The mobile world will welcome the birth of a new mobile OS at the beginning of next year, with Research In Motion (RIM) setting a concrete date for the launch of its BlackBerry 10 OS.
The new "peek" feature demoed on a pre-launch device.
RIM will host a number of launch events on the same day, unveiling the platform simultaneously across the world. At the event, RIM is planning to announce two new BlackBerry 10 handsets, plus it will finish revealing the feature set of the new platform. Hopefully, Australian availability of the new phones will also be on the agenda.
BlackBerry 10 OS has been an enormous undertaking for RIM; it's a project that has stalled major releases for the company throughout 2012, and has seen RIM's market share dip to single digits in all of the major markets globally. Despite this, the company will be hoping to convert its 70 million-strong current subscriber base to the new platform and devices next year.
Popular speculation suggests that the new, unannounced handsets will be a mix of traditional BlackBerry style and the current smartphone trends. One of the new BB10 devices will come with the famous BlackBerry QWERTY keyboard plus a touchscreen, while the other will be a straight candy-bar profile touchscreen.
The software introduces some new ideas to the smartphone category, too, especially the new "peek" feature, which lets users see new messages delivered to the unified inbox without needing to exit the active application.