Blackberry announced two new phones today, as well as the next iteration of the Blackberry operating system, OS 7. The Blackberry Bold 9900 and 9930 are HSPA and CDMA versions of the same idea: a wide-screen candybar phone with Blackberry’s vaunted keyboard and a high quality 640x480 capacitive touchscreen. According to PCMag, the phones will carry a 1.2Ghz Qaulcomm processor and come with 8GB of internal storage. The standard 5MP rear camera will be able to shoot 720p video, and they will come with NFC (Near Field Communications) capabilities enabled. No prices have been announced.
OS 7 isn’t being advertised as a revolutionary redesign like OS 6 was, but rather as an impressive upgrade to a platform that Rim believes doesn’t need very much fixing. It will bring something called “liquid graphics” to the OS, an idea that RIM hasn’t explained in detail yet, but promises to unveil in more detail later on in today’s Blackberry World Trade Show. What we do know is that it will enable “60fps performance with instant UI action/response. ” That’s a marketing-ese for “It will be faster”.
Another much awaited feature in the new OS is Blackberry Balance, which lets users separate their business and personal information on their phones. It separates data logically, instead of physically, meaning that you won’t have to actually flip between business mode and personal mode to get to each store of data. Everything will still be unified in the OS, but stricter security policies, for example, may be applied to data flagged as business. The most important function that this really brings to the table is the ability for IT administrators to selectively wipe corporate data off phones. If you leave your company, you only have to wipe a portion of your phone, and your personal email and contacts stay with you. It also restricts personal apps, like Facebook and Twitter, from accessing and accidentally distributing corporate data. As Blackberry starts to really struggle for its continued dominance over the enterprise and corporate mobile world, these features couldn’t have come at a better time.
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