It’s been a long time since we first mentioned BlackBerry Shield, but that all changed Thursday. BNews.pl managed to get a hold of a handful of screenshots of the security service which lets users remotely locate, lock and wipe their misplaced and/or stolen BlackBerry just like iPhone users can do Find My iPhone. When it’s released — and it’s not clear when this is going to happen, other than it’s going to enter testing “very soon” — BlackBerry Shield will be free to BIS users. More →
Hot on the heels of the release of BlackBerry Internet Service 3.0, RIM has just posted the details for BIS 3.1 in the BlackBerry Technical Solutions Center. The main enhancement to be brought forth in BIS 3.1 is wireless contact synchronization support — something which Gmail users have been enjoying for a while now — but for Alt-N, Windows Live Hotmail and Yahoo! Mail accounts, things get a little murky (the latter two require OS 6.0). Synchronizations will be scheduled to occur every four hours. Less noteworthy but something that people who constantly swap ‘Berries should take note of, is that you’ll no longer be able to log into your BIS account through a computer, swap your PIN and then use a different device. From BIS 3.1 onwards, you’ll first need to insert the SIM card currently tied to your BIS account into the new phone, log into BIS, swap the PIN and then proceed as normal. CDMA users will have to contact their carrier. Happy? Sad? Wondering when you’ll be able to wirelessly sync your calendars? Let us know your thoughts! More →
Not a whole lot to say here other than it looks like RIM has finally flipped the switch on 2-way Gmail sync, a feature of BIS 3.0, for BIS customers in North America. Overnight our tips line was lit up by BlackBerry addicts who ecstatically reported that 2-way syncing of of read, unread and sent email messages for Gmail accounts was now active, although we should caution we also received reports that the option for syncing came and went ad nauseum. Let’s just hope that the aforementioned issues were nothing more than minor glitches and will be ironed over shortly. How are things looking for you?
If you noticed your BIS-enabled BlackBerry was quieter than usual late last night, here’s the reason why: RIM’s North American BIS servers were temporarily out of action as they were being upgraded from BIS 2.8 to BIS 3.0. The new features that have been brought through to BIS 3.0 are by no means earth shattering, but a full change-log is awaiting your perusal after the break.
BlackBerry addicts that keep strange hours should keep a stiff drink on hand between 2AM and 6AM EDT on Sunday, March 28th, because those are the hours RIM will be hard at work updating its North American servers to BIS 3.0. During this four hour upgrade process literally every BIS user will have to go without BlackBerry services, but since it’s happening so late in the East, it’s going to be the poor ol’ West Coasters that are going to feel the brunt of this. Either way you slice it, the gain is worth the pain as BIS 3.0 brings with it 2-way Gmail sync (in the EMEA region this is being slowly introduced, so take that as a sign the same will happen here), the ability to add/delete Gmail labels, support for .wma and OpenOffice files, and a few other assorted trinkets that concern carrier-related error messages. Sweet. More →
BerryReview is reporting that one of its solid connections has confirmed the arrival of BIS 3.0 sometime in the next week. We’ve already told you about some of the leaked features of BIS 3.0, but here is a quick recap:
- True two-way synchronization with Gmail
- Ability to create Gmail labels with Advanced Gmail Plugin
- Support for Windows Media Audio files
- Support of OpenOffice files
- Carrier specific error messages with relevant contact information
BBLeaks got their hands on some RIM training documentation that details new features included in the yet-to-be-scheduled BlackBerry Internet Service (BIS) 3.0 update. Some of the documented improvements include:
- Gmail read/unread status will now sync on handsets with Enhanced Google Mail Plug-in and BlackBerry OS 4.6 or higher
- Create and delete labels on device with Enhanced Google Mail Plug-in and BlackBerry OS 4.6 or higher
- Support for additional attachment types, including: OpenDocument presentations (.odp), OpenDocument spreadsheets (.ods), OpenDocument text (.odt), OpenDocument text templates (.ott), and Windows Media Audio (.wma)
- BlackBerry smartphone users will be instructed to contact their specific carrier and will be
provided with carrier contact information in HTML and WAP error messages.
The Gmail functionality and extra attachment support are definitely welcome additions to BIS’ repertoire; it does, unfortunately, leave all other BIS IMAP users out in the cold.
