Category Archives: BlackBerry10

Controlling a phone with gestures

With the iPhone X launching this fall without a home button, many iOS users are going to have to get used to controlling their phones with just gestures. For those of us with a history on BlackBerry 10 we know how this works, and we are here to tell you that it is awesome.

Swipe up to home

Honestly this gesture is perfect. A simple swipe up to get back to the home screen is super intuitive, and as much as I enjoy the fingerprint reader, having to use a button on my iPhone still feels like a step backwards.

Swipe down for control center

Again this is straight out of the BlackBerry 10 interface and it works well. Honestly this isn’t much different than the current iOS approach, but moving to the top to have the more reachable swipe sending you home makes sense.

Lift to wake

This was added in BlackBerry 10.3.1 and while conceptually neat, I actually went and turned this off. Just reaching to place the phone in my pocket the screen would flash on and I found this to be too distracting, so I went without this function.

FaceID

BlackBerry didn’t have this one. Apple seems confident in their technology, and honestly it is going to make or break this design. If it can not match the speed of touch id then I probably won’t be getting the iPhone X.

BlackBerry Hub

Apple hasn’t shown off notification on the new phone, so I am going to keep the dream alive. Probably not going to ship with iOS 11. Still I think this is one area where iPhone will remain behind BlackBerry’s ease of use.

BlackBerry 10 OS distribution

The distribution of BlackBerry 10 OS versions continues to be unchanged this summer with roughly half of all users running OS 10.3.3 and over 90% of users on at least some variant of 10.3.X.

This data was collected by BlackBerry World for downloads of the free strategy game Pixelated and the free checklist app Stuff I Need. Data shown on the chart is from the beginning of July 2016 through the end of July 2017.

BlackBerry 10 OS distribution

The distribution of BlackBerry 10 OS versions is just as boring as you would expect it to be for an abandoned operating system. Almost all users are on some variant of OS 10.3.X with roughly half running the newest point release.

This data was collected by BlackBerry World for downloads of the free strategy game Pixelated and the free checklist app Stuff I Need. Data shown on the chart is from the beginning of May 2016 through the end of May 2017.

Pixelated released for iPhone

After eight years of requests, Pixelated Plus is finally available for the iPhone. This new version of the game has all the same features as the BlackBerry and Windows releases of Pixelated. A one time in-app purchase can be used to unlock all statistics and features and grid sizes in the game.

The BlackBerry 10 version of Pixelated Plus has also been updated to add make showing the number of remaining moves in a game to be optional.

About Pixelated

Pixelated is an addictive puzzle based strategy game that requires a mixture of skill and luck in order to accomplish. The object of the game is to change the colour of the squares until the entire screen is a single solid colour. Starting with the square in the upper left corner you can change the colour of the blocks in order to match that of the surrounding squares. This is done repeatedly until the entire screen is a single colour. The object of the game is to clear the screen in as few moves as possible. Under the default settings you must do so in under 22 moves in order to win. The game is controlled by the large colored blocks at the bottom of the screen.

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Use of 10.3.3 approaches 50% of BlackBerry 10 users

The launch of BlackBerry 10.3.3 remains slow, but has finally reached half of the users running BlackBerry 10 phones. Use of BlackBerry’s newest (and final) OS has reached 52.8% of Pixelated users, and 48.5% of users of the Stuff I Need app.


This data was collected by BlackBerry World for downloads of the free strategy game Pixelated and the free checklist app Stuff I Need. Data shown on the chart is from the beginning of April 2016 through the end of April 2017.

Update to BlackBerry 10 game Head Words

ShapeItAppThe BlackBerry 10 game Head Words has been updated to version 1.4 in BlackBerry App World. This update expands the number of items in the game’s existing categories. This is partially to account for new movies and tv shows that have been released since the last update, and partially to simply add more depth to the other categories.

About Head Words

Head Words is a native multi-player guessing game where after selecting a category, one player places the phone on their forehead while the other players give clues. With one minute to guess as many words as possible, the player can tilt the phone down for each correct answer, or tilt the phone up to pass. At the end of round a word list will show what was guessed right and wrong. The swipe down menu provides an option to turn the sound on or off.

The game includes five categories for free, and the option to purchase access to ten additional categories for a dollar each.

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BlackBerry 10.3.3 roll out remains slow

Adoption of the final version of BlackBerry OS remains slow, with most users still using the older 10.3.2 version. In March the use of 10.3.3 was well below half, reaching only 41.7% of Stuff I Need users, and 22.7% of Pixelated users.


This data was collected by BlackBerry World for downloads of the free strategy game Pixelated and the free checklist app Stuff I Need. Data shown on the chart is from the beginning of March 2016 through the end of March 2017.

