Monthly Archive for May, 2011Page 5 of 14

BlackBerry Theme Studio 6 Gold Release Now Available

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blackberry theme studio

RIM has made BlackBerry Theme Studio 6 Gold Release available for download. Theme Studio 6 comes with a cleaner and simpler user interface that lets you customize many different aspects of the device including backgrounds, sound effects and ringtones, icons and menus, and fonts. You can also add animations and screen transitions to the device with Theme Studio.

The question a lot of theme artists probably have on their mind is: what is the future of theme content? Will there be themes for the PlayBook and the future QNX devices? Considering how huge the theme market is in App World, it would probably be a bad move to axe them. Themes are also a competitive advantage for RIM as none of the other smartphones provide the same level of customization.

Hit the jump to read more about the Theme Studio 6 release. Another thing to note, and we’re not sure why, but RIM has 2 download links for Theme Studio. One for commercial and one for personal. It may just be a user agreement thing.
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The BlackBerry Partners Fund Leads $2M Seed Investment in Fuse Powered Inc.

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blackberry partners fund

The BlackBerry Partners Fund has been really active over the years creating funds for companies in fields related to the BlackBerry platform. Whether these companies are directly building products for BlackBerry or in markets that RIM could take advantage of, the Partners Fund has been there to seed companies through initial development. Recently, the Partners Fund lead a $2M seed investment in Fuse Powered Inc.. Fuse is an interesting company that publishes digital mobile games.

The mobile gaming space is growing rapidly but will it ever become like the console publishing business? The problem with mobile gaming is that you’re forever constrained by the fact that the price for a mobile game has been set at $2. Console games will run you $60 and therefore can do a lot more. The mobile space has the potential to be more powerful than console gaming, but it’s going to take a lot to get the market to shift to a price point that is conducive of a strong business.

More after the jump.
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Twitter 2.0 Launching Today on App World

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After being run through rigorous testing over at the Beta Zone earlier this month, RIM’s first-party twitter client has been updated to version 2.0 and is expected to be on App World today.

This update sports a number of user interface tweaks mostly having to do with easier navigation. BlackBerry 6 users also get the added benefit of Twitter being added to universal search.

RIM plans to roll out this update over the course of the day. I’ll be checking App World anxiously awaiting my update.

Reader Asks: How Do I Get My Stolen BlackBerry Back?

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Location of stolen BlackBerry
This is where Protect places my BlackBerry

Dear BlackBerryCool,

You guys write about apps like BlackBerry Protect and SmrtGuard all the time, and I thought I would give Protect a try. Just my luck, last week I had my BlackBerry stolen and I turned on Protect to see if I could find it. Protect gave me a map with a pin of where my device is, accurate to about 6 meters (ED NOTE: pictured above). So I decided to call the police and report it stolen because it’s technically theft over $500, making it worth police attention. In the report I said I have software installed to help find my BlackBerry and an investigator called me back a few days ago. I gave him the screenshot and he said he would get back to me. This is what he said:
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BBM With Augmented Reality is Going to Change How We Socialize

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The BBM and Wikitude integration begins at 1:51.

Back at BlackBerry World, we saw the beginnings of Wikitude with BlackBerry Messenger integration and while we didn’t say it at the time, this is going to be a huge shift in how BBM is used. For those who don’t know, Wikitude is a company that specializes in augmented reality apps and services, and at BBWC they announced they will be preloaded on upcoming BlackBerry devices. At the conference, we were given a first look at BBM in Augmented Reality on the Bold Touch 9900, and the implications are huge for BBM and how people socialize on their mobile.
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RBC Believes RIM Has Sold 250,000+ BlackBerry PlayBook Tablets to Date

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playbook stack

According to Mike Abramsky, General Manager at RBC Capital Markets, RIM has sold around 250,000 PlayBooks to date. The claim comes from a note to investors that uses channel checks and states that sales have been steady since launch. According to Abramsky, RIM could move 500,000 units during the first quarter and it’s possible that new models will increase these sales. Even with the increase due to new models, it’s not clear if RBC’s earlier projections of 4 million units in 2011 and 6 million units total in the PlayBook’s first 12 months of availability will end up accurate. Nonetheless, it looks like the PlayBook is off to a decent start. So if you’re a developer wondering whether it’s worth porting your app to the PlayBook, this should help in that decision making process. Also, keep in mind that PlayBook users are starving for apps and are probably more likely to download and pay for your product.