November 2, 2006

Gmail goes native on cell phones

Permalink | November 2nd, 2006

Gmail on your cell phone

Not content with simply offering Gmail via a mobile friendly website, Google is now bringing your mail to your cell phone natively. This new Java app, which works with most Java enabled cell phones equipped with a data plan, was quietly released today. The company claims that their latest offering will close the gap between the classic way people get e-mail — sitting at a computer — and the slow-as-molasses reality of receiving e-mail on cell phones. But is it really faster?

My short review of Gmail for mobile is after the jump, so click the link to…

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August 8, 2006

The HackBerry

Permalink | August 8th, 2006

BlackBerry 8100

From BlackBerry to CrackBerry to HackBerry. Computer consultant Jesse D’Aguanno has developed a program which can allow attackers to exploit the trusted connection between a BlackBerry and a company’s internal server. Dubbed BBProxy, the program D’Aguanno wrote creates an encrypted data tunnel between the handheld device and internal server which can be very difficult to detect using traditional intrusion detection systems. The program must be loaded onto the BlackBerry either willingly or as a Trojan horse via email (assuming that someone will readily pull down and install an unknown attached program).

D’Aguanno, who has met with Research in Motion about the issue, said the company posted two new documents on its website this week in anticipation of his presentation at the DefCon hacker convention in Las Vegas.

July 25, 2006

Google Mobile Maps gets traffic updates

Permalink | July 25th, 2006

Google Maps

And just like that, Google Mobile Maps gives you real-time traffic information.

For those who: a) don’t have a built-in decent web browser on their phone to access the other websites that offer real-time traffic updates, b) don’t want to pony up the cash for a GPS with traffic information, or c) simply love Google too much to opt for anything else, Google has released an update to their Google Mobile Maps application. On top of being much faster than the previous release, this latest version also offers real-time traffic updates and allows you to mark “favorite” locations. Upgrade away!

BlackBerry users (at least those with the 8700g) take note: if you already have a previous version of Google Maps installed, you should manually delete it. Otherwise you will be left with both versions on your handheld with no way to delete the previous version short of re-initializing your handheld — trust me, I learned the hard way…

June 28, 2006

BlackBerry does video

Permalink | June 28th, 2006

Sona video player for BlackBerry

Crackberry BlackBerry addicts can rejoice, CanWest MediaWorks has announced that owners of the 8700 and 7130 can now download Sonaplayer, a video player for RIM’s ubiquitous devices. The player allows your BlackBerry to download and play video files. The catch, the media has to be encoded in their proprietary format — there has been no word on the ability ripping your own content. The other catch, the software is being currently being offered as beta — in other words, you should be prepared for it to crash your device.

Product Page

May 2, 2006

RIM vs Visto

Permalink | May 2nd, 2006

BlackBerry goup

The dust is still settling from the RIM vs NTP battle and already another company has crawled out from under the rocks to take a stab at the BlackBerry maker. Visto, fresh from a patent infringement victory on Friday against Seven Networks, has now set its sights on RIM, claiming that they (along with Microsoft and Good Technology, both of whom they are already in court against) are infringing on their patents. Unlike NTP, however, Visto is not seeking a settlement, they want to shut down competitors or at least force them to alter their products.

“We’re not seeking a royalty, we’re seeking an injunction,” Visto’s co-founder and senior vice president, Daniel Méndez, said. “Unlike NTP, we are a company with 400 employees and a viable business to protect. That’s what we’re trying to do with these actions.”

Mr. Bogosian said his company had not tried to negotiate a settlement with R.I.M., which is based in Waterloo, Ontario, because he believed the company was aware of Visto’s patents but had made no attempt to license them.

Visto has not yet specified how RIM is infringing their patents, but all four of the patents in question were issued after RIM’s — three in 2000 and one in 2004. RIM’s patents, from which its BlackBerry is based, date back to 1997. That’s mildly funny since Visto’s CEO, Brian Bogosian, declared on Friday that Visto’s intellectual property serves as the basis for this industry’s birth. Who is he trying to fool?!

In a statement RIM has issued warning that it is considered a counter patent infringement suit.