One month in, the BlackBerry 10.3.3 rollout has stalled

Last month saw the launch of BlackBerry 10.3.3 which resulted in the BlackBerry 10 OS distribution in changing for the first time in a year. One month later, there is once again no change from the previous month as the rollout of the final version of the OS appears to have already stalled.

January once again saw the vast majority of users running the older 10.3.2 OS. So far less than a third of all users have moved to 10.3.3, and given the lack of carrier interest it is questionable if they ever will.

This data was collected by BlackBerry World for downloads of the free strategy game Pixelated and the free checklist app Stuff I Need. Data shown on the chart is from the beginning of January 2016 through the end of January 2017.

December saw the start of the BlackBerry 10.3.3 rollout

After almost a full year of no significant change, December saw a shake up of BlackBerry 10 users, as OS 10.3.3 began its slow rollout.

The Stuff I Need app saw 29.6% of downloads come from users running OS 10.3.3, while for the game Pixelated this was at 15.8% of users.


This data was collected by BlackBerry World for downloads of the free strategy game Pixelated and the free checklist app Stuff I Need. Data shown on the chart is from the beginning of December 2015 through the end of December 2016.

Weather Beautiful App Updated

The Weather Beautiful App has been updated to version 2.4 for Android, iOS, and BlackBerry 10. This version is quicker to refresh the weather and location when the app is relaunched. Additionally there was a bit of optimization done to the app to make the underlying code quicker and simpler.

About Weather Beautiful

Weather Beautiful is a simple weather app that displays stunning photography of your surrounding area. In addition to the current temperature and weather conditions, the app also allows you to scroll for a full weekly forecast. While temperatures are shown in Fahrenheit by default, there is an option to switch to Celsius.

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BlackBerry 10 distribution the same as ever

The distribution of BlackBerry 10 OS versions has been mostly unchanged for over a year now, and November was no different. Furthermore for these waiting for the much delayed 10.3.3 there is no sign that it is starting to get rolled out. The number of 10.3.3 users in November was the same single digit number as it was all the back in June. BlackBerry 10 is appearing as static as you would expect an abandoned OS to be.

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This data was collected by BlackBerry World for downloads of the free strategy game Pixelated and the free checklist app Stuff I Need. Data shown on the chart is from the beginning of November 2015 through the end of November 2016.

Projectile Physics app updated

shapeitappThe Projectile Physics app has been updated for iOS, Android, BlackBerry, and Windows Phone. After this update the app now uses the official ISO value for acceleration due to gravity. Additionally iOS and Android users are now given the option to remove all advertising from the calculator with an in-app purchase.

About Projectile Physics

This app is a projectile physics calculator designed to solve for all of the components of a typical projectile motion problem. The app solves for both the vertical and horizontal components of the distance traveled, the constant acceleration, the initial and final velocity, as well as the time. These factors are solved for in real time in order to help you get back the factors of the equation quicker.

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More levels for Starbeams

phoneStarbeams has been updated to version 2.3 with 10 new levels added. This brings the total number of levels in the game up to 230.

About Starbeams

The object of the game is to assign colors to each star in order to ensure that none of the stars are connected to another star of the same color. The game starts off easy, but quickly gets more complex, adding more colors and seven pointed stars that can not be changed.

Starbeams can be downloaded for free for Windows Phone, Windows 8, Windows 10, and BlackBerry 10 devices. A one time in-app purchase is required in order to play past level 25.

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Xploding Boxes expanded with another 10 levels

z10Version 5.8 of Xploding Boxes has been released, bringing the total number of levels in the game up to 540. This newest version of the game is available in Google Play, the Amazon App Store, BlackBerry AppWorld, Windows 10/Windows Phone App Store.

Starting with this release, the minimum supported OS version for Android has been increased to 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich).

About Xploding Boxes

Xploding Boxes is a strategy game where the goal is to start a chain reaction that will explode all of the boxes on the screen. Each level presents a different look and number of touches, requiring a different strategy to solve.

The game itself, and the first 25 levels are available for free, while a one time in-app purchase can be used to access the rest of the levels for just $2.99 while still maintaining your progress from the free levels.

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BlackBerry 10 OS distribution steady for almost a year

There has been little to no change in the distribution of OS versions used on BlackBerry 10 phones for the past year. Of course a large part of this is that BlackBerry abandoned their OS a bit over a year ago, but with every device eligible to run the newest version of the OS there are still roughly 10% of users on some variation of OS 10.2.

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This data was collected by BlackBerry World for downloads of the free strategy game Pixelated and the free checklist app Stuff I Need. Data shown on the chart is from the beginning of October 2015 through the end of October 2016.