RIM today announced the official rollout of the BlackBerry 7.1 OS. According to the Inside BlackBerry blog post, this OS “has been built to make discovering new things – and sharing those discoveries with friends, family, and colleagues – easier than ever before”. Here are the new features and app updates in OS 7.1:
- Mobile Hotspot: Turn your BlackBerry 7.1 OS device into a Wi-Fi® router anywhere, anytime! The new OS seamlessly provides Internet access for up to five Wi-Fi devices, including laptops and tablets.
- Universal Search: For this new release, we wanted to focus on the intelligence of our system and our apps – in other words, we wanted to create an intuitive experience that does the thinking for you. For example, Universal Search now has a new auto-suggest feature that that intelligently filters Bing® search results to offer you a variety of relevant Web sites based on your search terms.
- BlackBerry® Tag: Share contacts, media and files, and even invite friends to BlackBerry® Messenger (BBM) through a simple touch. BlackBerry Tag unlocks near field communication (NFC) capabilities for everyday use and makes sharing a lot faster and much more personal.
- Wi-Fi® Calling (where available): With BlackBerry 7.1 OS, you’ll be able to make Wi-Fi calls using your carrier’s Wi-Fi calling service (aka UMA-lite or GAN-lite). Wi-Fi calling allows you to save your talk time minutes and make phone calls over any Wi-Fi network. Not all carriers offer such a service so check with your carrier for availability.
- FM Radio: The BlackBerry 7.1 OS update will let BlackBerry® Curve™ 9360 and 9380 smartphone customers enjoy FM radio. The Curve models include a built-in FM radio so you can tune in to local FM radio stations. Simply plug in your headset to boost the reception (it acts as the antenna). Plus, no data usage or data plan required!
- BlackBerry® Maps: When you launch the new BlackBerry Maps you’ll be able to discover special offers, coupons and discounts from nearby vendors – and, of course, you can act instantly by calling about the deal, finding the best route to get there, or grabbing the coupon code.
Along with these app updates RIM is also updating BBM to version 6.1 which includes BlackBerry Tag integration, along with updates to BlackBerry Travel and BlackBerry Traffic. The rollout for this update begins today and continues over the next few weeks. For full details on what’s available in BlackBerry 7.1 check out RIM’s blog post here and feel free to let us know when it’s available for you in the comments or in the forums!
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