April 18, 2006

T-Mobile rocks the new BlackBerry 8700g

Permalink | April 18th, 2006

T-Mobile rocks the new BlackBerry 8700g

T-Mobile is (finally) offering the new BlackBerry 8700g; complete with EDGE, a 312MHz Intel Xscale processor, QVGA color display, Bluetooth and Quad-band. The 8700g gives you a new, faster way of getting your crackberry fix. The cost? $399, or $299 after mail-in rebates.

February 10, 2006

BlackBerry has a workaround, so they claim

Permalink | February 10th, 2006

BlackBerry has a workaround, so they claim

Yesterday morning Research in Motion announced that it had a viable workaround that it could put into place should the courts rule in NTP’s favor on February 24th.

The workaround is incorporated into a software update called BlackBerry Multi-Mode Edition. The company says that this update has passed legal opinion, and has been successfully tested..

RIM has also filed new patent applications with the Patent Office to cover its workaround designs.

Should an injunction occur, RIM says its Canada-based Network Operations Center iwould remotely activate what it calls In the event of an injunction, RIM is able to remotely activate “US Mode” and the workaround would automatically kick in for each handset containing the Multi-Mode Edition software update.

If such a viable solution really exists, why doesn’t RIM simply enable it and wash their hands of this whole mess?

More: NY Times

[via BBHub]

February 6, 2006

An alternative to the BlackBerry

Permalink | February 6th, 2006

An alternative to the BlackBerry

Sony has unveiled their new M600 Smartphone. The tri-band phone offers a 240×320 touchscreen, 80 MB of memory, corporate email services, and dual function qwerty keyboard. Oh, and did I mention it also boasts UMTS and runs Symbian OS?!

M600i has all you need to keep in touch with friends and colleagues in every way, every day. It gives you secure push e-mail, Internet and company intranet access. And when you’re browsing the Web with your M600i, you can still make and take calls. M600i is a true 3G multitasking device. Send and receive e-mail, edit and re-send attachments and, if a compatible printer is nearby, you can print attached documents.

Touchscreen navigation is intuitive. Tap any function icon on the M600i desktop to open an application.

M600i is a Symbian OS device. This makes it possible to add applications and useful tools to your phone including navigation, travel and organizer enhancements.

With all the hoopla over the BlackBerry, this just might be a viable alternative. Maybe.

Product Page: Sony Ericsson M600

[via All About Symbian and Engadget]

February 2, 2006

You can take my BlackBerry when you pry it from my cold dead fingers

Permalink | February 2nd, 2006

You can take my BlackBerry when you pry it from my cold dead fingers

The Department of Justice seems to be going through premature BlackBerry withdrawals. As the February 24th deadline rushes closer, the DOJ has strengthened its objections on the NTP vs RIM case.

The Justice Department sharpened its objections Wednesday to a threatened shutdown of the BlackBerry e-mail system, saying it would be difficult to close it without affecting government users.

The government provided a list of 138 agencies that may need to be excluded from a shutdown, along with their related contractors. The list includes the Central Intelligence Agency, the Army and the National Security Agency.

The government left the door open for an injunction that would leave the network in operation but stop sales of new BlackBerries to private users.

Stop or suspend sales to new users, sure, fine … just don’t turn off my crackberry!

[via Business Week]

January 30, 2006

The story behind NTP vs RIM

Permalink | January 30th, 2006

The story behind NTP vs RIM

Here’s a very interesting article explaining the back story behind the now infamous NTP vs RIM case involving wireless email and the BlackBerry.

Patently Absurd

By BARRIE MCKENNA and PAUL WALDIE AND SIMON AVERY
Saturday, January 28, 2006 Posted at 1:44 AM EST
From Saturday’s Globe and Mail

It’s the kind of story even a careful newspaper reader might overlook. Tucked at the bottom of an inside page of The Wall Street Journal was a four-paragraph item beneath the innocuous headline: “Pager Maker Gets Patent for E-Mail Delivery.”

Canada’s Research In Motion Ltd. was suing U.S. rival Glenayre Electronics Inc. to enforce a newly acquired patent on its BlackBerry wireless device.

“BlackBerry knockoffs will now need a licence from us,” RIM co-chief executive officer James Balsillie warned. “The amateurs out there have to stop.”

That was May 18, 2001. And the now-ubiquitous BlackBerry was just emerging in the United States as a hot new toy for busy executives, politicians and, most notably, lawyers.

[full article after the jump]
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