RIM reveals music, video partners ahead of BlackBerry 10 premiere
With its updated BlackBerry 10 operating system slated to launch Jan. 30, Research In Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM) unveiled the list of multimedia partners who will supply music, film and television content for its overhauled BlackBerry World storefront.
In addition to mobile applications and games, BlackBerry World (formerly BlackBerry App World) will now feature premium video downloads and rentals from Hollywood studios and independents including 20th Century Fox, Lionsgate, MGM, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, Walt Disney Studios and Warner Bros. Consumers will also enjoy access to television programming from the likes of ABC Studios, BBC Worldwide, CBC/Radio-Canada, CBS, NBCUniversal and Univision Communications. RIM said most feature films will reach BlackBerry World the same day they are released on home video, with many current TV series touting next-day availability. At launch, video content will be limited to the U.S., U.K. and Canadian markets.
BlackBerry World also will feature DRM-free music downloads from major labels Sony Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group and Warner Music Group as well as indies like Matador, 4AD, Domino and Rough Trade. Downloads will initially be available in 18 countries, including the U.S., U.K. and Canada, as well as selected markets in Western Europe, Latin America and the Asia-Pacific region.
RIM will release music and video pricing and payment details when the new content goes on sale in conjunction with its first BlackBerry 10 devices, slated for release next month. The rebranded BlackBerry World went live on the Web last week and is scheduled to roll out to BlackBerry smartphones and PlayBook tablets over the coming days.
BlackBerry 10 runs on the same QNX-based software powering the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet. Features include the new BlackBerry Flow UI, which includes BlackBerry Hub, as well as BlackBerry Balance, which separates personal applications and information from encrypted work profiles, enabling organizations to protect their data while giving users the flexibility to optimize their devices for personal use.
RIM is betting on BlackBerry 10 to reignite consumer enthusiasm for its platform. BlackBerry devices accounted for just 1.1 percent of all smartphones sold in the U.S. during the 12 weeks ending Dec. 23, 2012, according to Kantar Worldpanel ComTech data published last week.
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