Tag: australia

The cheapest BlackBerry Pearl 8110 to date available in Australia

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Crazy John’s in Australia is offering the BlackBerry Pearl 8110 for free, with a $39 BlackBerry Service Cap. As with most plans, the headlines don’t tell the whole story.

The plan requires that you sign up for 2 years at a $40 per month, and with that you get unlimited email and internet. Be warned though, that calls are charged at 47 cents per 30 seconds, with a 35 cent initial charge.

While the calls are expensive, this truly is the best BlackBerry bundle deal we have seen to date. To get a BlackBerry Pearl 81XX from Wal-Mart, you need to sign on to a service plan of $99.99 per month or higher and in conjunction with any feature or bundle or any other plan option at least $24.99 per month or greater.

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Australia gets EDGE and Telstra Blue Tick for the BlackBerry Bold

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Vodafone EDGE

There’s some good news for the folks in Australia. Firstly, it seems that Vodafone Australia have finally upgraded their GPRS network to EDGE. Although EDGE isn’t necessarily blazing fast, it’s a huge improvement and Vodafone customers.

Another piece of good news for Australian BlackBerry users is that Telstra have announced that the BlackBerry Bold has been accredited with Telstra’s Blue Tick, which recommends devices for handheld use in metro, rural and regional areas. Users can upgrade their existing Bold devices, while new users will get Tick-ready devices out of the box.

[Special thanks goes to Brendan for the tip]

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RIM listens to employee’s private calls UPDATED

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ZDNet Australia is reporting about RIM listening to employee’s phone calls. The news comes from an interview with RIM chief information officer Robin Bienfait, where she said that

BlackBerry maker Research in Motion admitted yesterday that it recorded all employee conversations in the interest of maintaining control over intellectual property.

RIM chief information officer Robin Bienfait, during an interview with ZDNet.com.au in Sydney, said that all actions carried out on RIM’s internal network were logged, which meant that people who wanted to carry out private conversations might want to bring in personal devices.

“Everything I have that’s on RIM is recorded and retained as RIM. So if they want to have a chat with somebody and it’s not a chat that’s within RIM’s domain, then they may want their own personal device,” she said.

When asked exactly whether it was conversations, rather than just written information she kept tabs on, Bienfait answered: “Everything. I record everything.”

This is obvious to anyone who follows the BlackBerry space because you need to keep leaks and security information under control. RIM goes to great lengths to make sure that it can offer a secure smartphone to its customers and it can’t have people giving out private info.

So although you may think RIM is being Big Brother, it’s an important element in keeping our devices so pro.

Here is a little side rumor - I heard that RIM once tracked down a device leak based on the grain of the desk in the photo that was published on the forums.

[Via]

[UPDATE: This story is inaccurate in that RIM does not record employee phone calls. Robin Bienfait's comments, which originally appeared in ZDNet Australia, were intended to describe a capability that exists with RIM's BlackBerry MVS technology. This technology allows companies to record both voice and data based conversations, which is particularly useful for RIM's customers in regulated industries that require such ability, but Ms. Bienfait did not intend to suggest that RIM itself records employee phone calls.

RIM has deployed an internal beta test of its latest MVS technology to a subset of employees and Ms. Bienfait intended to convey that RIM was recording data that is transmitted over voice channels (ie. SMS messages) as well as data channels (ie. email messages and IM chat sessions), but RIM is not recording the phone calls of the employees involved in the beta test or any other employees.]

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Vodafone Australia Announces BlackBerry Storm Pricing

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In an attempt to get their subscribers excited prior to the BlackBerry Storm release, Vodafone Australia has released pricing information for the device. Voda Australia will sell the Storm for free on a two year contract, with Internet Caps ranging from $70 to $150. Customers will be able to purchase the Storm starting December 1st. For more information, visit the website below:

www.vodafone.com.au/blackberrystorm

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Vodafone Australia takes BlackBerry Storm pre-orders

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It’s a pretty slow news day today, which allows us with another opportunity for some BlackBerry news catchup. Earlier this week, Vodafone Australia posted a pre-order page for the BlackBerry Storm. Although there is no release date or pricing information, registering will place you in Vodafone’s priority queuing (a credit check is required). Click the link below to register!

