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Summary:

Ask any BlackBerry owner about their device, and there’s a good chance they’ll sing the praises of the keyboard, the push email, and the ability to rapidly exchange text messages and IMs. Plus, a fairly decent Facebook client for the gadget integrates seamlessly with the BlackBerry […]

socialscopeAsk any BlackBerry owner about their device, and there’s a good chance they’ll sing the praises of the keyboard, the push email, and the ability to rapidly exchange text messages and IMs. Plus, a fairly decent Facebook client for the gadget integrates seamlessly with the BlackBerry Inbox. In other words, it’s a perfect communications device — except for two things: It’s been lacking a high-quality Twitter client and a native Internet telephony app from one of the big boys such as Truphone or Skype. Well, soon BlackBerry owners will no longer bemoan the social media void. They’ll be able to experience on-the-go nirvana with SocialScope, one of the most elegant BlackBerry apps I have ever used.

Not only does SocialScope allow me to use Twitter services (including sharing photos, videos and links), it allows me to stay in touch with my Facebook contacts as well by bringing their status updates into a common social inbox. I also can keep track of what my friends are doinsocialscope1g on Flickr. SocialScope will support other social-networking services, depending on their popularity. Its idea of aggregating all social media into a single application is similar to Motorola’s MotoBlur software interface for Android-based mobile phones.

“Our vision is to optimize social media for the smartphone, similar to what RIM did for email,” said Amit Kumar, who started Ubiquitous Systems, the company behind SocialScope. “We call SocialScope a mobile inbox for your social networks.” At our Mobilize 09 conference, many industry insiders said that social networking was the primary driver of mobile data usage on cell phones. With the exception of Facebook’s iPhone application, the social media experience on mobile phones is limited. SocialScope is combining some server-side processing with native mobile apps, such as its BlackBerry application, to give people a good experience.

So far, SocialScope has exceeded my expectations. Though still in beta, the application has a polished feel; it leverages the BlackBerry keyboard and track ball to maximum effect. The app is actually divided into virtual tabs, and you can use the trackball to scroll among them. The tabs include the entire inbox which has all messages, tweets directed at you (@om), private direct messages, Facebook updates, and a separate tab for Flickr.
socialscope2The user interface is clean, simple and intuitive — or at least as good as you can get on the BlackBerry platform, which doesn’t boast many apps that meet my aesthetic sense. The only problem I’ve had with the app: Because it runs in the background and is constantly checking for updates, it drains your battery quite rapidly.

SocialScope is planning to launch the complete app on the BlackBerry sometime in the near future, but it also is working on clients for Palm, Android, iPhone, Symbian and Windows Mobile. Nevertheless, if you are a BlackBerry owner, it makes sense for you to download this app the instant it becomes available.

  1. Social messaging and VoIP is hot on Blackberry too, got skype, Facebook and Vopium and have everything on my bold.

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  2. Did you ask how they’re going to price it? Looked like there would be a free, ‘lite’ version along with a premium version of some sort.

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    1. I’ve been using the Lite version for about 3 months now and trust me, you don’t need the premium version.

      The Lite version already has everything you want.

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  3. Om, welcome to the SocialScope community! It is the best app for managing your social activity and the one I use most on my BB. Happy to hear about the Flickr integration ;-)

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  4. If you haven’t already you should check out UberTwitter – the best Twitter app for BlackBerry that’s available in a free, ad-supported version or a $4.99 lifetime subscription: http://www.ubertwitter.com

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    1. obviously not an SS user yet Dan. Talking from experience Uber sucks ck. Think uber think… comodore64… SS rocks. You’ll see ;) – Tell you what Dan… when I get a bunch of invites, i’ll come back here and give you one ;)

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    2. I have to agree with Dan. I like the UberTwitter as well. I have multiple Twitter accounts and can use them all flawlessly! Facebook I feel is where the problem is on the BB.

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  5. Apparently only high profile bloggers are able to get beta invites. I’ve tried contacting SocialScope numerous times through the signup form and directly through Twitter to no avail. I am the head of social media at my company and would love to test out the app. I think it would behoove SocialScope to have some sort of vetting process for their beta invites.

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    1. im not a high profile blogger and i received an invite. i would suggest that you send multiple invite requests from different emails and repeat with the same emails at least once a week. it truly is a great APP that i would recommend to any Blackberry user who is on twitter on an hourly basis such as me.

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  6. @amanda, not so. I’ve been a beta user for several months and it is as fantastic as an experience as Om alludes. One feature Om may have missed above is the persistent groups function that makes scanning for tweets/updates from stronger ties easier.

    It does cause a battery drain, so I slow down the update intervals and manually refresh if actively using.

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  7. [...] socialscope Social inbox for mobile. Funny quote: "The only problem I’ve had with the app: Because it runs in the background and is constantly checking for updates, it drains your battery quite rapidly." I bet he’s already uninstalled it. (categories: blackberry twitter facebook mobile socialsoftware ) [...]

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  8. [...] BlackBerry is a perfect communications device, except for two things: It’s been lacking a high-quality Twitter client and a native Internet telephony app from one of the big boys such as Truphone or Skype. Well, soon BlackBerry owners will no longer bemoan the social media void. GigaOm  [...]

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  9. I’ve been using ss for a while on my storm, and there are only good things i can say about it. the ability to tweet and check on facebook in the same app is pretty awesome. the app does hog the battery though, and its the first one to be killed when I need to conserve power. all in all, the beta runs superb on my storm, and I can’t wait for the final cut.

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