Friday Fun: Pass the Torch

I’m not passing a torch, but the headline this past week was the attempt by Blackberry to keep corporate users and attract consumers by launching a new platform with OS 6 and a new device called the Torch. Links to many reviews will give you an idea about what is good/bad about the device and platform. Personally, this feels like a band-aid on a cut that needs stitches. I don’t think consumers are going to get too excited with this device.

Blackberry to Guide Your Path With Torch
It may not come as a surprise that RIM has been against the ropes as more organizations adopt iPhones and now Android devices. Blackberry devices lack the style and sophistication of newer touch devices. There are plenty of people that swear by their BB and can crank out an email in a blink of an eye and the  Blackberry Torch aims to bridge the gap between the old school and the new school. There are some touch capabilities on the screen but not in the same sense you would find with on Apple or Android OS devices. There is a full keyboard which may provide some comfort to those not willing or ready to move to a full touch interface. 

Review Wrap-Up
I’m not on the guest list when it comes to these things so I have not hands on impressions. Not that it would matter anyway since I have no BB experience. Oh, wait I did have to look at an email on a BB a few years ago during a meeting. Suffice to say I have no context with which to judge the device. But these guys do so  give them a read if you are so inclined.

Carrying a Torch for RIM – the Gartenberg Take – Michael Gartenberg via Slashgear
Blackberry Torch Review – Matt Buchanan via Gizmodo
Blackberry Torch Review – Joshua Topolsky via Engadget
BlackBerry’s New Torch Makes a Leap From Drab – Walt Mossberg via All Things Digital (WSJ)

Uphill Climb for RIM

Before the Torch and the new OS 6 showed up this week Blackberry devices felt “old and busted” and the Android and iPhone devices were the “new hotness”. Turns out I wasn’t far off as Good Technology released a report that showed a huge increase in their support and implementation of devices to corporate users. Good is seeing a trend where 20% of their corporate customers support at least three platforms. /via ReadWriteWeb

Budapest in 70 Billion Pixels
You’ve no doubt played with a Google map where you pick some random spot on Earth and zoom in and keep going until you see some guy cutting the grass or people having a picnic in the park. That is a vertical zoom, but did you know you can do that same thing from a horizontal plane? There is a curious group of people that have quite a passion for this type of photography. Budapest is the largest one to date. You may also be interested in the Burj Dubai, Barak Obama’s Inauguration or perhaps Rio de Janeiro.

Apple and the Mysterious Patents
There are no shortage of opinions about the recent patent applications that were made public by Apple. TechCrunch found some oddly similar existing apps in the store that have been reflected in the patents designs. For what it’s worth Apple appears to be applying for the patent for the services that would make these applications work, not the interface design. Still unsettling in my opinion.

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