Vodafone Australia BlackBerry Storm Pre-Order

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Bold Delays and JavaScript Dismays (BlackBerry Cool Podcast: Episode 39)

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The BlackBerry Cool Podcast: Episode 39

A bit of a slower week newswise, though still plenty of interesting Bold-related stuff, including upcoming AT&T availability, OS 4.6 browser speeds, as well as some fresh pricing info on the BlackBerry 8220 and some more confusion on the BlackBerry 9500’s naming scheme. This is Simon’s last podcast on BBCool, so you better soak it all in.

Click here to listen to the BlackBerry Cool Podcast: Episode 39

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Australian BlackBerry Bold enterprise rollout delayed by software issues

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Telstra’s been trickling out their BlackBerry Bold to enterprise customers for a few weeks now, but it looks like they’re holding off on giving out any more until the next software upgrade which should fix some streaming video issues.

“RIM is developing a software upgrade to optimize media streaming on the device,” Telstra spokesman Peter Taylor said. “This free firmware upgrade is around the corner and a handful of customers have chosen to wait for this before rolling out the new BlackBerry Bold to their teams. … “The BlackBerry Bold has not experienced any issues with bugs at all. All four local carriers will be launching the product, Telstra and Optus both currently have the product available in the marketplace,” a RIM Australia spokesperson said. “It’s very common for different carriers and networks to have specific requirements for software. Handset manufacturers then tailor software specifically for a network or a carrier.”

AT&T customers are still glaring at us Canadians and our shiny new toys, as they’re dealing with the exact same kind of of software delays. Optus has had the Bold publicly available for some time now, without any issues to report whatsoever. Obviously different carriers will have different requirements, which accounts for the different launch dates internationally. We can only hope that American customers won’t also have to wait until September for the first big patch before the Bold is released.

(via Australian IT)

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HSBC sticking to BlackBerry

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Word has it that HSBC won’t be making that jump to iPhone reported last week. Australian CIO Brenton Hush had made some commentary regarding the possibility of an iPhone rollout, which didn’t really say “no”, but a lot of people took as “maybe”. A few calls to HSBC revealed that “there’s not a snowball’s chance in hell” that the some 200,000-odd BlackBerrys currently deployed internationally would be ousted in favour of the iPhone 3G. Good thing for RIM, because that’s a pretty big contract to lose to the competition.

(Internetnews via Pinstack)

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Telstra BlackBerry Bold launches for business customers

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The previously-mentioned $0-down BlackBerry Bold for Australian business customers has now gone live, along with word of a $999 suggested retail price for customers once it goes public. Two-year plans will be in the neighbourhood of $89.95 monthly for e-mail, plus the standard $80 for voice and data. To sweeten the deal, Telstra’s throwing in 200MB free for the first two months. Not too shabby, eh? Vodafone, Optus and 3 Mobile were also slated to be offering the BlackBerry 9000, so keep your eyes open for more info on their offerings.

(via iTWire)

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HSBC trading in 200,000 BlackBerrys for iPhone 3Gs?

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HSBC, the gigantor multinational banking firm, is considering making the jump from BlackBerry to iPhone for upwards of 200,000 of their employees.

“We are actually reviewing iPhones from a HSBC Group perspective … and when I say that, I mean globally… You know, it’s a big decision, especially when you have an existing fleet out there,” [HSBC's Australia and New Zealand chief information officer Brenton Hush] said. “We always explore the potential application of new technologies and this is no different.”

This is not only a big deal for RIM who could be losing a major customer, but could easily set precedent for other major companies who would see that the iPhone works for serious business. Many enterprises are not willing to give up BlackBerry’s rock-solid security, but it’s interesting to see that a financial firm that’s dealing with sensitive numbers all the time are confident enough to consider the iPhone a solution. Of course, no decision has been made yet, and the it’s still a pretty low priority for the HSBC CIO, but we’ll all be watching to see if the change is made. Some remain optimistic that RIM’s push into consumer territory will be more successful than Apple’s move into enterprise, and how this HSBC deal ends up will decide if that’s true.

(via ZDNet)

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