RIM, the Canadian based tech company, has its work cut out for it tomorrow to win over skeptics while showing that it can be in the game with its new operating system, BlackBerry 10, built on QNX. Two handsets will be launched, the X10 with a physical QWERTY keyboard and the Z10 with an all touch screen. There are no buttons on the face of the Z10 device, which will use gestures familiar to the Playbook crowd to navigate between open apps that are running. The new BlackBerry 10 OS takes the Playbook build/gestures to the next level with one hand navigation. The user is able to flow to the message hub, from any open app, with an upward motion from the bottom and slight hook to the right. Not releasing allows one to peek into what is in the message hub, releasing or completing the hook takes one into the hub. There are several gestures that are easy to learn to do things with one hand, on the fly. Add to this novel re-designed gesture based OS, the new digital keyboard that adapts and guesses the next word over the next letter allowing a flick with the thumb upwards to add the word, and typing is re-invented. The keyboard adapts to the user’s imprints on the letters so that if one is off a letter, after correction, the keyboard picks that letter at the next occurrences of this “mistype”. The camera app is, like everything else, re-engineered, so that it has time shifting, allowing for a correction of the final image by selecting an “exposure” with a complete smile or open eyes.
The success of this new platform depends on how well the executives pitch and market it. Already, several carriers have been impressed and some (UK Carriers) will be launching the phones in store next day (January 31, 2013). Others like, Verizon, Rogers, Telus and Bell will do so by early February, if not sooner. AT&T, TMobile and several global carriers in, Africa, South America, the Middle East, and Europe will follow, as part of this global implementation.
RIM is investing heavily in marketing with its first toss into the Super Bowl, with AVM BBDO preparing a highly anticipated commercial. The pitch for the new platform will take place tomorrow, globally, with the event centered in NYC at Pier 36. The launch will be streamed live:
We will be blogging/tweeting the key features and developments throughout the day.
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