Author Archives: Eli Blumenthal
The leaked app (pic from Android Central)
We’ve got an update on the delay of the BBM apps for Android and the iPhone and it’s not good. On Monday BlackBerry’s head of BBM, Andrew Bocking, posted an update to the company’s Inside BlackBerry blog on the status of the now paused roll out of the BBM apps, and well, things are a bit more complicated than everyone thought. Basically, they’re complicated enough for BlackBerry to postpone the roll-out of the iPhone and Android BBM apps until at least next week. Bocking did not give any information beyond that for when the launch would be restarted, just saying that fixing the issues “will take some time and I do not anticipate launching this week.”
The problem causing these delays is with an unreleased version of the Android app that had a few bugs in it but still made its way online. 1.1 million people downloaded that app within eight hours causing some problems for BlackBerry’s servers. Whatever issue there was with that unreleased app has been fixed in the official version, but BlackBerry is now blocking that unreleased app and trying to make sure that their servers are ready for the amount of traffic that will hit them once the official app launches. So while it may be a little longer until you can return to BBM, hopefully this will mean a better experience once you do.
We’ll continue to keep you updated on the status of BBM for Android and iPhone, but in the meantime you can head on over to the BBM site and sign-up to be notified when the apps are ready to go.
We already knew when AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile were getting the new Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy Gear smartwatch and now we know when Sprint will be getting them too. Sprint announced that they will begin selling the Note 3 and Gear on October 4th, with the Note 3, available in either black or white, costing $349.99 with a new 2 year contract and the Gear an extra $299.99. Unfortunately this means that Sprint’s Note 3 is $50 more expensive than the AT&T and Verizon versions and $150 more expensive than the T-Mobile version (the Gear is $300 at all the carriers).
For those who don’t know, the Note 3 is the fully spec’d successor to the Note 2. As you’d expect, it’s got everything you’d expect in a new 2013 superphone: a 5.7 inch 1080p HD screen (which is larger and much sharper than the Note 2?s 5.5 inch 720p screen), a super fast 2.3 GHZ quad-core processor with 3 GB of RAM (basically this thing is crazy fast), and a 13 megapixel back camera with 2 megapixel camera on the front for HD video chat, selfies, and doing things like Dual Camera. The Note 3 is slightly thinner than the Note 2 and packs a larger battery which hopefully will mean even better battery life than the Note 2’s (which was already pretty great). It also runs Android 4.3 with some improvements to Samsung’s custom software like a better Multi-Window mode.
The Galaxy Gear meanwhile is Samsung’s first Android smartwatch and can do things like run apps, take pictures, let you know what new notifications you have and of course, tell you the time. We saw both the Note 3 and Gear in person and while we were impressed with the Note 3, at $300 the Galaxy Gear– while very cool– doesn’t seem to be worth the money just yet.
For more info on the Sprint Note 3 head to Sprint’s site here.
While this was supposed to be the weekend for BBM to finally hit Android and the iPhone it now looks it was all a false start. BlackBerry did plan on releasing the app for both platforms this weekend, but due to a mix of demand and an unreleased Android app (like the one from the pic above) BlackBerry has paused the rollout until further notice.
According to a post on their Inside BlackBerry blog, an unreleased version of app was posted online and downloaded a pretty incredible 1.1 million times in the first eight hours of being available. But that app, as unreleased apps often do, had some issues. While BlackBerry is trying to fix those issues, they decided to pull the app from both the App Store and Google Play Store in the interim. For those who managed to download an official version of the app, BlackBerry also confirmed that those has already downloaded the official BBM for iPhone app will be able to continue to use it, though BlackBerry will disable the BBM for Android app until they can re-release the official version in the Play Store. Regular BBM for BlackBerry will continue to work just fine.
— BBM (@BBM) September 22, 2013
No word on when BlackBerry will restart the roll-out or when it will hit the US, but we’ll let you know here once they do.
More info: BBM.com
The iPhone 5C went on pre-order last week, iOS 7 came out today and BBM hits the iPhone this weekend but for iPhone users the biggest thing to happen this week is the launch of the iPhone 5S this Friday. The 5S is the most fastest, most powerful iPhone yet with an even better camera and really cool fingerprint scanner called Touch ID and for many is the iPhone to upgrade to. Well, if the 5C isn’t for you and you’re ready to upgrade to the 5S here’s what you need to know to pick it up on launch day.
Unlike the 5C, there were no pre-orders for the 5S and rumors are that supply on Friday will be very low. There are rumors floating around that supply issues is why Apple didn’t put it up for pre-order, they want to make they had enough ready to go on launch day (note: Apple usually sells millions of iPhones during launch weekend and they probably have millions ready for the 5S they just wanted to be extra cautious here). Anyways, if you want that new 5S right away here’s where you can grab it.
Texting and driving is no joke. According to the National Safety Council over 100,000 crashes a year involve drivers who are texting. The fact that it’s not more is quite honestly a miracle. Think of how many people you know who text and drive. We all know its wrong and that it can get us or someone else killed, yet so many of us know people who do it.