Back on the 3rd we reported the release of BIS 2.8 to North American BlackBerry users, and with that came two-way contact synchronization with Google Mail — one of the new wiz-bang features. Today we’re getting reports from BIS users that now have the Google Mail contact synchronization option available to them from their carriers BIS website. While this doesn’t do anyone much good, as two-way contact syncing requires BlackBerry OS 5.0 or better, it seems to indicate the folks in Waterloo have the full court press on to finally get 5.0 out the door. Or you know, there’s like mad new BlackBerrys coming or something.
North American BlackBerry Internet Service users have an excuse to drink mimosas this morning — RIM and its carrier partners have flipped the switch on BIS 2.8. As we told you some time ago, BIS 2.8 offers enhancements that countless that non-corporate types have been yammering for for ages including but not limited to:
- Two-way wireless synchronization [every four hours] with Google Mail Contacts and the Address Book on the BlackBerry smart phone:
- Synchronize Google Mail contacts quickly and easily to the BlackBerry smart phone
- Add or edit Contacts and the Contacts are automatically updated, whether they are updated on the computer or BlackBerry smart phone
- Note: Two-way wireless Contact synchronization with Google Mail Contacts requires BlackBerry® Device Software 5.0 and configuration through email settings on the BlackBerry smart phone. Additional requirements and constraints may be found within the BlackBerry Internet Service 2.8 Documentation Kit. This feature is not supported on BlackBerry smart phones with BlackBerry® Connect™ software.
- Enhancements to email setup and settings:
- Automatic Login now supports most billing identifiers, which allows new subscribers with wireless service providers that use PIN, IMEI, or ESN as a billing identifier to create BlackBerry Internet Service accounts from the BlackBerry smart phone, without having to create a login user name and password
- Note: This feature will be available approximately one week after the BlackBerry Internet Service upgrade.
- Windows Live Hotmail revalidation:
- With BlackBerry Internet Service 2.8, new Windows Live Hotmail mail integrations will be defaulted to a protocol that is designed so as not to require 90 day reauthorization.
- Note: Existing BlackBerry smart phone users accessing Windows Live Hotmail using Microsoft MSP will still be required to revalidate their Windows Live Hotmail account every 90 days.
So how did you find the upgrade? Any hiccups requiring you to remove and re-add your email accounts, or is everything peachy?
It seems our friends in Waterloo have been busy cooking up an update for BlackBerry Internet Service as a Knowledge Base article and a user guide for BIS 2.7 have both popped up on the BlackBerry Technical Solution Center website. As you may recall, the current incarnation of BIS, BIS 2.6, launched in North America on March 21st of this year and brought with it improved user support, a way to change signatures on device, IMAP integration for Gmail and the ability to display password characters when logging into ones BIS account. Not being one to shy away from outdoing itself, BIS 2.7 looks to add some revolutionary new features such as an improved Help screen, a new close option for the Email Settings app as well as support for Thai and Indonesian character sets. Mmm hmm.
Thanks to everyone that sent this in!
We have some good news for North American BlackBerry users this morning as RIM has finally completed its upgrade to BIS 2.6. This means not only can all of you non-corporate types can have a watered-down glimpse of BES life with one-way IMAP Gmail synchronization and the ability to change your email signature on the go via the BIS WAP site, but you can also do something that no self-respecting BES admin would ever let you do by choosing not to black out your password characters. In case you forgot what else BIS 2.6 brings to the table, feel free to hit up the jump and for a quick refresher course — but before you do we have to clear one thing up: if you want to be able to make use of IMAP Gmail, you have to delete your account and re-add it from within your BIS admin.
No doubt there were a lot of peeved BIS users the day RIM enabled BES 5, but don’t fret – RIM finally just took the wraps off the latest edition of BIS, albeit in a not-so-public way. Discussed in a Knowledge Base article, RIM highlighted a lot of the new features non-corporate BlackBerry users can look forward to. The bad news? Apart from complimentary one way syncing of Gmail accounts via IMAP instead of POP and the ability to edit signatures via the WAP browser, there is really nothing here to get excited about. Well, unless you’re Dutch. Hit the jump for the whole enchilada.