Tuesday, 07 December 2004

Two major problems with the software that ships with the Blackberry 7290 provided by AT&T Wireless (now Cingular)… The AWS web browser simply SUCKS (more on a solution for that soon in a separate article), and there’s no built-in instant messaging application. I use MSN Messenger all the time. Blackberry's real-time email and mobile PIM functionality is great, and they beat all the others hands down in that area, but IM is more and more becoming a critical application for business users and consumers alike. Moreover, the device is comfortable and usable, and is a potentially great platform to deliver a variety of great applications beyond the core RIM applications.

 In that vein, a co-worker of mine pointed out one of the best little apps I have seen to date for the Blackberry – It’s called VeriChat (see http://www.verichat.com/verichat_bby).

Every now and then, a small application creator gets it right. That’s the case with this software. It’s available for a variety of platforms, including PalmOS, Pocket PC and Java devices:

  • Palm OS Devices/Phones
  • Pocket PC Devices
  • RIM Blackberry 6xxx and 7xxx Series handhelds (Java based Blackberry). This includes the 7100, 7730, 7750, 7780, 7290, 7230, 7280, 7510, 6710, 6750, 6510, 6230 and the 6280.
  • Treo 650/600
  • Treo 300/270/180
  • Samsung I500
  • Samsung I330
  • Samsung I300
  • Palm Tungsten W

And it works great. In real-time you can log onto MSN, Yahoo!, AOL and ICQ and chat simultaneously with buddies on all four IM networks. On the Blackberry, you can exit the application to satisfy your other Crackberry addictions like email, calendaring and web browsing (if you have a real browser that is), and VeriChat stays running in the background. You’ll be notified via an on-screen alert when someone messages you.

I thought at first that it would be some cheap, poorly executed little program that would flake out a lot and frustrate me, but as it turns out I was pleasantly surprised, to the point where I’ll be buying a copy of this myself tomorrow. It’s that good.

Nice to see something useful (something besides games) starting to be developed to run on these devices.

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Mobile | Tech
12/07/2004 22:37:11 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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