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The BlackBerry solution launches in Saudi Arabia

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RIM, in partnership with Zain Saudi Arabia and Alcatel-Lucent, have launched the BlackBerry solution in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Alcatel-Lucent is leveraging its strong local presence in the region to provide Zain Saudi Arabia with the project management, end-to-end implementation, installation, commissioning and on-going support for delivering the BlackBerry solution to the Saudi market. With Alcatel-Lucent managing integration and deployment, Zain Saudi Arabia can focus on managing subscribers and providing adequate customer care.

When the program launches, Zain will be offering its customers the BlackBerry Curve 8900, BlackBerry Bold 9000, BlackBerry Pearl 8120 and BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220. Customers will also have access to BES and BIS.

Hopefully Saudi Arabia will also be able to get their hands on some of the latest devices that will be launching this fall in North America.

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The BlackBerry solution arrives in Ghana - implications for poverty?

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The above is a Zain network coverage map of Ghana. As you can see, major roads are the focus of coverage and BlackBerry devices will be a welcomed addition to the country’s infrastructure.

In a partnership with Zain and EMS, RIM have announced the availability of BlackBerry in Ghana, one of the most stable countries on the African continent.

The carrier Zain has a 3G network, which means that customers and government clients will be able to have access to enterprise-grade smartphones. The first devices to hit the market include the BlackBerry Storm, the Curve 8900, Bold 9000 and the Pearl Flip 8220.

The partnership brings together three crucial companies for helping to further expand the country’s infrastructure and better channel resources to the eradication of extreme poverty. Increasing productivity and transparency are two key elements of improving governmental and corporate affairs, and it’s the hope of BlackBerry Cool that RIM will be a significant player in this regard.

Imagine the following scenarios:

  • BES infrastructure is implemented in all major organizations to ensure communication is instant and efficient.
  • Government workers are able to send communications from the field directly to the departments responsible.
  • Small businesses are able to better serve their clients and be constantly available, regardless of whether or not they are in office.
  • Logistics for delivering food, materials and aid are all greatly improved by the BlackBerry solution.

This is surely going to have a positive impact on the economy.

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Astraware Board Games for BlackBerry has all your favorites

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Astraware have launched a collection of classic board games called Astraware Board Games. The board games pack is available for the Storm, Curve 8900, Tour and all trackball/touchscreen BlackBerry devices. It features chess, checkers, reversi, backgammon, Nine Men’s Morris, Snakes and Ladders, Tic Tac Toe and more.

Each board game has user-customizable rules and a range of difficulty levels. Some of the features you’ll find in this board game pack include:

  • 8 classic boardgames in one easy-to-use pack.
  • User customizable rules so you can play it your way.
  • 3 levels of difficulty, designed for casual players and non-experts.
  • Evokes the feel of classic boardgames played on wooden boards.

The Astraware Board Games collection is currently on sale for $7.99 until September 7th.

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Threaded SMS with BlackBerry Bold and Curve 8900 OS leaks

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Native threaded SMS is just around the corner for BlackBerry users and now you can get an advanced preview if you’re using a BlackBerry Curve 8900 or Bold 9000.

The latest OS leak, OS 5.0.0.190, delivers native threaded SMS for BlackBerry. While you won’t get the tabbed browsing as seen in previous OS 5 leaks, the native SMS client is reason enough to download. But remember, as with all OS leaks, proceed with caution! Always back up your device first because you may lose data.

Download OS 5.0.0.190 for your BlackBerry Bold 9000.

Download OS 5.0.0.190 for your BlackBerry Curve 8900.

[Via]

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Free LBS app Aloqa now available for the Bold and Curve 8900

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Aloqa, is a location based service that integrates content from 15 publishers including Yelp, Eventful and Craigslist. The beta, originally available for Android, is now available for for the BlackBerry Curve 8900 and the Bold 9000.

The app helps BlackBerry users in that it takes away the need to find information via the browser and it proactively pushes out recommendations about social network friends nearby and interesting local opportunities to users on the go. These are all qualities of a good LBS app.

Their are also some bright minds behind this app. The company is headed by CEO Sanjeev Agrawal, former Global Head of Google Product Marketing and subsequently VP Products at TellMe Networks (acquired by Microsoft).

Download Aloqa for free by visiting their site and filling out the form.

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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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Free BlackBerry music manager Unsynced updates beta

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Unsynced is a BlackBerry music manager that is currently in a free beta. It’s a slick looking app that is available for the BlackBerry Bold and the BlackBerry Curve 8900.

Do download, go to http://m.unsynced.com/beta from your device.

