BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (RIM) announced on Monday their intentions to be the latest wireless-device maker to step into the tablet computer market with a touchscreen device called the BlackBerry PlayBook. At the company’s annual DevCon conference in San Francisco, RIM co-CEO Mike Lazaridis marketed the Playbook as “the first enterprise-ready tablet”. He also mentioned the tablet is designed to “amplify” the experience of the company’s BlackBerry smartphones, which can pair with the tablet through a Bluetooth connection.
The BlackBerry PlayBook is the Operating System and the type of product a lot of people been wanting to see from Research In Motion for a while now, and it looks like it's going to deliver. It boasts BlackBerry integration, out-of-the-box BlackBerry Enterprise Server compatibility and security features designed to appeal to businesses as well as true multitasking, gaming and multimedia capabilities. The operating system delivers a full web experience including Flash as well as some pretty robust hardware specs:
● BlackBerry Tablet OS with support for symmetric
● 7" LCD touch screen with full multi-touch and gesture
● 1 GHz dual-core processor
● 1 GB RAM
● Dual HD cameras (3 MP front facing, 5 MP rear facing),
supports 1080 p HD video recording
● Video playback: 1080p HD Video, h.264, MPEG, DivX,
● Audio playback: MP3, AAC, WMA
● HDMI video output
● Wi-Fi - 802.11 a/b/g/n
● Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
● Connectors: microHDMI, microUSB, charging contacts
● Open, flexible application platform with support for
WebKit/HTML-5, Adobe Flash Player 10.1, Adobe Mobile
AIR, Adobe Reader, POSIX, OpenGL, Java
● Ultra-thin and portable: Measures 5.1" x 7.6" x 0.4"
(130mm x 193mm x 10mm), weighing less than a
pound (approximately 0.9 lb or 400g)
Research In Motion did not announce a release date or pricing information, but did mention that the PlayBook will not be available until next year, sadly missing the holiday season. RIM intends to also offer 3G and 4G models in the future.
Without sacrificing the BlackBerry enterprise heritage, the future of BlackBerry looks promising once again!
Facebook's newest feature allows you to share your location with your friends.
Facebook has launched its new Places feature allowing you to share your current location by "checking in" from your smartphone. It’s basically Facebook’s version of Foursquare, a company that Facebook considered buying earlier in the year. If you never really got into earlier location-based social networking services or just want to know what it is or how to turn it off, read on for everything you need to know about Facebook Places.
Checking In Via Smartphone
Before you can share your location with your Facebook friends, Facebook needs to know where you are. Just open touch.facebook.com in your web browser (or use the Facebook for iPhone app on your iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad), and you'll see a tab under "Inbox" called "Places." For the iOS app, it'll show a new icon in the middle of the home screen.
Tap Places, and you'll see your recent check-ins as well as where your friends and checked-in from. From here, you can find more detailed information about the places your friends are checking into (map location, description, directions, comments, and other check-ins), or you can check yourself into a nearby location by pressing the Check In button at the top-right corner of the page.
The list of available locations comes from other people's check-ins and listings from Bing's mapping engine, so you might have to add your location manually by pressing “Add”, and it will take you to a page where you can fill out a name and description.
Once you tap Check In, you'll be presented with a list of nearby locations where other people have checked in. Tap the one you want to check into, and you can choose to comment on what you are doing there or add your Facebook friends to your check-in (Press the What are you doing? and Tag Friends With You buttons, respectively). Next, press the big Check In button, and it will show up on your News Feed.
Businesses Owning Their Facebook Place
While anyone can add a Facebook Place, business owners can turn the listing in Places into a proper Facebook Page, with Likes and a Wall. Start by checking in from your Place (or adding it, if it doesn't show up in the list of nearby Places), and click the link on the bottom of the page that says Is this your business?
Facebook doesn't want people cybersquatting on someone else's business listing, so you'll have to check a box certifying you're an official representative of the business and click Proceed with Verification to continue. Next, you'll have to provide your business's contact information, including your Federal Employee ID number (if applicable) and some kind of official documentation (Certificate of Formation, Articles of Certificate of Incorporation, a local business license, or a BBB accreditation).
Once you've submitted that information and received the okay from Facebook's User Operations team, you'll be in full control of your new Place.
Turning Off Facebook Places
If you decided Facebook Places isn't for you, there are a handful of settings you will have to change to fully deactivate it. Start by going to Account > Privacy Settings > Customize Settings under Sharing on Facebook. From here, you'll need to change the settings for Places I Check In, People Here Now, and Friends Can Check Me into Places (under the Things Others Share heading).
You'll need to change one more setting: Go back to Privacy Settings, choose the Edit Your Settings option under the Applications and Websites heading (lower-left), and click Edit Settings for Info accessible to your friends. Uncheck the Places I've Visited box, and you are good to go.
