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BlackBerry Limited Message Board

  • digitalmarket digitalmarket Aug 15, 1999 10:44 PM Flag

    Blackberry Is A Convenient Way To Stay

    Take Your E-Mail On The Road -- Checking E-Mail
    While On The Run Can Be A Major Hassle, But Research In
    Motion's Blackberry Is A Convenient Way To Stay In Touch

    Aug. 13, 1999 (InformationWeek - CMP via COMTEX) --
    Users on the go often face a fairly daunting procedure
    to get their E-mail-find a phone connection, boot
    their PC, initiate a modem connection, download E-mail,
    and reply to it. Now, Research In Motion Ltd.
    provides a two-way pager that lets users receive and
    respond to E-mail without any difficulties from almost
    anywhere in major U.S. and Canadian metropolitan areas.

    The BlackBerry handheld is the size of a two-way
    pager-4 ounces and 3.5 by 2.5 by 1 inches. It comes with
    a plastic holster for a belt and a serial-port
    docking cradle for a PC. The unit has tiny alphanumeric
    buttons in a QWERTY arrangement. Research In Motion says
    users can type as fast as 40 words per minute on the
    small keyboard, which seems unlikely to us. But with
    practice, it's possible to create a response of a few
    hundred words. BlackBerry can be held in both hands while
    standing or sitting, using thumbs to type-making it easy
    to use while doing other things such as waiting in

    There's also a small wheel that turns to
    scroll messages or move the cursor between menu items;
    pressing the wheel is the equivalent of clicking a mouse.
    The wheel makes it easy to scroll through messages or
    down a contact list; it would be good to see more
    manufacturers adopt this mechanism.

    The bit-addressable
    display shows as many as five lines by 30
    Its dim backlighting is suitable for use only in

    almost-complete darkness. In a well-lit environment, the screen
    is tricky to read unless you hold it just right.

    BlackBerry is powered by a single AA battery. The company
    claims 500 hours of life for one battery; the unit we
    tested operated for more than three weeks on a single
    cell when we were careful to turn it off at night.

    Inside BlackBerry is an Intel 386 processor, 2 Mbytes of
    Flash RAM, and a two-way radio-frequency modem to
    connect with BellSouth's paging services.

    BlackBerry firmware includes a simple E-mail client, address

    book, calendar, and task-list software. All are quite
    usable. The product also includes software for a Windows
    9x/NT PC, called BlackBerry Desktop; with the docking
    cradle, it provides
    synchronization between the
    handheld and Microsoft Outlook.

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