In an online video, BlackBerry-maker RIM reveals some details about the next version of its smartphone operating system, including some new features:
The video is in three parts. The first emphasizes entertainment features, including a redesigned music player and an image viewer with support for the multi-touch gesture pinch-to-zoom.
The second covers more business-like features, including an updated email app capable of showing embedded images and a more graphical calendar. In addition, the next version of the OS will include a summary screen for recent communications, including emails, missed phone calls and upcoming calendar appointments.
The third section offers a quick demonstration of the redesigned home screen, which will allow users to organize software into different pages that slide up from the bottom of the display. The social networking capabilities are also briefly covered, such a tie-ins to Twitter.
A short demo of the re-designed web browser is included in this section. It will be WebKit-compliant, and much more capable than the current one, including support for tabs and pinch-to-zoom.
All sections of the video show off new contextual menus that pop up when the screen is tapped.
Much of the attention appears to be about improvements for touchscreen-based smartphones, though RIM executives have said that non-touchscreen models will see major changes, too.
As early as This Summer
RIM Co-CEO Mike Lazaridis said that BlackBerry OS 6.0 will be released in the third quarter of the year.
He also added that RIM is going to bring system software upgrades to as many current models as possible.
Source: Research in Motion