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BlackBerry Master Control Program Version 0.9.3.0 Beta 6 Review

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BlackBerry Master Control Program (MCP) is a power tool that allows you to easily load/save/erase any module you want, take screenshots of your device, turn the radio on or off, synchronize the time on your device to your PC, reset to factory settings (remove IT policies), perform a handheld wipe, optimize (in real time) or install any BlackBerry OS. The latest version is 0.9.3.0 Beta 6 and it’s truly a handy piece of software. The software bills itself as being made for “moderate to advanced” users and I would put myself closer to the moderate end of the scale. Bear this in mind when reading the review.

User Interface

When you boot up MCP, it’s a little overwhelming. The menu structure of MCP is quite unique, with 15 icons that can be toggled with either a left, right or middle click. It’s an interesting approach but I find it’s not the most efficient. It’s not easy to remember what each icon represents, let alone the corresponding mouse action. In general, the menu structure and navigation is really text-based, and that slows down the software. To address this issue, MCP has included shortcut keys. If you right click the MCP tray icon you will see a menu that shows all of the hotkeys for navigation. Personally, I still find these hotkeys difficult to remember, but they definitely help. With a more visual UI and navigation system, everything could be done a lot faster.

To view the list of hotkeys, see the MCP site.
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BlackBerry Desktop Manager 6.0 Screenshot Leaked

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A screenshot of BlackBerry Desktop Manager 6.0 has been leaked and the UI looks great. It reminds me of the BlackBerry Desktop Manager for Mac, with a simple menu structure and device information readily available. There is a podcast feature available on the left column, which will hopefully be useful for managing podcasts. Version 6.0 of Desktop Manager is rumored to launch with OS 6.0.

Speaking of BlackBerry Desktop Manager, version 5.0.1.37 is now available for download.

Editorial: Creating a Better BlackBerry Experience

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mobile-value-chain

I just finished reading Josh Sookman of RBC Venture Partners and the BlackBerry Partners Fund’s article about “Creating a Better BlackBerry Experience.” He touches on some good points and the article is definitely worth a read.

The article is based on the above diagram, which addresses the various levels from developer to end user in the BlackBerry Experience. The first part of the diagram involves addressing fragmentation in the platform. Developers don’t want to waste time and money porting their app to the various screen sizes, and RIM needs to do a better job of offloading this frustration. Acquiring a company or technology that can alleviate porting costs would go a long way for developers.
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RIM Launches BlackBerry Desktop Software for Mac

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RIM has released a version of it’s BlackBerry Desktop Software for Mac. RIM has relied on acquired third party syncing software for a few years now, with some features simply not present and others obviously not as well-crafted as the native PC BlackBerry Desktop Software. I had been running XP (albeit very slowly) through emulation on the Mac OS just to deliver all the features of the PC utility so this comes as very welcome news.
Here are some of the features:

  • Sync iTunesĀ® playlists
  • Sync personal info like contacts
  • Sync tasks and appointments
  • Install new software, games, and more
  • Keep your BlackBerry software up to date
  • Create partial or full system backups

Download BlackBerry Desktop Software for mac