Free BlackBerry Apps: Nine Torch 9800 Compatible Downloads

CIO.com's BlackBerry watcher Al Sacco rounds up nine valuable, free BlackBerry apps that'll run on RIM's brand new BlackBerry Torch 9800 slider smartphone.

bbtorchapps_1-100347682-orig.jpg

You've got your brand new BlackBerry Torch 9800 smartphone in hand. All your contacts are transferred, wallpaper customized, your various e-mail addresses set up.

You're ready to start loading all your favorite BlackBerry applications...but you find that many aren't yet compatible with the Torch—or at least you can't download them from BlackBerry App World or the vendors' sites.

It's true, lots of quality BlackBerry apps are not yet available for RIM's latest and greatest: Pandora for BlackBerry; Amazon's Kindle app; LinkedIn for BlackBerry; the list goes on. But I was able to find a handful of great apps that are available. Check out the following slides for a list of nine valuable applications for the BlackBerry Torch 9800. Best of all: You'll never have to open your wallet; all of these BlackBerry apps are free.

bbtorchapps_2-100347683-orig.jpg
Capture It

This great, free BlackBerry app lets you quickly grab screen shots from your RIM smartphone. Simply open up your BlackBerry menu at any time and choose the Capture It option or assign the app to a convenience key for easy access. Screen shots are saved to your BlackBerry Torch's picture library. (Note: Screen shots for this slide show were taken using Capture It.)

Download Capture It via BlackBerry.

Review: BlackBerry Torch 9800: Hot Hardware but Software Lukewarm

Slideshow: RIM BlackBerry Torch 9800: A Visual Tour

Get Your BlackBerry Black Belt with CIO.com's BlackBerry Bible: Everything You Need to Know About Your RIM Smartphone

bbtorchapps_3-100347684-orig.jpg
Google Maps

Google Maps for BlackBerry is a treasure trove of valuable features and information packed into a single mobile app. Find walking, biking, driving and public transit directions; view your location on a map; find nearby business listing; search by voice; check out satellite imagery of your area; view traffic alerts; and much more.

Review: BlackBerry Torch 9800: Hot Hardware but Software Lukewarm

Slideshow: RIM BlackBerry Torch 9800: A Visual Tour

Download Google Maps via BlackBerry.

Get Your BlackBerry Black Belt with CIO.com's BlackBerry Bible: Everything You Need to Know About Your RIM Smartphone

bbtorchapps_4-100347685-orig.jpg
Plug It In

RIM's BlackBerry OS has a built-in low-battery indicator, but it doesn't let you customize your own battery-alerts. In comes Plug It In, a free BlackBerry app that works on the Torch 9800 and lets you choose when you want to know your battery is low: 20 percent; 30 percent; etc. You can also choose to receive audible alerts and accompany them with custom LED colors.

Download Plug It In via BlackBerry.

Review: BlackBerry Torch 9800: Hot Hardware but Software Lukewarm

Slideshow: RIM BlackBerry Torch 9800: A Visual Tour

Get Your BlackBerry Black Belt with CIO.com's BlackBerry Bible: Everything You Need to Know About Your RIM Smartphone

bbtorchapps_5-100347686-orig.jpg
Flight Mode

RIM's BlackBerry OS "condenses" e-mail messages to reduce strain on wireless networks and speed up delivery. Flight Mode for BlackBerry downloads all additional content needed to view "truncated" BlackBerry e-mail before you turn off your device for flight. Just activate Flight Mode before your plane takes off, and the app downloads additional content, turns off wireless connections and powers down your BlackBerry. Turn it back on in-flight, and you're good to go.

Download Flight Mode from BlackBerry App World.

Review: BlackBerry Torch 9800: Hot Hardware but Software Lukewarm

Slideshow: RIM BlackBerry Torch 9800: A Visual Tour

Get Your BlackBerry Black Belt with CIO.com's BlackBerry Bible: Everything You Need to Know About Your RIM Smartphone

bbtorchapps_6-100347687-orig.jpg
Google Mobile Search App

Sure, you can search the Web using the search section of your BlackBerry browser's "start" page, but why would you when you could employ Google's Mobile App for BlackBerry? Besides offering a less cluttered search-interface, Google Mobile App lets you search by your location for nearby results. And you can search via voice—no typing needed.

Download Google Mobile App for BlackBerry.

Review: BlackBerry Torch 9800: Hot Hardware but Software Lukewarm

Slideshow: RIM BlackBerry Torch 9800: A Visual Tour

Get Your BlackBerry Black Belt with CIO.com's BlackBerry Bible: Everything You Need to Know About Your RIM Smartphone

bbtorchapps_7-100347688-orig.jpg
Tag Reader for BlackBerry

You know those funky, multicolor barcode-like "tags" popping up on movie posters, flyers, in magazines and just about everywhere else? They're meant to quickly provide cell-phone users with additional information on a given subject, and they're really quite cool. But they're also useless if you don't have an app that can translate them into Web links, like Microsoft's free Tag Reader. Simply snap a pic of the tag using the free app and you're golden.

Download Tag Reader via BlackBerry.

Review: BlackBerry Torch 9800: Hot Hardware but Software Lukewarm

Slideshow: RIM BlackBerry Torch 9800: A Visual Tour

Get Your BlackBerry Black Belt with CIO.com's BlackBerry Bible: Everything You Need to Know About Your RIM Smartphone

bbtorchapps_8-100347689-orig.jpg
bit.lify

There are plenty of URL-shortening services, but few are as easy to employ via BlackBerry as bit.ly, thanks to the free bit.lify BlackBerry app. After installing bit.lify, surf on over to any Web site via the BlackBerry browser, open your BlackBerry menu and choose the bit.lify option. Then just specify whether you want to share the new URL via e-mail/SMS/etc. or copy it for pasting.

Download bit.lify via BlackBerry.

Review: BlackBerry Torch 9800: Hot Hardware but Software Lukewarm

Slideshow: RIM BlackBerry Torch 9800: A Visual Tour

Get Your BlackBerry Black Belt with CIO.com's BlackBerry Bible: Everything You Need to Know About Your RIM Smartphone

bbtorchapps_9-100347690-orig.jpg
Foursquare for BlackBerry

Torch-owning fans of location-based social-networking service Foursquare will be glad to know the BlackBerry mobile app works like a charm on RIM's new touch-screen/QWERTY combo device. Check in, see your "friends'" whereabouts, view profiles, add tips and more, all via BlackBerry.

Download Foursquare via BlackBerry.

Review: BlackBerry Torch 9800: Hot Hardware but Software Lukewarm

Slideshow: RIM BlackBerry Torch 9800: A Visual Tour

Get Your BlackBerry Black Belt with CIO.com's BlackBerry Bible: Everything You Need to Know About Your RIM Smartphone

bbtorchapps_10-100347691-orig.jpg
Google Voice

Google's free mobile "dialer" for BlackBerry lets you place calls and send/receive SMS test messages via your Google Voice number; view Google Voice call history; access voicemail transcripts; and more. And it integrates with your BlackBerry's native address book for streamlined access to contacts.

Download Google Voice via BlackBerry.

Review: BlackBerry Torch 9800: Hot Hardware but Software Lukewarm

Slideshow: RIM BlackBerry Torch 9800: A Visual Tour

Get Your BlackBerry Black Belt with CIO.com's BlackBerry Bible: Everything You Need to Know About Your RIM Smartphone