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BlackBerry Starts Rollout Today of Software Upgrades

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BlackBerry has released a new OS upgrade for BlackBerry 10 smartphone users, taking them up to version 10.2.1.

The company said that the new software update "includes hundreds of new enhancements and refinements".

Subject to mobile network approvals, BlackBerry 10 OS version 10.2.1 will be available to customers around the world, rolling out starting today in the USA, Europe, Canada, the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific and Latin America, and will be available for the entire line of smartphones running BlackBerry 10.

In summary -- the main changes are below:

Customize Pinch Gesture to Filter BlackBerry Hub - BlackBerry Hub lets users access all Usersr messages and notifications in one place. A new feature lets users instantly filter the message list in the Hub. Users can customize the Hub to show only Unread Messages, Flagged Messages, Draft Messages, Meeting Invites, Sent Messages or Level 1 Alerts. Once the filter criterion is set, users can simply activate it with a pinch gesture on the Hub's message list.

Simplified Phone Experience - The phone includes a new incoming call screen that lets users swipe to the left to answer or swipe right to ignore a call. New intuitive icons allow users to instantly silence the call, or send a Reply Now response through BBM, SMS or email that users can't answer the phone right away. Users can choose from a list of standard automated responses or respond with a personalized note.

SMS and Email Groups - Users can now create SMS and email groups for more efficient broadcast communications.

Actionable Lock Screen Notifications - Users can now "Tap to open" a message that appears on the lock screen, letting users respond to an important message much quicker or to check messages more discreetly.

Picture Password for Quick Unlocking - Users can unlock their phone using a combination of a picture and a number (0-9) of user's choice, which they place at a particular point on the image. When users try to unlock the phone, the picture will appear along with a grid of random numbers. To unlock, simply drag the grid so the number users selected overlays the particular point on the image.

Customizable Quick Settings Menu - Users can now customize what appears on the Settings menu, which includes features such as being able to quickly change the Brightness of the smartphone's display, toggle various network connections, and access the built-in flashlight. The Settings menu also includes a toggle that lets users instantly switch between their Personal and Work perimeter.

Offline Browser Reading Mode - Users can now save the current web page they're on for later viewing, even if they are offline or without an Internet connection.

Preferred Contact Sync - Users can now choose the sync source for their Contacts ensuring they always have the most up-to-date contact details. When adding a new contact users can designate which sources they want the contact info to sync with, such as the corporate address book, Gmail, Hotmail, etc.

Device and Battery Monitor - A new and improved device monitor provides users with essential details on battery usage, the impact of installed apps on battery life and memory usage and storage, as well as CPU stats.

Automatic Software Updates - OS updates can be set to happen automatically over a Wi-Fi connection to help ensure they're always benefiting from the latest updates.

Enterprise Features - When combined with BES10 version 10.2, enterprise customers will gain additional security features and IT policies for when more granular controls are required, such as for regulated industries and for organizations that work with sensitive data.

FM Radio - If users have a BlackBerry Z30, BlackBerry Q10 or BlackBerry Q5 smartphone, the new software update unlocks the built-in FM radio in those handsets. Users can listen to local FM stations, which does not require any network connection.

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Tags: blackberry