Friday, August 17, 2012

BlackBerry executive confirms BlackBerry 10 is for real, “the hardware and software is there”

It’s about time! Research In Motion (RIM) has confirmed that the next generation of BlackBerry 10 (BB10) devices is in beta testing. Thorsten Heins, RIM’s chief executive, recently shared that the hardware for BB10 is finished and the software is almost complete. Analysts and BlackBerry lovers around the world collectively sighed upon hearing the confirmation.

Heins said that the BB10 will seek to change the way people use smartphones. For example, the new BB10 will enable users to switch, shift or alternate between apps with a simple thumb swipe. The company is calling this feature “BlackBerry Flow.” With BlackBerry Flow, users will be able to maximize the multitasking capabilities of the BB10’s new hardware and software. In fact, the BB10 will be the first smartphone to thread together applications—something the company needed in order to compete with heavyweight operating systems, Android and iOS.

In addition to BlackBerry Flow, RIM plans to provide BlackBerry users with an easy way to tap their contacts' public profiles-- including blog posts, tweets, emails and other details. By streamlining the phone’s features, the company is attempting to set Blackberry apart from other smartphones on the consumer and enterprise market. However, users will have to wait until early next year to find out whether the BB10 devices will be a success or not.

Tell us, will you consider buying the new BlackBerry 10?

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Four Essential Summer Olympics Smartphone Apps

Who could forget Michael Phelps’ famous seventh gold medal win in the 100-meter butterfly final in Beijing? Phelps won by the thinnest of margins, 0.01 of a second, which was incredible to watch! With narrow victories and nail-biting events, just like Phelps’, this year’s Olympic Games are sure to be one of the most exciting ones yet. In anticipation of the games, we’ve gathered a few smartphone apps that will make watching the games even more exciting. As the Olympics progress, let us know which one is your favorite!
  1. BBC Olympics app: While NBC is the official network carrying the Olympics for Americans, BBC is Britain’s main news network reporting on the games. Their free app, which is available on iPhone, Blackberry and Android devices, provides users a text-based rundown of the current events and scores. Live updates and commentary from BBC reporters and Olympians are also included in the app. Users can find a breakdown of the number of medals won by each country. Plus, the app is location-based! So, if you’re checking it from the U.S. it will include more news and updates about the U.S. team.
  2. NBC 2012 Summer Olympics app: With free, live streaming of the games from NBC’s Olympic app, you won’t miss anything! Whether you’re operating from an iPhone or an iPad, the app is very video-focused. Users can tap into NBC’s social media profiles to see updates and interviews with athletes as well as scheduled events. However, we noted that the app isn’t 100-percent free. To watch all of the videos users must verify their cable and/or satellite subscription. Perhaps the coolest element of the app is the push notifications, where users can receive updates about their favorite sports or athletes. 
  3. Curly’s Pocket Guide to Sports: Available on iOS devices, this app has information about each sport and its associated rules. If you’re planning to watch a sport you don’t know a lot about—aka archery—this app lays out the guidelines and rules in a witty way and even adds in some interesting trivia! 
  4. The 2012 Team USA app: The official app released by the U.S. Olympic Committee offers several of the same features as the three previous apps. Just like NBC, they ask that you verify your cable and/or satellite subscription before you can watch videos. One of the most fun elements of this app is the “cheer” button, which lets users send a personal message to athletes on Facebook and Twitter. Users can also purchase Team USA gear and even donate to help support the team, from within the app. Some have noted that the news tab loads slowly. 
Whether it’s from your phone or television, we hope you enjoy all of your favorite sports! Let us not forget to send a big hip-hip-hooray to Team USA!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Keeping Kids Safe this Summer with Smartphone Apps

Summer is only a few weeks away, and while kids are ready to spend long days playing outside with their friends, parents are trying to arrange activities to keep them busy and safe.  Between scheduling summer camps and play dates, parents can ensure their child is safe throughout summer by taking the time to install smartphone applications to their child’s phone. From helpful location-tracking applications to caller ID, a smartphone can keep kids in touch with parents and out of trouble. Just in time for summer, we have the latest tips for parents to keep their kids safe this summer.

