All Facebook users who also carry a BlackBerry must rejoice and should try out version 188.8.131.52 that is out now and is available to download. Simply go to the existing Facebook application and select to upgrade. If you don’t have the app on your BlackBerry phone already, you can download it from here. I have been using the Facebook app on my BlackBerry for a while now but it always lacked many features and the wap site m.facebook.com was always better. I’ve also been trying some third party tools like shozu and snaptu for Facebook access but none of them have been as simple, comprehensive and convenient as the wap site. This time, the development team has done the job very well and has given a feature boost to the application and now I don’t use the wap site anymore.
The new features include:
A new and improved home screen that shows status updates.
You can comment on these statuses
A new “View Highlights” screen that shows photos posted by users, status updates, wall posts, photo comments, relationship status changes, phone number changes and a bundle of other updates.
Capability of commenting from the above mentioned “View Highlights” screen.
An improved Notification page
Photo gallery — View Highlights
An improved Friend’s list that allows, not only to poke and message friends, but lets you call them, view their profile.
The user profile screen that lets you view updates from a friend and yes, my favorite, browse and view the albums and photos
An amazing album and photo gallery? Watching photos from Facebook friends’ albums is a charm on this app. Did I mention that already?
Photo gallery allows you to browse and scroll through the photos, zoom into the photos and set photos as the BB home screen.
View Profile —– Upload and Tag Photos
All existing features including poke, message, write on wall, invite friends, tag and upload photos etc are also there and are complemented by the new features and they complement the new features too.
The app also allows you to sync your Facebook and Blackberry contacts. You can connect Facebook profiles with existin entries on your Blackberry contacts, you can request phone numbers of Facebook friends and you can also search for people in your Blakcberry contacts on Facebook and add them up.
Following wizard came up on my web-based Facebook when I logged in just after installing the new Facebook app on my Blackberry.
You can watch the usage video posted below to get an idea of the new feature’s working.
Note, I carry a non-wifi Blackberry, so the application looks a bit slow in the video.
Summary Overall, the application is a hit. I don’t find many drawbacks in the app.
View albums: Its smooth, shows album name, preview photo and number of photos in it. Nice side-wise scrolling transitions.
View photos: Amazing full screen photo viewing with photo title/info and swapping between photos in an album is a charm. Side wise scrolling thumbnails make it look so good.
View profiles: A new feature with great options like view photos, poke, message and profile activity of the user.
Great contact sync: Allows you to sync your Facebook contacts with Blackberry contacts and vise-versa.
Request phone number: You can request a Facebook user’s phone number and can sync it with the phone so that you can use it for calling. I got to talk to a few very old friends just because of this feature.
The earlier Facebook notification system worked great with the Blackberry holster. (Facebook notification rings, you pull out the phone and notification is right on the screen). Things are not that good with this version. Notification system doesn’t work. Doesn’t work at all. But this is a very small glitch and I’m sure things will be fixed in next version.
Facebook experience on Blackberry is still behind Facbook experience on an iPhone.
Microsoft.com is down fellows. I just realized, when I go to Microsoft.com, it takes me to a page showing “Page not available”. Result is the same for microsoft.com and www.microsoft.com. It eventually shows me the error and a following bing search searching for “en us default aspx”. Strange is’nt it? See the screenshot below.
The home page redirects to http://www.microsoft.com/library/errorpages/smarterror.aspx?aspxerrorpath=/en/us/default.aspx
Updates: It was a temporary error and the site is up and running now!
You may have seen this already, but I come across it now. New Opera 10 has a “Face Gestures” feature that allows you to make face gestures at your PC to control common browser commands. You can go to “Home”, go next, back, speed dial and do other stuff with this feature. Obviously you need a PC with a built in camera or an external web-cam for this feature to work. Following is a subset of the supported face gestures.
You can start by viewing this demo video below and can download the browser from this link.
Recently, we have seen companies using sarcasm in hidden or obvious words causing a never ending race of ads showing up on media, especially television. This race has taken the shape of a war when it comes to telecom sector. Every telco is hitting others with the gestures, sentences, music, colors or whatever method they find appropriate. The team at Ufone has been doing its part as well but this ad, which is yet to be aired has taken it to another level.
At times I feel it is a little inappropriate but once it’s a war, all is fair in it. Please do post your comments.
Home brewers are hard at work to make classic games on the newly launched Palm pre’s WebOS. A few success stories have been reported, for example, the classic Doom has been ported to Palm. Following videos shows the game on the handset.
If you are a fan of Nintendo games, you can also see Nintendo games running on WebOS too. Is’nt that a good news for game lovers who want to own a Pre? Follow this link to view a tutorial on “How to port Nintendo emulator on WebOS”.
It appears that this porting business is turning out to be much more simpler than expected, especially if you are a Linux user.
Nokia has recently announced its new QWERTY smartphone E-72. The handset is an obvious successor of E-71 with several improvements and performance boosts. A few notable features are A-GPS with Nokia maps, a life time subscription of Walk and a trial of turn by turn navigation, high concentration and convenience on instant messaging services and one touch torch operation by pressing the space bar. The device also uses smart noise cancellation mechanism to make conversations more clear when talking in noisy environments. Navigation has been improved with the addition of a compass and last but not least, an improved version of office is included that supports office 2007 documents as well. According to Nokia, the handset will start shipping in third quarter of 2009, (thats a fortnight away) and will cost around 350 Euro before taxes and subsidies.
I just posted my brand new Facebook URL in my last post. I’m posting again to launch a protest here. When I tried signing up for facebook.com/basit , it said its already taken. To make sure I dont miss the other combinations, I signed up for /basit.ali and go it.
Now when I try facebook.com/basit, nothing shows up, means its not taken. If the name is not taken, why they dint let me take it? I protest Facebook, I portest!!
Facebook has started giving away usernames so that you can have your public profile placed at www.facebook.com/. A few minuts ago when the signing up opened on first come first serve basis, I thought I’ll get “basit” but that was already taken. Now all my friends can access me through http://www.facebook.com/basit.ali 🙂
Nokia life tools have been running as a pilot in Indian state of Maharashtra. Nokia has announced the commercial launch of these tools in Maharashtra today. This service will run in this state for now and will spread further to the other parts of the country later. Life-tools is a combination of entertainment, information, education and agriculture services in the emerging markets.
The idea is to have applications running on common, low cost phones that is owned by the greater number of users in small towns and remote areas and the focus of the applications is to make the life of the users easier one way or another.
Here are a few shots from the agriculture related application. You can have more information about these applications here.
The biggest challenge in such cases is to bring information and updates to the users from the very local market and the changes should reflect the happenings around them, for example market prices, weather, irrigation related details etc.
That is why the service has been launched in a limited area, and will grow over time. Nokia has recently been concentrating on these so-called emerging markets like India and Pakistan where the telecom market has been growing exponentially resulting in very high sales of handsets.