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10/27/2008
02:02 PM
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BlackBerry Gets Live Video Streaming

The mobile broadcasting service Qik announced support for the BlackBerry Bold and Pearl, with more handsets to come.

Users soon will be able to use their BlackBerrys as video broadcasting machines thanks to new support from Qik.

The service enables users to broadcast live video from a cell phone's camera directly to the Web over Wi-Fi or 3G connections. Previously, the application had been available on Windows Mobile and Symbian smartphones, "jailbroken" iPhones, as well as multiple Java 2 Micro Edition feature phones.

Qik is initially launching alpha support for a few BlackBerry smartphones running operating system 4.5 or above. Currently, that means the BlackBerry Bold, Pearl 8120, and Pearl 8130 will be able to stream video, and support for devices like the BlackBerry Curve and Flip will be available soon.

"We are excited to bring our lifestyle technology to the millions of BlackBerry users worldwide," said Ramu Sunkara, CEO of Qik, in a statement. "In our quest to bring mobile live video sharing to the masses, we now support the broadest range of platforms, including Symbian, Windows Mobile, BlackBerry, and Java-enabled mass-market phones."

Users can get Qik by registering at the Web site, and the public beta is expected to debut in a few weeks. The video-streaming service has been used by the likes of Steve Jobs, Bono, Pope Benedict, and multiple journalists, the company said.

Social networking is key to the service, as the company said more than 60% of videos from Qik are shared by users on other sites. Qik users on BlackBerry will be able to have embeddable video streams on Facebook, MySpace, Orkut, and other social networking sites.

Qik isn't alone in the mobile video streaming field, as it faces competition from Kyte and Flixwagon.

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