1.      GPS Tracking: Parents can keep an eye on adventurous children by installing GPS tracking applications on their child’s smartphone. Kids can travel safely around town without worrying about an overprotective parent accompanying them to every activity while on-the-go parents can remain focused at work or at home without second guessing their child’s location.
2.       Weather Applications: Summertime brings warm temperatures, unexpected thunderstorms and high exposure to the sun. Kids who aren’t prepared for excessive sun exposure or occasional storms can be caught in situations that compromise their health. Installing a weather application on your child’s phone can help them stay on top of the weather in your area. Plus, push-notifications allow kids to know if a storm is moving their way without ever checking the application.
3.       Privacy Applications: Whether they are wandering the mall with friends or hanging out at the local park, kids will exchange phone numbers with plenty of people this summer. Sometimes new acquaintances lead to great friendships, other times they lead to inappropriate text messages or random callers. Parents can install an entire line of caller ID applications that monitor who is calling or texting their child. If a child is of driving age, Text ID and Voice Cue applications announce the name of the person trying to contact them. Either way, parents can rest assured that their child is safe with privacy applications installed on their phone.

 To maximize summer fun for kids, remember to apply lots of sunscreen, wear a hat and eat lots of popsicles! 

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Missed Call, Missed Opportunity

Everyday, smartphone owners receive hundreds of text messages and phone calls, some from people in their contact list and some from people whose numbers aren't yet in their phone. For Lauren, Jason and Coach Ted a missed call and/or text message turned into a missed opportunity. Find out what happened to each individual in our latest video series. Tell us, which one is your favorite?

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Three Must-have Fitness Apps

With warmer weather and long days at the pool just around the corner, it’s time to get bikini-body ready. But when fitness advice seems to be all over the Web, it can difficult to know exactly where to begin your workout regimen. Since we know you always have your smartphone on you, we’re making it simple and sharing three of our favorite fitness applications. If you’re consistent and use the social settings to share your workouts with your friends, you will be ready for the pool in no time!
  • Nike Training Club: This is one of our favorite applications because it’s practically a personal trainer. Users select which goal they want to achieve: lean, toned, strong or focused. With each goal, users can then select a level: beginner, intermediate or advanced. The app breaks down each workout move by its name, how many reps or the length of time you need to do the move. It’s easy to use and free! We highly recommend for users who have access to an iPhone or iTouch. Nike hasn’t created an application for Android owners, yet.
  • MyFitnessPal: This app is gaining more popularity among smartphone users. It’s a food diary that calculates how many calories a user needs to consume in order to lose or gain weight. It breaks down how many calories you’re allotted for that day based on the information you enter. If you have trouble remembering exactly what you ate for breakfast, lunch and dinner you can enter it online or on your smartphone before or after your eat. In addition to the food diary, users can enter the amount of time spent doing cardio or strength training. The app also has an optional social setting so users can share their diet with friends. MyFitnessPal is available for iOS and Android operating systems.
  •  MapMyFitness: One of the coolest applications on the market for outdoor lovers is MapMyFitness. Whether you like to bike, walk or run, this app loads nearby trails, tracks your time, updates you on your overall progress and keeps your pace. Plus, users can share their location with friends! If you’ve been dying to spend time in the sun and enjoy local trails, this is the app for you!
We hope that you enjoy these apps as much as we do. Leave us a comment about your favorite fitness app and remember to have a happy summer!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Pinning our Interests

We’re excited to announce we’ve joined Pinterest! If you haven’t visited the latest social media site, you’re missing out on some great recipes, fun apps, cute clothes, home goods things. Here’s a peek at what we’re pinning. 
  • Phones: You’ll find fun phones, infographics, funny quotes and the latest gear for your smartphone on this board. Right now, we’re loving the Dr. Dre’s Beats pin.
  • Safety Tips: Safety is one our top concerns, and we’re proving it with our “Safety Tips” board. Stop by and you’ll see tips on everything from traveling with your smartphone to keeping kids safe in the cyber world.      
  • App Hotspot: We’re sharing the coolest apps with our fans. Duh. In fact, we’ve got the newest apps for fitness-gurus, kids and busy businessmen and women. Have an app you love? Pin it and tag us [at]privusmobile!
  • Vintage: We’ve all seen Grandma’s old dial phone—there’s something about the spin dial that makes us want to call new friends all day! Anyway, we’re always looking for items of nostalgia, so send us some ideas.     
  • Tech Tips: Wet smartphone? Dirty smartphone? Data-demanding smartphone? Our “Tech Tips” board has all insider information from the experts on how to keep your iPhone or Android phone as clean and well-kept as the day you bought it. 

 Can’t wait to pin with you!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Going on vacation with your smartphone: five tips every traveler needs to know

Traveling across the country can be an exciting and time consuming task, especially if you’re unsure what to pack, but there’s no need to worry. From cool camera applications to helpful budget applications, we have five tips will make sure you’re not stuck on the wrong side of town when you could be dining with locals, hitting the secret hot spots and staying within your budget! 

