Despite a gloomy future and recent layoffs, RIM [RIMM] is pushing ahead in full force with the release of its highly-anticipated BlackBerry 10 (BB10). Although RIM has not confirmed an official BlackBerry 10 release date, earlier this week RIM VP Alec Saunders said it would be out before the end of the year. Additionally, theeBlackBerry 10 Jam World Tour has already kicked off and unveiled a few incredible new features for the BlackBerry 10, including an upgraded camera, new keyboard design, and app switching capabilities.
At a BlackBerry 10 Jam session on June 7th, RIM began the event with a music video spoof of Tom Petty’s “The Waiting,” changing the lyrics to reflect BlackBerry 10’s progress. “It’s not quite ready yet,” Saunders sang. “Android and iOS, they’re no good for you. So grab those APIs…” At least they have a sense of humor about it.
At the event, RIM said that in the last year, the company has seen a 250 percent increase in new developers in the BlackBerry App World. In addition, the number of PlayBook apps increased 250 percent in the last quarter.
In an interview with the Jakarta Globe, here is how Saunders describes the BlackBerry 10:
We’re trying to take things that people love about BlackBerry and modernize that experience. BlackBerry 10 devices are about sharing and [being] social. The keyboard learns how you type and adapts to the way you work. The device can be used with one hand. You’re sitting at a meeting, your phone buzzes and you can check it casually.
Saunders is likely referring to the BlackBerry 10’s new keyboard. According to Engadget, RIM’s next smartphone will include a “new, smart touch keyboard that is said to adapt to your touches. It has elements of predictive text, like many other keyboards, but it also relies heavily on gestures.”
Here’s a look at the new keyboard:
Along with the keyboard, the BlackBerry 10 will have a new “camera tech.” The feature “allows you to change the faces of those pictured via additional pre- and post-shot frames.” Here’s a video of the software:
Finally, Engadget describes RIM’s app switching feature: by dragging your thumb from left to right across the screen, it reveals other apps running in the background.
Here are the dates of the BlackBerry 10 Jam World Tour for the remainder of the summer, with some additional dates recently added:
June 12 – Paris, France
June 13 – London, UK (Sold out)
June 21 – Toronto, ON, Canada (Sold out)
June 26 – Moscow, Russia
June 28 – Berlin, Germany (Sold out)
July TBA – Dubai, United Arab Emirates
July TBA – Cape Town, South Africa
July 2 – Bangalore, India
July 3 – Warsaw, Poland
July 4 – Delhi, India
July 6 – Beijing, China
July 9 – Singapore, Singapore
July 10 – Jakarta, Indonesia
July 11 – Montreal, Quebec
July 12 – Sydney, Australia
August TBA – Sao Paulo, Brazil
August – Buenos Aires, Argentina
August – Mexico City, Mexico