Is RIM forcing buggy BlackBerries on carriers?

BlackBerry glitchAn exclusive report from BGR says that RIM is issuing defective BlackBerry handsets to carriers. A “trusted source” reveals that the manufacturer has been able to twist a few arms and convince several carrier companies to approve and sell phones that don’t meet Technical Acceptance standards. Normally, manufacturers test their mobile firmware followed by a carriers’ own round of review. Then the carriers decide whether to approve or reject the OS software.

RIM is taking matters into its own hands by “putting an enormous amount of pressure on carriers” to let the next few BlackBerry handsets fly through the testing phase without a thorough up-and-down. Devices including the BlackBerry Bold 9900 (which is already been delayed until late August or early September) are supposedly being accepted despite any software glitches, and it’s being reported that RIM’s own engineers will be forcefully pushing unfinished OS builds onto carriers. Apparently this shouldn’t be such a huge shock because it’s somewhat standard practice for RIM: The brand’s penchant for handing over half-baked product could be behind BlackBerry’s notorious buggy software and random rebooting.

It was recently reported that RIM would miss upcoming product launch deadlines, and also be pushing back the release of any smartphones running its QNX operating system until the second half of 2012. The company is under considerable pressure, and while it seems outrageous and anti-consumer to think such a legacy manufacturer would put insufficient products on shelves, its declining market share, shaken investor confidence, and underwhelming performance this year could be behind these tactics.

While BGR reports it’s buggy phone OS builds that RIM’s been peddling, some of the problems plaguing the PlayBook also raise a few eyebrows. 1,000 faulty BlackBerry PlayBooks had to be recalled last month, and in April Verizon was wary of selling the tablet. Carrier distrust doesn’t necessarily mean a product is buggy, but given the current rumors surrounding RIM, it doesn’t inspire confidence.

Business

Chinese court upholds Qualcomm's complaint that Apple infringed on two patents

Apple is following the FTC's lead and has sued Qualcomm for a massive $1 billion in the U.S., $145 million in China, and also in the U.K., claiming the company charged onerous royalties for its patented tech.
Mobile

5G’s arrival is transforming tech. Here’s everything you need to know to keep up

It has been years in the making, but 5G is finally becoming a reality. While 5G coverage is still extremely limited, expect to see it expand in 2019. Not sure what 5G even is? Here's everything you need to know.
Mobile

The Galaxy S10 may be announced before MWC, sell for up to $1,750

While we still may be months away from an announcement, there's no doubt about it: Samsung is working hard on its successor to the Galaxy S9. Here's everything we know about the upcoming Samsung Galaxy S10.
Wearables

These are the best smartwatches for everything from fashion to fitness

Tempted to buy a smartwatch? If so, then the growing number of great models available means you've got plenty to choose from. But which one should you pick? Here is our list of the best smartwatches.
Mobile

Apple is spending $1 billion to hire up to 15,000 new employees in Austin

Apple has announced a series of expansions across the U.S. -- including a massive expansion to the company's Austin campus that will see it spending $1 billion to accommodate for up to 15,000 new employees.
Outdoors

Google Maps makes it easier than ever to find a Lime bike or scooter

Google Maps has added a new feature that helps you find a Lime bike or scooter in just a few taps. The feature currently works in 11 U.S. cities served by Lime, with more coming next year.
Mobile

Leave the laptop at home, the iPad Pro is the travel buddy to take on vacay

The iPad Pro is a powerful tablet that's perfect for creatives and professionals. How does it fare when traveling with it as a laptop replacement? We took it on a two week trek in Japan to find out.
Mobile

Quirky smartphone accessories you never knew you needed

Looking for a few accoutrements to make your smartphone even better? If you, or someone you know, is a sucker for accessories, you'll want to check out our collection of quirky smartphone accessories you never knew you needed.
Mobile

Ditch your smartphone for a year and win $100k from Vitaminwater

Vitaminwater is willing to part with $100,000 if you're willing to part with your smartphone partner for a year. Could you last for a year armed with only a 1996-era phone? Here's your chance to find out.
Music

Here's our head-to-head comparison of Pandora and Spotify

Which music streaming platform is best for you? We pit Spotify versus Pandora, two mighty streaming services with on-demand music and massive catalogs, comparing every facet of the two services to help you decide which is best.
Deals

Walmart drops prices on Apple Watches and other fitness trackers

Smartwatches, fitness trackers, and wearable heart rate monitors from Apple, Samsung, Fitbit, and Garmin are popular gifts. Wearables are smarter and more capable than in earlier years. We found the best wearables deals on Walmart.
Wearables

The best Wear OS watches

There are a ton of different Wear OS watches out there, but which one's right for you? No matter what you're looking for from a smartwatch, here are the best Wear OS watches out there.
Emerging Tech

Capture app saves money by 3D scanning objects using iPhone’s TrueDepth camera

Capture is a new iPhone app created by the Y Combinator-backed startup Standard Cyborg. It allows anyone to perform 3D scans of objects and share them with buddies. Here's how it works.
Home Theater

How to master your equalizer settings for the perfect sound

You may know what an EQ is, but do you know how to adjust equalizer settings for the best possible sound? We go through the basics of the modern EQ and lay out some guidelines for how to achieve tip-top sound from your system.