In about a month from now, we’ll know whether beleaguered Canadian tech star RIM will survive or not.
That’s the dramatic word ahead of the company’s long-awaited, and previously delayed, official introduction of the new BlackBerry 10 platform. Facing a slipping market share and stock price, as well as increased competition among consumer and enterprise mobility rivals, RIM needs to make a big splash with its new BlackBerry Enterprise 10 operating system and BlackBerry 10 smartphones in as short a time as possible.
That may be the reason one known feature of the new platform, called Time Shift, lets users ‘roll back the clock’.
Time Shift mode captures a few extra frames over a several milliseconds before and after snapping a photo, so in a group shot of friends, you can ‘scroll back’ and find the perfect facial expression (like open eyes or smiling face) among each of your friends, and combine the best moments into one picture.
(Those are HD pictures with 1080P and 8 MP quality, by the way, with what I hope will be great new picture and video editing capabilities. Even RIM CEO and President Thorsten Heins is excited, having already teased us with the “cutting-edge multimedia capabilities” of the new platform.)
So, the new operating system and two new handsets will be introduced at launch events to be held January 30th, in locations around the world: Toronto, New York, London, Paris, Johannesburg and Dubai.
Certainly, new mobile computing functions for both consumer and enterprise users will be highlighted, as will new applications for lifestyle, business and enterprise use.
BlackBerry will show new navigation features, like Flow, offering easier ways to move through different applications open on the device.
A new communication Hub will be unveiled, where all messages, notifications, feeds and events (for both personal and professional use) can be quickly and easily reviewed with a simple finger gesture.
BlackBerry will introduce a Keyboard that can learn and adapt to an individual’s own typing and writing, whether that text entry is for fun or profit, or both.
In fact, BlackBerry wants its new devices to be more widely used in both domains. It will address the duality of work and play with the new Balance feature, which can keep separate the consumer and corporate data, apps and profiles that one device must simultaneously support these days.
But if consumers get a new mobile platform that’s really fun and creatively engaging, business users still want one that’s solidly safe and secure.
Enterprise and government customers have already been beta testing the new platform, and RIM will say at the launch event that it’s getting the thumbs up from public and private organizations around the world.
The U.K. National Technical Authority for Information Assurance has approved the new devices for government use already; they’ve been given the high-level ‘Restricted’ classification in approved configurations.
And the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has given BlackBerry 10 a top FIPS 140-2 security certification, so government agencies can deploy it from the day of launch – that’s the first time any BlackBerry product has been certified ahead of launch.
With BlackBerry 10 less than a month away, RIM’s been time-shifting a lot lately.
submitted by Lee Rickwood