Research In Motion issued version 3.0 of its BlackBerry Traffic navigation app via the BlackBerry Beta Zone consumer trial program, adding a new turn-by-turn voice guidance option enabling hands-free navigation.
Consumers can set up BlackBerry Traffic 3.0's voice guidance feature to communicate instructions through their smartphone's Bluetooth connection or using their vehicle's speakers. Directions can be as detailed as the user wishes, offering assistance at every turn. BlackBerry Traffic also offers timesaving suggestions, alerting drivers of forthcoming toll roads and how to avoid them as well as updates on traffic conditions and suggested alternate routes. The app also allows consumers to invite others using BlackBerry Messenger, although RIM has temporarily disabled the feature to limit access to Beta Zone members.
BlackBerry continues to struggle to keep pace with Google's Android and Apple's iOS--as of September 2011, BlackBerry devices represent 18.9 percent of the U.S. smartphone market, down 4.6 percentage points compared to three months earlier. Android dominates the U.S. smartphone segment with 44.8 percent market share, followed by iOS at 27.4 percent.