As a follow-up to last year’s It Can Wait campaign, AT&T has released a new documentary called “From one second to the next.” The video focuses on four accidents, some of them fatal and all of which were caused because the drivers, who are all around our ages, was texting while they drove. The video has been distributed to over 40,000 high schools and according to Slate, “hundreds of safety organizations and government agencies.” Seeing as today is Drive 4 Pledges Day it’s as good a time as any to take the pledge to never text and drive.
The video is a bit long at 34 minutes and while it’s very intense it really is a must watch. All it takes is just one glance down to ruin your life or take someone else’s. No text, tweet or update is worth it.
For more info and to take the pledge yourself go to ItCanWait.com.
The summer officially ends this weekend and as promised BlackBerry will deliver BBM by then. While they cut it really close to missing their promise to have BBM for iPhone and Android out by the end of the summer, BlackBerry today announced that BBM for Android will be out this Saturday, September 21st, at 7 AM Eastern Time. BBM for iPhone will be available a several hours later at 12:01 AM local time (meaning when its 12:01 AM where you are) on Sunday the 22nd. BBM for Android will be available to download from the Google Play Store while BBM for iPhone will be available at that time in the App Store.
BBM for iPhone and Android brings many of the BBM features you know and love including single person and group chats, the ability to share photos and voice notes, a unique BBM PIN etc. The Android version even allows you to add a BBM contact using NFC just by just taping your phone with your friend’s (assuming you both have Android/BlackBerry 10 phones with NFC). You yet be able to do video chats, screen share or BBM voice calls, but BlackBerry has said that those features would be coming as updates in a “future version.”
BBM for iPhone will work on iPhones running iOS 6 or iOS 7 (so the 3GS, 4, 4S, 5 and new 5C and 5S), while BBM for Android will work on phones running Android 4.0 or later (Ice Cream Sandwich and Jelly Bean).
So are you excited for this or have you moved on already to iMessage/WhatsApp/something else?
More info: BlackBerry
It’s time. As expected Apple has made iOS 7 available to download right now. If you’ve got an iPhone (4, 4S or 5), iPad (2,3,4 and Mini) or 5th generation iPod touch then connect to WiFi and go to Settings–> General–> Software Update to grab the new software.
iOS 7 brings a lot of new things to make your old iDevice seem new again including new colorful icons, a better notification center and better multitasking, iTunes Radio (Apple’s version of Pandora that’s free to stream with ads), a new Photos app, and much improved Siri. It also brings Control Center, probably the most useful new feature that makes it much easier to do things like adjust brightness, turn off WiFi/Bluetooth and get to the flashlight just by swiping up from the bottom of your iPhone/iPad/iPod. For those looking for the full wrap up of everything the new iOS has to offer we’ve got all the details on what’s new here .
So get to downloading and let us know what you think.
With the new iPhone 5C and 5S hitting stores this Friday it’s easy to forget that a huge update is coming out to current iPhone owners today. That’s right today is the day iOS 7 comes to the iPhone (4,4S and 5), iPad (2,3,4 and Mini) and 5th generation iPod Touch.
Now while many expected it to be available at 12:01 AM, Apple rarely has released major updates at midnight and usual doesn’t release new updates until the early afternoon. iOS 5 and iOS 6 were both released at around 1 PM Eastern (10 AM for those on the West Coast), and we’d expect them to release iOS 7 around 1 PM this afternoon as well. The good news is that still gives you some time to backup your iPhone to iCloud or your computer before you do it.
Now for those not sure how to update it’s pretty simple. Just connect to WiFi on your iDevice and go to Settings, General, Software Update. It’ll download and install from there and you can also keep using your device while it’s downloading (you can also always connect your iPad/iPhone/iPod to iTunes on your computer and do it from there). Assuming you’re on a decent WiFi connection and Apple’s servers aren’t completely killed by the initial demand you should be able to download and have the update installed within a half hour. And while the update shouldn’t affect any pictures, apps or other things stored on your phone it’s probably a good idea to back it up first before you update just to be safe.
iOS 7 is a pretty major update for iOS and if you thought your current iPhone was looking a bit old this will definitely help make it feel a bit newer. For those who don’t know what’s so great about iOS 7, check out our earlier post about what’s new here.
Earlier this month Samsung unveiled the Galaxy Note 3 and new Galaxy Gear smartwatch. The Note 3 is the highly anticipated follow-up of last years Note 2, while the Galaxy Gear is a “smartwatch” that, when paired with the Note 3, does a lot more than just tell the time. Both are very impressive but the one you’re gonna care about most right now is the Galaxy Note 3, and if you’re looking for a new Note you’ll be happy to know that this looks like it’s a very worthy successor to the Note 2.
The iPhone 5C goes on pre-order tonight at around 3:01 AM Eastern Time (or 12:01 AM for those on the West Coast). All the major carriers will sell the iPhone 5C and all will be taking pre-orders starting tonight. If you’ve been waiting for the 5C here are all the details on where you can pre-order one of the newest iPhones.