November 12, 2012
Research In Motion Will Debut Blackberry 10 In January 2013
Enid Burns for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online
Even with a dwindling user base, all eyes are on the upcoming release of BlackBerry 10 from Research In Motion (RIM). The company will mark the global launch of its anticipated BlackBerry 10 operating system with events in multiple countries on January 30 next year. RIM will also unveil the first two BlackBerry 10 smartphones at the launch events.RIM is making a large statement with its BlackBerry 10 release, and including a number of features to make up for the long-time coming operating system.
"In building BlackBerry 10, we set out to create a truly unique mobile computing experience that constantly adapts to your needs. Our team has been working tirelessly to bring our customers innovative features combined with a best in class browser, a rich application ecosystem, and cutting-edge multimedia capabilities. All of this will be integrated into a user experience - the BlackBerry Flow - that is unlike any smartphone on the market today," said Thorsten Heins, president and CEO of RIM, in a company statement. "Thanks to our strong partnerships with global carriers and a growing ecosystem of developers, we believe our customers will have the best experience around the world."
The question remains, how will BlackBerry 10 be received?
"I think the marketplace would like RIM to succeed. We have two heavy hitters with Apple and Google, but the marketplace would like more choices than that," tech analyst Jeff Kagan tells redOrbit.com. "If RIM is going to make a comeback, now would be the time."
One boasting point for the new OS is BlackBerry Flow. Flow allows seamless navigation across open applications. A user can easily jump from email to an app, and then browse the web while keeping all applications open. BlackBerry 10 also will introduce BlackBerry Hub, a central location for all messages, notifications, feeds and calendar events. The Hub is easily accessed by a single gesture, even when the device is occupied with another task such as a phone conversation or an open app.
BlackBerry has been one of the hold-outs for providing handsets with a keyboard. The iPhone and most Android handsets feature a soft keyboard, which has helped RIM retain a contingent of users. While RIM has offered a soft keyboard in the past, it is not specific as to whether BlackBerry 10 will have an actual keyboard. What it is clear on is that the keyboard will learn and adapt to each user. If the keyboard does adapt, it is expected to improve typing speed and accuracy, though autocorrect on the iPhone and Android have caused some serious - if not hilarious - misspellings.
Several carriers have already tested BlackBerry 10. Recent reports say that more than 50 carriers have handsets testing the OS in their labs.
While many believe the timing is a little too late for RIM, the company may be able to retain users by offering a replacement in time for user contract turnover. "RIM has lost lots of business in the last several years, however they have a unique advantage which will buy them more time. They have long term contracts with so many companies and governments both in the United States and globally. This is declining, but this still buys them more time. Not forever, but some more time," Kagan says.