Archive for November, 2011

Near Field Communication

November 7th, 2011

Recently as more carriers are rolling out updates allowing users to take advantage of NFC on their BlackBerry 7 devices,  users want to know what exactly NFC is, what it does and how it can be used.

NFC stands for near field communication and is used to easily transfer data from one device to another.  It is currently available on the BlackBerry Bold 9900/9930, Curve 9350/9360/9370, and Bold 9790.  It can be used to transfer information such as contacts and files, or media such as pictures, videos and songs.  Data transfer can also be used between more than just two phones.  There is also the option to have your credit card information stored on your phone for quick payments at select retailers.  If a poster is equipped with an NFC tag, your phone can scan the tag.  Depending on what information the tag sends out, your phone will either download an app or give you more information on what is on the poster.  This is similar to using a tag reader app to take a picture of a QR (quick response) code.  QR pictures are difficult to take, because you have to be in the right lighting, the picture can’t be off-center and the code can’t be blurry.  Because of this, NFC tag scanning is much more reliable.  As soon as your phone passes over the tag you’re trying to scan, a dialog box will pop up to  ensure it was scanned.  As NFC becomes more common within phone providers, it can also be used as a hotel or ID key card.

Using NFCLauncher combined with ShortcutMe, you can create macros that you can write onto NFC enabled tags.  ShortcutMe is an app designed to do multiple things on your phone using one press of a button.  NFCLauncher lets you write these shortcuts to NFC tags that you can use anywhere.  A few ideas of ways to use these tags are to put one in your car and have it set your sound profile to loud, turn on bluetooth and turn on Drive  You can also put one on your office desk to turn your phone on silent, turn bluetooth off, and turn on WiFi.  For more ideas on what to do with tags, click here.  For help creating macros and to find out more about these applications, go here.

MasterCard recently approved using NFC with their program called PayPass.  This will allow MasterCard credit card holders with an NFC enabled phone to pay for their purchases using their phone.  Using PayPass, users will also be able to find out movie times and get rebates.  For now, they are testing this application with select banks, meaning you’ll have to wait to actually download the app.  By clicking this link, you can find merchants in your area that will accept PayPass.  For an application in the beginning stages, there are already lots of stores that are participating.

Many people expect NFC to become a widely used application as more cell phones come equipped with it.  We want to know how you’re using NFC on your BlackBerry!  Do you have tags designated for different shortcuts that you use throughout your day?  Or do you only use it when there is an NFC enabled poster?  Please kindly express your idea in the below comments.

RIM Launches BBM Music for BlackBerry

November 4th, 2011

RIM has launched a music service for BlackBerry Messenger called BBM music. BBM Music is designed to be more rewarding the more friends you have connected to the service.

RIM’s response to competing smartphone platforms’ music services offers a very innovative system of music discovery by allowing users to discover music through the BlackBerry Messenger social network.

Discovering new music through the social graph is certainly a very compelling way to discover new music on the mobile. It’s a system that has the potential to thrive in a world where searching through an enormous mobile music catalogues has become the accepted norm.

The BBM Music catalogue is based on the user’s country listed on their BlackBerry ID and the ability to listen to your friends’ shared songs may depend on that song also being available in your area. To share, users select 50 of their favorite songs with the ability to swap out 25 of those songs each month.

Brainwave Tuner gets inside your head and plays with your brain – and on sale for 50% off too

November 3rd, 2011

Music soothes the savage beast. The saying holds more truth than you may realize. Think of how many times you‘ve thrown on some music to help you vent, put you to sleep or even help you keep your focus. You may even have created playlists on your BlackBerry smartphone for numerous occasions. One BlackBerry smartphone application takes the idea of beneficial tones one step further; Brainwave Tuner. Regardless if you are attempting to mediate, catch some shut eye or even cram for a test, you can browse through 20 preset sound patterns to assist you. It’s amazing how simple tones with binaural beats can help you get your mind where you need it to be- all it needs is the right stimuli.


Brainwave Tuner was recently updated to version 2.6 and includes the following features:

  • Updated User Interface
  • Prolonged Sound Loops
  • Categorized waves and more sound patterns added in version 2.6
  • Examples of possible uses for brain stimulation
  • Relaxation and meditation by entraining your brain into desired states
  • Enhancement of learning capabilities (super learning)
  • Sleep induction (for treating insomnia or just for falling asleep quicker)
  • Focusing attention and enhancing awareness
  • Alleviation of headaches and migraines, as well as other pain
  • Preparation for stressful situations
  • Self hypnosis and/or subliminal programming

    Brainwave Tuner is available from the CrackBerry App Store for $3.99. You can use the coupon code CRACKBERRY201110 in order to receive a 50% discount. The promotion is valid until this Sunday at midnight, PST. Please note: This code will only work in the mobile app store or mobile app store client from your device.

Barnes & Noble Nook Tablet specs leak out, BlackBerry soon to have another competitor in the tablet space?

November 1st, 2011

Looks as though the push for the BlackBerry PlayBook may have taken another hit. The folks over at Android central have come across the details surrounding the new Barnes & Noble Nook Tablet and well — it’s no longer just and e-reader.

This time around, Barnes & Noble has taken on full tablet status with with HD movies, TV shows and music, all thanks to the likes of Netflix, Hulu Plus and Pandora and it’s highly customized presumed to be — Android core although it never the details never mention that. While Barnes & Noble has compared it to that of the Kindle Fire, the specs appear to be in line with that of the BlackBerry PlayBook as well

  • Dual core TI OMAP processor at 1.2GHz.
  • 0.48 inches thin weighing in at 14.1 ounces or 400 grams.
  • 16GB of internal storage, plus it can take up to a 32GB microSD card.
  • Battery life is listed as "to be determined," but it looks like BN’s expecting 8 hours with Wifi off, or 4 hours of video playback
  • Wifi, with 802.11 b/g/n.

Plus, you know — Barnes & Noble’s strategic marketing and reputation behind it. The original NOOK and NOOK Color did exceptionally well for Barnes & Noble. This version, will be announced on Monday with shipped units arring in stores come November 16th. While it’s too early to tell what the reaction of users will be when unveiled, it’s certainly another shot across the PlayBook’s bow.