RIM Weekend Round-Up: WhatsApp Follows Kik, NFC Being Disabled On AT&T Bold 9900.

  • August 12, 2011 7:57 pm

Before you crack open that cold one and slide that 37th chicken wing down your throat, take a minute to catch up on the latest RIM/BlackBerry news this Friday evening: WhatsApp being blocked from OS 7 devices and AT&T blocking NFC on the new BlackBerry Bold 9900…

WhatsApp Messenger

WhatsApp is an app (such as Kik) that allow users to quickly and easily communicate across platforms like Android, BlackBerry, iOS and Symbian. Well, they did allow BlackBerry users access to their Android, iOS and Symbian counterparts. Users of new BlackBerry 7 hardware will find WhatsApp messenger missing from BlackBerry App World.

Now, this could very well be (and very likely is) a simple problem with WhatsApp Messenger not being compatible with BlackBerry OS 7, and as such, not being listed for said devices. Though given RIM’s previous encounter with Kik, we’re at least raising an eyebrow or two.

Bold 9900 & NFC

Even more disappointing than no more WhatsApp on BlackBerry, however, are reports claiming AT&T is disabling NFC on the BlackBerry Bold 9900. Now, take this rumor with a grain of salt as TechnoBuffalo is reporting a BBM Apps hackathon attendee has an AT&T 9900 and perfectly working NFC. For the record, European carrier Vodafone is already actively blocking NFC at the software level — not cool.

So, wow. Negative RIM news. Seems to be a lot of it lately. With that said we also feel bad for RIM. What good is spending all of these company resources on exciting new devices only to have carriers like Vodafone (and potentially AT&T) neuter them, and the most important features no less? There is absolutely no reason for Vodafone (or any other carrier for that matter) disable staple features such as NFC. They did it with Bluetooth when Bluetooth file transfers were all the rage, and then did it again with internet tethering. Of course, the damage isn’t too bad just yet considering NFC support in the world at large is rather small. But that will change.

Of course, when there’s a will there’s most certainly a way. In regards to NFC — a simple software update with an OS package other than AT&T’s will get the job done.

Let us reiterate both of these instances sound pretty bad on the surface. But if you step back and take a second it becomes apparent that WhatsApp will likely be back, and the AT&T blocking NFC rumor is likely just that — rumor.

Let’s here you thoughts!

Source: TechnoBuffalo (1), (2)

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