If you are like me, you have a wide variety of BlackBerry applications installed on your device. Not only is this a drain on the available system resources but it can also become tedious to launch each one let alone remember what apps you have. To combat this confusion, many BlackBerry owners rely on shortcuts to access their most used apps. There are a number of predefined shortcuts which can be used to navigate to certain parts of your Berry and there are methods that can be used to assign apps to the convenience keys on your device. Aside from that, most users are left out in the cold when it comes to easily navigating the constantly evolving landscape of their favorite smartphone. Thankfully some third party application developers have taken it upon themselves to build some handy solutions to the consumer needs and have made some great BlackBerry shortcut apps that are easy to download and setup in minutes. Today we will be looking at one particular offering from a company called Mmmooo. The app goes by the name SuperQWERTY. We have 15 FREE copies to give away to loyal BBGeeks readers – instructions on how to enter to win one of these licenses are at the end of this review UPDATE: Contest Winners Have Been Selected:
Okay folks – we had a great response to this contest and we want to thank everyone for participating. Remember – if you were not one of the lucky ones chosen you can still grab the SuperQWERTY app for only $3.99 here. Here is the list of winners. You will all be contacted through the email address you entered while commenting. Xcetrachick, Andrew, Quenfis, Pink2, Andrea, Reanna Rupani, Angela, Jayne, Jonathan, Albert, Kerzhan, Joel R, Steve, Rob and Mimi B
What is SuperQWERTY
SuperQWERTY is a BlackBerry application designed to increase your productivity by making it easier to locate and launch important apps in a streamlined manor. Essentially SuperQWERTY adds an icon to your desktop and a new shortcut to your “Q” key (be sure to disable dialing from the home screen) as well as a system wide menu option that can launch the SuperQWERTY app. To take it a step further, you are able to launch SuperQWERTY from within (almost) any application you have installed on your BlackBerry. This means you no longer have to back out of whatever application you were in when you want to launch a new one.
Putting SuperQWERTY to the test
The first thing I tested was the new shortcut that has been added to the “Q” key. Since my “Q” is already in use as a default profile switch shortcut (normal <-> quiet) I was worried there might be a conflict. Turns out this worked exactly as promised with the “Q” key now launching SuperQWERTY with a quick press. The previous functionality of the “Q” key is maintained and only switches profiles if the key is held down for a second or so. Pressing the “Q” key brings up a complete list of every application you have loaded onto your BlackBerry. In addition to any applications installed, the app also allows access to common utilities and processes that are used on a daily basis. These include but are not limited to composing messages, launching BBM functions, message event listening, message search and much, much more. The list of actionable items presented by SuperQWERTY is very straight forward and all apps are listed in alphabetical order for the most part. I had a couple apps that seemed to be added at random to the end of my long list. These apps launched fine when clicked but were for some reason excluded from the alphabetical sorting. The same alphabetical list is pulled up whether you launch SuperQWERTY from the shortcut key, the icon on your desktop or by first pressing the menu button (from the home screen or within most apps) then selecting it from the recently added menu item. To launch any application from the list provided by SuperQWERTY simply hover over its’ name and click your trackball. QUICK TIP: Press the space bar when viewing your SuperQWERTY list in order to search for a specific title.
Setting up BlackBerry Shortcuts with SuperQWERTY
Not wanting to settle with just providing you a list of clickable app links, SuperQWERTY takes it one step further and allows you to assign your own custom shortcuts to any installed application or function on your BlackBerry. For each application you can set a keyboard shortcut. The shortcut will be one of the 80 available keys combinations on your keyboard. You can also choose a color to associate with each shortcut so that similar tasks are grouped together for easy reference. SuperQWERTY will rearrange your list of applications as you add shortcut keys. If shortcuts are specified for an app it will be moved to the top of the list. The apps now become arranged alphabetically by shortcut key with any remaining apps displayed in the default alphabetical order by title. At any point you can change the shortcut key and color assigned to any app on your device.
Final Thoughts on SuperQWERTY
The more I use the SuperQWERTY app on my Bold, the more I see the value in it. Despite having a large, vivid screen on my BlackBerry, it is sometimes difficult to quickly bounce between some of my favorite apps. The time it takes to identify and launch each application on my system is not usually too long but when you add up that time throughout the day it actually becomes a bit startling. SuperQWERTY makes moving from one app on the BlackBerry to another as simple as possible and if you are looking for a way to shave a few minutes off of your navigation time and pump that into more productive tasks then it is absolutely the app for you. My only problem with SuperQWERTY was it functioned slightly different than I had imagined. Instead of defining shortcut keys for an app and being able to use those shortcuts from anywhere, I instead had to actually launch SuperQWERTY then hit the chosen keyboard shortcut. In most cases the same keys used to launch something from with SuperQWERTY does something completely different if pressed from the home screen which can be slightly confusing. This adds one extra click (the “Q” key) to my navigation process which is not a huge deal. Although I would prefer if I did not have to open SuperQWERTY before using the shortcuts.
Now for the good stuff
The kind folks at Mmmooo have given BBGeeks 15 licenses of SuperQWERTY to give away to our loyal readers! In order to enter to win one of these free licenses simply leave a comment on this post letting us know why you need it =) Pretty simple right? Right. Please use a valid email address so that we can contact you to get your PIN information. Leave your comments here and I will pick the winners at random on Friday afternoon (December 18, 2009). Good Luck everyone! The SuperQWERTY BlackBerry shortcut app can be purchased from the BBGeeks Store for $3.99