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RIM is now BlackBerry, rolls out latest platform

Jan 31 2013, 00:57 IST
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Thorsten Heins, CEO, BlackBerry, introduces the BlackBerry 10, in New York on Wednesday. 	AP Thorsten Heins, CEO, BlackBerry, introduces the BlackBerry 10, in New York on Wednesday. AP
SummaryTwo new devices announced, one touch and the other with a keypad

Research In Motion is no more. On Wednesday, the Canadian phone manufacturer announced that it has renamed itself to BlackBerry. The company launched a new operating system called BlackBerry 10 on Wednesday.

Two new BlackBerry devices – Z10 and Q10 – were unveiled at an event in New York. The Z10 is a 4.2-inch touchscreen device with a high-resolution (356 pixels per inch) display. The Q10 is a device with a physical QWERTY keyboard. Both phones feature 1.5 Ghz dual core processors with 2 GB of RAM, 16 GB of internal storage, and an expandable memory card slot.

BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins said: “The focus is no longer on mobile communications, it is on mobile computing. With a simple swipe, you can share, create and connect. Integration is vital the platform. We have the best typing experience in the world.”

The OS signals a shift in focus to multi-tasking. Software head Vivek Bhardwaj said: “BlackBerry Flow bring seamless movement between apps to the platform. While watching a YouTube video, you can use BlackBerry Peek to take a look at BlackBerry Hub, which has all your social networks and contacts. You can also switch between running apps.”

BlackBerry touch keyboard has been designed with a focus on accuracy. While typing, users will see suggested words below some alphabets. When they swipe upwards, these words will be “flicked on to the message”. Heins called it “writing without typing”. Bhardwaj claimed users will be able to type easily with one thumb.

Another important feature is BBM video chat, which uses the internet. The company also added a screen sharing feature to the platform. This means users can control other BlackBerry phones anywhere in the world through remote access.

The new phones will be available in the UK on Thursday, Canada on February 5 and the US in March. The Z10 will cost $149.99 in Canada, with a three-year contract. The company did not announce price or availability for India.

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