Feeds

BlackBerry 10: AWESOME. If the hardware matches it, RIM jobs are safe

Our Vulture fondles his way through the new OS

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Opinion BlackBerry users have a love-hate relationship with their phones. The devices were often forced upon users rather than chosen. At the same time, the handhelds were the most usable and useful communications gadgets you could put in your pocket.

Yes, there are things a BlackBerry can't do very well or at all. But it is capable of doing so many things that its rivals can't match. You have to wonder if the rest of the phone industry has been taking some strange stupefying drug.

For example, the BlackBerry knows when it's in a holster. It knows when it's on a nightstand so it can do all kinds of "I'm in a nightstand now" things. You know what's "incoming" without taking it out of its case - you can tell that from the LED indicator. (Enthusiasts have written programs to allow you to set sophisticated 'Blinkenlights' sequences of coloured flashes, telling you in much more detail what is going on.) The obsession with usability extends to giving everything a shortcut key. You can set up a custom shortcut key to show you all the emails from Alice in the last three months, for example.

Nobody else does this. Has RIM replicated this in its new user interface for BlackBerry OS 10? We've already written up a quick preview of the QNX-powered mobile operating system - here's a follow-up hands-on tour of the kit.

First off, BlackBerry-maker RIM has acknowledged, or not forgotten, that getting to messaging fast is what the BlackBerry is all about. If BB10 has a "home" screen, it's the "Hub": a list of calendar appointments, and messages aggregated from SMS, email and social networks. Everything else is a kind of card-style overlay on this. Yes, there's a Palm-style app grid. Software can be put into folders, just like on Apple's iOS.

On Android and iOS notifications are a separate area. On BB10 - and Windows Phone, too - the notifications area is your home. And you can do a lot from the notifications screen. It's brutally utilitarian; Microsoft's Windows Phone 8 wins on style and novelty, but BB10 trumps all comers on efficiency. (You can only get one line of text on a tile in WinPho 8 - it's a bit limiting.)

The BB10 Hub

The BlackBerry OS 10 Hub (apologies for the phone cam pic of a phone)

Here's the Hub. Icons to trigger common actions are down the right-hand side:

A menu of message sources

Anything new? A quick summary view is always a swipe away

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
PEAK APPLE: iOS 8 is least popular Cupertino mobile OS in all of HUMAN HISTORY
'Nerd release' finally staggers past 50 per cent adoption
Microsoft to bake Skype into IE, without plugins
Redmond thinks the Object Real-Time Communications API for WebRTC is ready to roll
Microsoft promises Windows 10 will mean two-factor auth for all
Sneak peek at security features Redmond's baking into new OS
Mozilla: Spidermonkey ATE Apple's JavaScriptCore, THRASHED Google V8
Moz man claims the win on rivals' own benchmarks
FTDI yanks chip-bricking driver from Windows Update, vows to fight on
Next driver to battle fake chips with 'non-invasive' methods
DEATH by PowerPoint: Microsoft warns of 0-day attack hidden in slides
Might put out patch in update, might chuck it out sooner
Ubuntu 14.10 tries pulling a Steve Ballmer on cloudy offerings
Oi, Windows, centOS and openSUSE – behave, we're all friends here
Was ist das? Eine neue Suse Linux Enterprise? Ausgezeichnet!
Version 12 first major-number Suse release since 2009
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
Simplify SSL certificate management across the enterprise
Simple steps to take control of SSL across the enterprise, and recommendations for a management platform for full visibility and single-point of control for these Certificates.