice: This is a very early BETA version. Data integrity can NOT be guaranteed!
  • Backup contacts from Address Book to SD Card.
  • Restore contacts from SD Card to Address Book.

This app supports almost all BlackBerry devices, but make sure you’re running OS 4.1 or higher.

Register your name and email to be sent an OTA link for DataBackup for BlackBerry.

UPDATE: For those who are in need of a fully tested backup application, try PhoneBAKup. It costs $19.90 with no subscriptions or annual fees. There is also a free trial available.

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TwitVid launches Twitter video application in App World

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TwitVid have launched their application in App World today, giving users yet another means with which to send video to Twitter. Currently, the service is available in UberTwitter, a free Twitter client for BlackBerry.

UPDATE: Now, when you access a Twitvid link, you get sent to a mobile optimized site where you can view the Twitvid with several options. You can play or stream in “hi” or “reg” quality. There is also a preview function and an audio only option.

That being said, the concept of sending video through Twitter is great. It adds another level of interaction among the Twitter community and makes for some potentially hilarious tweets.

Check out TwitVid, the free video to Twitter client for BlackBerry.

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Deal of the Day: BerryBuzz on sale for half off

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BerryBuzz from Bellshare GmbH is on sale today for $2.98 (originally $5.95). BerryBuzz customizes the LED alerts well beyond the default alerts in a BlackBerry — letting you change the LED colors on Email, SMS, Calendard Alerts, missed calls, and incoming calls. This app is also compatible with the BlackBerry Tour so you can customize your new device.

Purchase BerryBuzz from Bellshare GmbH for $2.98 (originally $5.95).

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Interview with a first time BlackBerry user and 8520 owner

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Recently, we posted an article about the “The BlackBerry Curve 8520 setup guide and tips and tricks”. One user responded saying:

“I’m the target audience for this post, never having used a Blackberry or any sort of smartphone, so this has all been very helpful. I’ve been really impressed with the Curve so far; despite this being unfamiliar territory for me, everything has been intuitive and easy to use.” (Head over to the article to read the full comment.)

We decided to follow up with this user and interview them about their first BlackBerry.
Click through for the interview with a first time BlackBerry user who bought a Curve 8520

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Conquest theme for the BlackBerry Tour, Bold, Curve and more

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Conquest is a theme for the Tour, Bold, Curve, 8800 and 8700 model BlackBerry devices. It was originally designed for the Storm, and it has been ported over for trackball devices. Currently, the theme is on sale and will continue to be 50% off through Friday, August 21st.

The Conquest theme features:

  • An edgy, progressive design.
  • Original visuals, icons, and buttons.
  • Hidden homepage menu that fades in and out.
  • Vivid colors
  • Hotspots for Application Menu, Clock Profiles, and Messages (Storm only)

Purchase the Conquest theme on sale for $2.48 (regularly $4.95).
Click through for video of the theme in action

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