I'm just back from CTIA, where BlackBerry was one of the major exhibitors.
Seeing so many BlackBerry models in one place, and saying hello to RIM folks, made me think about some features I wish most newer BlackBerrys should offer but don't as of yet.
With an acknowledgement that features are very power-demanding on the battery as well as on device memory, here's my list of 10 features I wish every BlackBerry would offer but don't.
1. Flash compatibility. Currently, BlackBerry's web browser as well as built-in video player on the BlackBerry Curve does not support Flash-encoded videos. Frustrating to be able to watch Flash-enabled YouTube videos on iPhone but not on Blackberry.
2. Video capture. Well, most newer models have image capture. I think offering this would be logical, and would be thrillingly embraced by many BlackBerry enthusiasts.
3. In-device photo editing. I am a "fix it in Photoshop" type of guy, but having in-device brighten, crop, red-eye elimination and a few other basic photo editing capabilities would be great.
4. One-click photo publishing. Very simple. Take picture. Save picture. Generate a menu that might include, "Publish to Flickr." I'd settle for Photobucket or Shutterfly as well.
5. More megapixels. My BlackBerry Curve has 2 megapixels, but see, I saw some models at CTIA that go as high as 5 megapixels. I predict that as 2008 rolls on, 2 megapixels in a phonecam will be seen as "so 2006."
6. Camera in the BlackBerry WorldPhone. The BlackBerry 8800 series have no cameras. Strikes me as counter-intuitive, especially for the BlackBerry 8830 World Phone. Why would a businessperson taking this phone to Paris, or Tokyo not want this feature?
I know I sound hung up on BlackBerry cameras, but not entirely. Here are my other four BlackBerry feature requests:
7. Voice-activated driving directions. Some of who wander are indeed lost. Of course I never get lost when I drive, but if I did, I wouldn't want to pull over to the side of an unfamiliar road and punch up my BlackBerry map or the bundled-in TeleNav map for either illustrated or even voice-delivered driving directions. I want to be able to bring up a BlackBerry app that would ask me: State departure address, state arrival address. Then have the directions read back to me.
8. Enable sub-folders on BlackBerry email. I haven't tried this yet on my Curve, but I'd sort of like to be able to perform pretty much any configuration in my BlackBerry email inbox that I can on my Outlook Express my BlackBerry runs.
9. Enable flawless SSL. Maybe it's just me, but I can't seem to be able to render my bank's secure Web addy on my BlackBerry browser. Doing so is hit and miss on the Opera Mini-Browser I've installed on my Curve. Maybe I am one demanding son of a gun, but I would like my BlackBerry browser to be able to handle any secure code or funky script that's out there.
10. Better SMS. On the BlackBerrys I've owned, SMS doesn't seem to work too well. Works outbound just fine on my Curve, but sometimes incoming messages get lost in space. Some take hours to even wind up in my BB email inbox. I'd rather have them show up in a dedicated SMS window.
Readers, what features would you like to see BlackBerry offer that they don't as of yet?