BlackBerry gets bolder [New Straits Time (Malaysia)]
(New Straits Time (Malaysia) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) REDESIGNED: Research In Motion, or RIM, is no more. The company is now officially known as BlackBerry. This comes with the launch of its much awaited BlackBerry 10 (BB10) operating system and two new devices, all to be released with the fervent hope of capturing the hearts of millions of smartphone users. Will they appeal to consumers Let's take a quick look
BLACKBERRY 10 FEATURES
THE first devices to carry the BB10 platform are the Z10 and Q10 models. Both phones are expected to be available at the end of next month. The BlackBerry Z10 is a touch-based smartphone that features a 4.2-inch display and 8-megapixel camera, capable of taking HD video.
The BlackBerry Q10 is also a touch phone but with a physical QWERTY keyboard. The phone has a 3.1-inch display. Both smartphones will come in white and black.
With the latest OS, BlackBerry claims to have introduced a totally new way of using a smartphone with the aim of helping users finish their tasks faster and with ease. While staying focused on messaging and multitasking, there are several features that the company says will differentiate user experience from the many Android phones and Apple's iPhone.
* No home screen. To activate lock screen, just slide your finger up from the bottom screen to get to the main screen.
* BlackBerry Hub keeps all apps in one place. It can run up to eight apps (like Twitter, Facebook, messaging, notifications and email) in the background and you can take a quick look into the Hub from any app with just a swipe.
* The BlackBerry keyboard makes onscreen typing accurate and effortless. It learns your writing style and predicts and suggests the next word before you start typing. If you mistype, it will adjust and predict based on previous input.
* Sharing via video chat. Turn BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) chat into a video chat session with the option of sharing. The Screen Share feature allows you and your friends to share photos, websites and documents together while chatting.
* Photo capture and editing. The camera with the integrated Time Shift mode detects faces in the frame and shoots multiple frames in a burst. You can then playback and choose the best looking faces from the burst, edit and combine in a single shot.
* For enterprise users, the BlackBerry Balance technology separates and secures work applications and data from personal content.
Blackberry's web storefront is now called BlackBerry World (previously known as BlackBerryApp World). With the launch of BB10, the company has announced the availability of 70,000 apps in its marketplace. Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare and LinkedIn apps are preinstalled for BB10. Others, like Amazon Kindle, Angry Birds, Angry Birds Star Wars, DropBox, Skype, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and WhatsApp are supported.
New Inspiron laptops
THE big and bulky laptops are making way for smaller, lighter and full-featured models. This is to cater to professionals and students on the go who want thin, portable models with improved performance and, not forgetting, better battery life.
The latest comes from Dell, which has redesigned its Inspiron lineup with models which are now 15 per cent lighter, 17 per cent slimmer with 4-cell batteries and less than 1-inch in thickness.
The new Inspiron line-up, the 14, 15, and the mainstream14R and 15R systems, are available with Intel's Core i3, i5 and i7 processor options dual-band wireless support based on the latest Wi-Fi N standards. All four models also have touchpads that are optimised for the multi-touch gestures in Windows 8.
The price of Inspiron 14 starts at RM999, Inspiron 15 at RM1,049, Inspiron 14R at RM1,699 and Inspiron 15R at RM1,849.
Free calls and messages
Another free calls and messaging app that is making headway besides Viber, Whatsapp, WeChat, KakaoTalk is LINE. This smartphone/ PC/tablet app has crossed the 100 million users mark worldwide and is used across 230 countries, according to developers NHN Corp. Available for iOS, Android and BlackBerry devices, the app has colourful icons, emoji and stickers for users to express themselves.
While some stickers are free, users can also buy special ones to be used in chats. LINE also has 12 games integrated with the mobile messaging application and LINE Camera. The Camera app enables users to fine-tune photos, decorate them with frames and stamps and share them across different social networks.
With Chinese New Year around the corner, there are plenty of deals and discounts being offered. For those on the lookout for a good camera bargain, here's one from Canon Marketing (Malaysia) which allows you to trade-in of any used camera and enjoy instant cash rebates. With the trade-in, you get a cash rebate of RM500 for the purchase of a brand new EOS M or EOS 650D, and RM400 cash rebate for the PowerShot S110 models.
The EOS M, a small-sized camera with interchangeable lens system, is available in black, silver and white. As for the 18-megapixel EOS 650D model, it has a touchscreen interface and is recommended for those starting out on a DSLR camera. The 12.1 megapixel PowerShot S110 is a pocket-sized camera with 24mm Wide-Angle and f/2.0 lens with 5x optical zoom.
Canon's Red Hot promotion ends on Feb 24.
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