For a more detailed explanation the options available for Facebook Places check out the Facebook Blog, "Facebook Blog: Who, What, When, and now…Where”
At River Run we have had quite a few curious minds ask us about their latest smartphones, and whether or not it is a good idea to “jailbreak” or “root” their phone. There are plenty of reasons why or why not to jailbreak your phone, but more importantly everybody should first understand what it means exactly to jailbreak a phone.
Essentially, the primary purpose of jailbreaking or rooting a smartphone is to allow the phone to install and run third-party applications, freeing it from the limitations imposed on it by the device manufacturer and the carrier. For example, iPhone’s that are not jailbroken can only run applications obtained through Apple’s App Store.
Primarily speaking, the term jailbreaking is used in reference to Apple’s iPhone, shortly after its release in 2007. In fact, the first iPhone went on sale on June 29, 2007, and the first jailbreak was publicized on July 10, 2007. Soon groups dedicated to hacking the iPhone released jailbreaking applications so people without hacking skills could release their phones from AT&T and Apple’s lockdown.
Rooting is a term used in reference to the Android operating system, describing a similar process. In both jailbreaking and rooting, you take administrative control over the operating system. However, the purpose of rooting is a little different than jailbreaking. Android phones are not locked into running only apps that come from the Android Marketplace, but some apps require rooting. Rooting also enables you to install a custom ROM to run versions of Android that the handset maker doesn’t supply or support. Mobile phone carriers often place limitations on the phones they provide, and rooting lets you circumvent those limitations.
Is Jailbreaking or Rooting a Phone Legal?
Previously, jailbreaking or rooting your phone was considered illegal under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) enacted in 1998. However, last month on July 26th, Federal regulators lifted a cloud of uncertainty when they announced it was lawful to hack or "jailbreak" a phone.
Why Would I Want to Jailbreak or Root My Phone?
Jailbreaking or rooting allows the owner to do everything from customizing the look of your phone to installing third-party applications and customizations. Depending on how far you are willing to go, you can do even more than that: Jailbreaking even allows you to unlock your phone so you can use it with a carrier other than the one it was intended for. The customization options are endless for jailbroken or rooted phones.
Why Wouldn't I Want to Jailbreak or Root My Phone?
Once you jailbreak or root your phone, essentially, you are on your own. You may have voided your warranty, so you can't rely on your carrier or the manufacturer to fix any problems you encounter. All of the applications that jailbreak your phone are unauthorized and could damage or completely disable your phone. Your useful smartphone could end up as nothing more than a very expensive paperweight. It is true that if you do it incorrectly, you could end up with a useless device, especially when installing a custom ROM. However, in most cases, you can restore the phone to the factory settings if a mistake is made.
Perhaps a more important concern is that jailbreaking or rooting can compromise the security and or reliability of your smartphone. Remember, these phones are actually full-fledged computers, albeit small ones. The devices are vulnerable to malware and attacks just like laptop and desktop systems. An advantage of getting apps from Apple’s App Store is that the apps have been tested thoroughly. This applies, to a lesser extent, to the Android Marketplace. Unofficial apps can contain malicious code, or they may just be poorly written and cause your phone’s OS to crash. When applications have root access, they can do a great deal of harm to your phone’s software.
If you do decide the advantages outweigh the disadvantages, there are a number of tools available to help you with either jailbreaking or rooting your phone. A simple Google search will result in numerous websites, step by step videos and applications to assist you. River Run strongly recommends you weigh out all the pros and cons before attempting to alter your phone in any way.
Who says that Blackberrys should dominate the business market? Aside from being pretty cool and fun to use, iPhones can also lend themselves to the business world. In fact, the App Store is bursting at the seams with useful apps for the suit-wearing, executive iPhone user. But which ones should you go for? Which are a waste of time? Click the link below to discover five of the App Store's most useful iPhone apps for business networking.
iPhone Business Apps
Although laptops are certainly convenient, if you need to be online all the time, it can be difficult to locate and use public Wi-Fi if you are always on the go. However, if you have a BlackBerry smartphone, you can use it with your laptop to connect to the Internet. Although you have to be conscious of any provider fees associated with using your BlackBerry to connect to the Internet, it is a nice way to keep yourself constantly connected on the go.
This article will show you how to use your BlackBerry device to connect a Windows notebook or desktop computer to the Web.
BlackBerry as a Modem
If you carry a smartphone (or even just a "semi smart" model with text messaging and email), you might be surprised at how much someone phone could find out about you by examining the contents of your phone. "It's like a computer," says the forensics specialist in this article, but that's not quite right. The iPhone he was talking about is a computer, albeit a small one. Today's phones have faster processor, more memory and more storage space than our desktop machines had a short fifteen years ago. Raise your awareness by clicking on the article below.
The Secrets on Your Smartphone
With so many people now carrying iPhones and other "smart phones" which are basically handheld computers, the devices have become a much more attractive target for the bad guys who write viruses and other malicious software. Folks are now using their phones to pay bills, make purchases and engage in other financial transactions, which means an opportunity for hackers to steal passwords and identity information that can be lucrative for them. Get ready for a time when you need to install antivirus protection on your phone.