  1. Itinerary: Travelers who are flying should always have their itinerary downloaded on their phone. Most airlines also have smartphone applications that allow travelers to check in to their flight, monitor arrival and departure times and watch for cancellations. 
  2. Budget: Traveling expenses can add up quickly, so it’s important to keep track of your vacation budget. There are multiple applications on the market that can keep travelers on budget, including Money Book, Mint or EasyMoney. All three allow travelers to allocate funds based on categories like food, clothing, activities and gas.
  3. Battery Power: From car chargers to adapters, smartphones need access to power, especially when being heavily used! Having a full battery will keep travelers on route, on time and on top of plans. 
  4. Directions: Whether it’s directions to the hotel or local restaurants, smartphones can provide driving directions, reviews, suggestions and check-in opportunities. Travelers who want to take advantage of public transportation can download BusTime or Go To There. Many cities also have specific applications that update the location of buses, metros and subways in real time.
  5. Memory Making: Pictures capture memories of a vacation long after it’s over, so take plenty! If you’re feeling creative, try applications like Instagram or PicFrame. Want to share a photo with a co-worker or family member? Both applications have social capabilities so snap away.
We hope these travel tips turn your vacation planning from stressful to restful. If you have another smartphone application that’s been especially beneficial, drop us a note! We’d love to hear your travel tips! Happy vacationing!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Four Tips to Save Your Wet Smartphone

Whether you’ve dropped your phone in the tub, toilet or swimming pool, you know the frustration that accompanies losing your smartphone. In fact, an online study showed that one in five people have dropped their phone in the toilet. 

Because this is such a common scenario we’re sharing several tips and tricks that can help save your smartphone if dropped in water.*
  1. First, get in there and get it out! Whether it’s a pool or a washing machine, you have to retrieve the device. Once you do, immediately remove the battery and SIM card. Do not turn the device on. This can cause short circuits that are irreversible. Be sure to dry the battery off as quickly as possible.
  2. With a soft towel or cloth (not paper towels because particles of the paper may stick inside your phone) gently wipe the water off of the keypad, screen and battery area.  Be sure to avoid the hairdryer. Heating your phone can be just as harmful as dropping it in water. Some recommend putting the phone near a dehumidifier or on top of a cable box. Both will draw out the water.
  3. Grab a big bowl and fill it with white or brown rice. We strongly discourage using rice with flavoring or seasoning because it could get stuck in your phone.  Stick your phone face down in the rice for at least 48 hours; the rice will absorb the water. After 48 hours take it out of the rice and turn it on. If the device does not turn on, return it to the rice for another 24 hours. Continue until you pull your hair out until you feel that your phone has had enough. 
  4. Try using a compressed air can like the ones sold at computer stores. Hold the can straight up and down when spraying your phone. Holding it sideways, upside down or at an angle will discharge a freezing liquid damaging your phone further. Spray the air into speaker, microphone, keypad and hard-to-reach crevices.

Your phone may look like this now, but...
Throw it in some rice and you could end the week looking like...

If these tricks don’t work you have several options. One, you can wait it out, there have been occasions where smartphones come back to life two weeks after taking the plunge, try leaving your phone in rice for a few days. Also, check with the store where you purchased the phone. They can sometimes judge whether a not a smartphone is kaput or not. You might just need a new battery. Two, purchase a new one. Check to see if you’re eligible for an upgrade. If not, try purchasing a refurbished phone. They’ve already been pre-approved by the carrier and have limited wear and tear.

Finally, living without a smartphone isn’t fun or easy, we know, but patience is the key in this situation.  Remember, it’s important to take the time to repair your phone because there is no easy fix for water-damaged phones. To hold you over, consider pulling out an old phone and using it until your smartphone is up and running again. Carriers can usually set up one of your old phones on a temporary basis. 

Have a trick that saved your smartphone? Please share with us!

*Disclaimer: We can’t guarantee these tips will save your phone because some water damage is irreversible. 

Monday, April 2, 2012

Dr. Gordblower’s Museum of Privacy

As soon as Mark Zuckerburg announced that Facebook Timeline for brands would go live on March 30, we pulled out our drawing board and started thinking about how we could have some fun with it! As many of you have suspected, it is privacy as a whole that inspired our new Timeline.

Let’s be honest, privacy is an issue that the public has dealt with for centuries. From outhouses to two-piece swimsuits, it seems the public always has an opinion about how much information should be shared. So, we created a fictitious museum of privacy!

We hope you have as much fun exploring our Timeline as we did creating it. Leave a comment or two on our Facebook page about what privacy issue we should feature next.

May your Timeline live on.

