updated 01:10 pm EDT, Fri May 8, 2009
Upcoming BlackBerry gear
At least two new BlackBerry accessories are well into development, according to RIM accessories VP Antoine Boucher. The first is a new Bluetooth headset, so far codenamed the Alpha 1, which uses an over-the-ear loop combined with a molded in-ear bud. The unit is said to be larger than the BlueAnt Q1 but smaller than the Jawbone Prime, and equipped with noise cancellation as well as a micro USB charging port, now standard on RIM hardware. The device is however limited to mono output, as well as simple on/off and dial/hangup controls. Text-to-speech and speech-to-text functions may be supported in the future.
Boucher has also revealed more details on the Bluetooth visor mount, meant for driving. The device should additionally include an FM transmitter to broadcast to car stereos, and a release date has now been pegged for June or July.
It is meanwhile hinted that the company is looking to produce or support Bluetooth watches, which would enable BlackBerries to provide notices of incoming messages without having to take a phone out of a pocket. Notifications could be attached to several different forms of messaging, including e-mail, texts, instant messaging, Twitter and Facebook. RIM may also be investigating the possibility of a TV out-enabled Remote Stereo Gateway, which would exploit the storage and video capabilities of modern BlackBerries.