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RIM Buys Interesting User Interface Company TAT

BlackBerry makers Research in Motion (RIM) are buying a company called The Astonishing Tribe (or TAT). RIM CTO  David Yach said the following in a statement on the BlackBerry Blog:

Today we are pleased to confirm plans for The Astonishing Tribe (TAT) team to join Research In Motion (RIM). We’re excited that the TAT team will be joining RIM and bringing their talent to the BlackBerry PlayBook and smartphone platforms.

Bing for Mobile for BlackBerry Gets Update
Microsoft announced an update for its Bing for Mobile BlackBerry app. The app can now access Bing Maps by pressing the Bing Maps icon from a user’s BlackBerry device. 
In addition to this, the home screen has been updated, and a launcher has been added, so local, maps, directions and news can all be accessed faster. 

 

BlackBerry Users Get New Gmail, Google Docs Search Features
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There were a couple significant announcements for BlackBerry users today. First off, Google announced that its Google Mobile App for BlackBerry can now not only search for email and contacts on the device, but also search the cloud to find items in Gmail, Google Contacts, and Google Docs. 

iPod and Blackberry Listed as Most Prized Possession

Only 1% of people regard their wedding ring as their most valued asset,  accroding to a survey  carried out on Facebook in August on behalf of insurance firm Protect Your Bubble, with 12% of the 500 respondents voting for their iPods as their most prized possession, just outdoing the Blackberry, which received 11.5% of the votes.

Meanwhile, cars were the favourites of only 4% of people on the social network. Dogs got 9% of the vote and cats received 5%.

Verizon and RIM Announce BlackBerry Curve 3G

Verizon and Research in Motion (RIM) announced a new 3G version of the BlackBerry Curve today. It will become available on September 16 in business sales channels, and through Verizon in the coming weeks. 

The device comes in charcoal or fuchsia red. Here are the features and specs as noted in the announcement:

 

RIM Reportedly Acquires DataViz Assets

BlackBerry maker Research in Motion (RIM) has reportedly acquired most of the DataViz team. CrackBerry.com broke the news, which was confirmed by John Paczkowski at Digital Daily. DataViz is known for developing Documents to Go.

RIM Announces BlackBerry Curve 3G

Research in Motion (RIM) announced its latest smartphone today, the BlackBerry Curve 3G. The plan for the device appears to be to win over non-smartphone users.

Chatroulette Calls Upon the Power of Napster
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Marshall Kirkpatrick at ReadWriteWeb reports that Sean Parker (of Napster and Facebook fame) announced from Techonomy that he’s working with ChatRoulette. This is particularly interesting, as TechCrunch reported in June that Shawn Fanning (also of Napster fame) was advising Chatroulette.

Report: Android on 1 in 3 U.S. Smartphones Sold

The NPD Group has released a new smartphone report, finding that Motorola and HTC have driven Android to the lead in the U.S. Android is installed on one in three smartphones sold, according to the group.

Meanwhile, for the first time since 2007, RIM has slid to the number 2 position, as Android took the lead.

While Android accounted for 33% of all smartphones purchased in Q2, RIM accounted for 28%. Apple came in third at 22% with the launch of the iPhone 4.

RIM, AT&T Introduce BlackBerry Torch and BlackBerry 6
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Today, Research in Motion (RIM) and AT&T launched the BlackBerry Torch, the first smartphone to feature the new BlackBerry 6, which was also unleashed today.

Groupon Working Too Well For Some Businesses
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Groupon may be working a little too well for some businesses. As Mark D. Carlson and Emily Fredrix explore in an article, some local shops around the country are struggling to handle the customer loads that deals from Groupon are bringing in.

BlackBerry Use Limited in Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates

BBC News reports that two Gulf states have announced bans on some BlackBerry functions based on security concerns. The United Arab Emirates will block sending emails, accessing the Internet, and delivering instant messages to other Blackberry handsets, while Saudi Arabia will prevent the use of Blackberry to Blackberry instant messaging.

RIM Reportedly to Have iPad Competitor Ready Before Holidays

Everybody’s scrambling to get their iPad competitors out. Most recently, we heard what Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer had to say about his comany’s plans. Research in Motion (RIM) will apparently have its iPad competitor out in a few short months.

Google Speeds Up Dialing on Google Voice Apps
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Google announced today that it has launched an enhancement for the Google Voice mobile app on Android and BlackBerry devices. The tweak is designed to make placing calls quicker. The feature itself is called "Direct Access Numbers."

RIM Unveils BlackBerry Protect Security App
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Research in Motion (RIM) has unveiled a new security application for BlackBerry called BlackBerry Protect. The product allows users to wirelessly backup, restore, and locate their BlackBerry smartphones.

BlackBerry Protect comes equipped with remote device wipe, remote device lock, a "lost and found" screen, the ability to locate the device on a map, remote activation of the loud ringer.

Consumer Reports Gives iPhone 4 a Thumbs Down

Today, Consumer Reports called it "official". The iPhone 4 has reception problems. The organization says it reached the conclusion after testing three iPhone 4s purchased from separate retailers, in a controlled environment.

eBay’s BlackBerry App Offered In 6 More Countries

When announcing its acquisition of RedLaser one week ago, eBay noted that a purchase is made every two seconds using eBay’s mobile apps.  Only now, as impressive as that frequency is, the delay between purchases may decrease, since the eBay application for BlackBerry has become available in six more countries.

Fox Launches Mobile TV For BlackBerry users
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Fox Mobile has introduced the U.S. launch of Bitbop, a wireless entertainment subscription services that allows smartphone users to view full-length television shows on demand.

The service offers high-quality video and subscribers can choose from a selection of programming from a number of content partners. Full-length movies will be available later this year.

Official Twitter App for Blackberry Launched
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Twitter just announced that RIM has launched its official BlackBerry Twitter app. The two companies have worked closely together to create it.

Here’s what it looks like:

Twitter Blackberry app

Features include:

Google Maps Gets More Useful on BlackBerry

Google introduced a new version of Google Maps for BlackBerry devices today. There are quite a few significant features that come along with it.

LinkedIn BlackBerry App Debuts
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BlackBerry devices are, more than any other phones, associated with the business world.  And LinkedIn is, in most English-speaking markets, the dominant professional network.  It makes a great deal of sense, then, that LinkedIn has at last released LinkedIn for BlackBerry v1.0.