The latest beta updates include the addition of album art, as well as more efficient scanning and playlist creation.

Unsynced features include:

  • Painstaking care has been taken to ensure Unsynced Music is efficient and predictable.
  • The Unsync button will capture song information. Unsynced does a search on their end and e-mail you the most relevant results so that you won’t forget to “purchase” it when you get home.
  • Use any PC to drag and drop music into folders on your BlackBerry using Mass Storage Mode. Listen to your newly added songs through Browse Files, or quickly create new playlists through Create/Modify Playlists, giving you the freedom to add to your music experience not just at home, but wherever you go.
  • Progress indicators for those long podcasts.
  • Customizable color themes to match your style.
  • Send song info to friends to share your tastes.

Get it now because the beta may not be free forever!

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Wal-Mart selling 21 free BlackBerry devices but beware of the conditions

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Wal-Mart has a large list of BlackBerry devices that they’re offering for free with service plan conditions. While the retail giant doesn’t supply some of the high end devices such as the Bold and Storm, it does supply every device that would be in the lower to mid range of BlackBerry devices. These devices include the Pearl, Pearl Flip, Curve 83xx, Curve 8900 and the latest Curve 8520.

A big caveat with these deals is that they almost all involve signing up for 2 years worth of services that will cost you at least $125 per month. With some smart BlackBerry usage, you can generally bring your data and voice costs down to under $100 per month. This figure is easily attainable by watching over your voice minutes carefully, and leveraging SMS and email services for communication.

That means that you are committing to a $25 premium on your contract that will need to be paid over the course of 2 years (or 24 months). By those numbers, you are getting your free device at $600, when you could have it for around $200 with a contract. Like a credit card, you are paying an incredible premium for short term benefits.

Here is a list of 21 free BlackBerry devices you can get at Wal-Mart:
Click through for a roundup of the cheapest BlackBerry devices sold at Wal-Mart

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BlackBerry OS leaks: Storm OS 4.7.0.164, Bold and 8900 OS 5.0.0.130

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This week is off to a great start with some OS leaks for your BlackBerry. The move coveted of the 2 leaks is for Bold and Curve 8900 users: OS 5.0.0.13. Don’t get too excited though, like all the OS 5.0 leaks we’ve seen, the build does not come with the latest BlackBerry Messenger, and it will make App World buggy.

BlackBerry Storm 9500 users will appreciate the OS 4.7.0.164 update as it helps make the Storm experience a little smoother. While the Storm started off on a bad foot, RIM has done a great job of releasing OS updates to improve the experience. So if you’re frustrated with your device, at the very least you should be getting official updates the moment they’re available.

Personally, I don’t recommend downloading these OS leaks, but I’m posting for the die-hards who absolutely must try them out. Make sure to back everything up!

Download OS 4.7.0.164 for the BlackBerry Storm 9500.
Download OS 5.0.0.130 for the BlackBerry Bold
Download OS 5.0.0.130 for the BlackBerry Curve 8900

[Via and Via]

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Dear BlackBerry Cool: My thoughts on the BlackBerry Onyx

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[ED NOTE: The following was submitted to tips [at] blackberrycool [dot] com. Send us info any time.]

First of all, I just wanted to say sorry for the bad picture. I was allowed to play around with the device as much as I wanted but my “friend” wouldn’t let me take any pictures. Eventually he turned his back and this is the best I could do with my 8900’s camera.

This is the BlackBerry Onyx but it doesn’t have the trackpad. This is a prerelease device and I’ve heard that the Onyx will ship with a trackpad, as per RIM’s latest initiative on nixing the trackball entirely. There are also rumors that the trackpad may just be carrier specific.

I have to say, I LOVE this device. To put it simply, it’s the BlackBerry Curve 8900 (Javelin) with 3G and a Bold keyboard.

This is the next device I’m going to buy. The Bold is, IMHO, the best BlackBerry that RIM has ever made. It is the flagship device and this model packs everything that the Bold has, but in a smaller form factor that fits nicely into your pocket.

The battery is the same as the Bold, again this seems to be the Bold with a Curve 8900 form factor. The display is really nice and I believe it’s 480×360.

Overall, this is going to be an amazing device for RIM. The hardware combines the best of both the Bold and 8900 worlds. There isn’t much else to say about the device, except that the battery cover has changed AGAIN! It seems RIM keeps changing the cover each time they launch a device. While I’m not sure if the battery cover I was looking at will ship with the device, it’s not nearly as good as the Bold. I’m begging you RIM, bring back my Bold cover! The custom jobs you can do with it are simply the best.

-RogersDude69

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