Friday, March 23, 2012

With its game, Swine Flew, Privus Mobile brings fun and flying pigs to iPhone owners

In the mobile gaming world, pigs are one trending topic (see Angry Birds). In fact, gamers can’t seem to get enough of the squealing animal. So what better way to satisfy our fans than to develop a game with flying pigs?! We are so excited to introduce our brand new mobile game, Swine Flew! Because it’s our first game, and we love our readers, we’re giving you an inside look into to the game!

Swine Flew is an addictive game of skill and chance that’s sure to provide you with hours of fun. Featuring flying swine traveling above scenic farmland, players aim to eliminate each pig one by one with the ammunition from one enemy pig. Swine Flew is different from other games because players don’t need to start at level one. In fact, players can start at level 12 and attempt to eliminate as many as 13 pigs. Each level brings a more challenging test of players’ reflexes.

iPhone owners can download Swine Flew from Apple’s App store or iTunes and begin the exciting game in a matter of seconds. We’re offering one free ad-supported application and another without the ads for 99 cents. Both can be downloaded by visiting the App Store on any compatible iOS device.

For more information about our complete line of smartphone applications, visit

Don’t forget to leave a comment or two and let us know what you think about the game!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

March mobile madness: three apps to keep you in the loop

March Madness has officially begun! But unless you’re a college student on Spring Break or work at ESPN you probably don’t get to watch the NCAA tournament games live. Don’t worry, there’s an app for that! In fact, to keep you up to speed with all 67 games—and the office basketball bracket—we have three smartphone apps to get you through the madness.

1. NCAA’s 'March Madness Live' is the king of all March Madness applications! It provides the latest scores, news updates, bracket creators and up-to-the-minute alerts that notify you when a game ends or goes into overtime. Plus, it also has a live chat feature that allows you to post bracket info (and bragging rights) to Facebook and Twitter.

2. ESPN Bracket Bound 2012 is one of the most popular free applications. To keep track of the live bracket just tap "My Bracket" and all of your teams and their scores show up. In addition, news and highlights of games show on the home screen in a slide show. You can also catch details, highlights and players’ statistics on the application.

3. Twitter is a must for sports junkies! With ESPN reporters, bloggers and even players tweeting about the games, it’s the obvious place to catch breaking news. Here are a few we suggest following: sports writers Jeff Goodman @GoodmanCBS and Andy Katz @ESPNAndyKatz tweet scores, highlights and industry insight. North Carolina player Kendall Marshall @KButter5 will provide an inside look from a player’s standpoint, while Sport Illustrated stat man Luke Winn @lukewinn does all the math so you don’t have to! Plus, all of the teams have individual Twitter handles!

Finally, all of the apps are available on both Apple and Android devices. Do you have a favorite sports application? Feel free to share your thoughts (and game predictions) by leaving us a comment or two!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

2012: The Year of Mobile Commerce

Forget the dragon; 2012 is the year of mobile commerce!

You may be asking how we know this. For one, mobile applications are quickly growing to become a life force for almost every independent country in the world. This change is enhancing consumers’ capabilities to shop remotely.

In fact, application developers witnessed the rapid growth of shopping apps in 2011. Industry analysts are estimating that the U.S. market could experience more than $200 billion in mobile commerce purchases this year alone.

So, what do this means for you?

Increased mobile security. The security of online stores, and especially mobile security, will likely become more of a focal point in 2012 – both for mobile stores and payment firms that will have to address issues with exposed personal information and financial records. Unfortunately, in exchange for instant access to products, discounts and express service, consumers give up information to stores, and sometimes thieves.

Integration between applications. As smartphone users continue to make purchases from the palm of their hand, application developers are increasing the avenues of monetization already in place. For example, Facebook launched its app so users could access their profiles while on-the-go; however, as the market evolved, developers created Facebook “gifts.” This simple, digital product led to Facebook’s development of an online currency that could be used for an even wider line of digital features and products. Smartphone owners will continue to see more types of non-traditional commerce.

More mainstream sites going mobile. Two mobile applications that caught consumers’ eyes in 2011 include Amazon and eBay. When compared to similar applications, Amazon’s price-check app received one of the highest user satisfaction ratings. eBay’s PayPal also saw a record number of purchases made from its mobile application. More retail sites are developing mobile applications and launching mobile versions of their online stores.

These apps’ growth is not surprising for a world that is online and connected 24/7 by mobile technology. Smartphone owners have proven their willingness to make purchases from their phones and developers will continue creating apps that capitalize on this. These factors combine and create a mobile market that has potential to earn billions of additional dollars in 2012.