Free Chronograph / Timer for BlackBerry – Created by Michael Hong
Compatibility: OS 4.1 and higher
Well Michael Hong has done us all a service and released a very useful Stopwatch / Timer for free. This is really something I feel RIM should have built into every BlackBerry. There are one or two bugs and there is no real support page but you can get the program at the OTA link above. The program has quite a few features and works very well so read on for the review.
Installation: Installation can only be done over the air at this time. The install is around 23KB so don’t worry to much about data transfer charges if you are on pay as you go. There is no real support page but you can really figure out the program by yourself. There are no separate configuration options so I will go straight into the meat of the application.
Interface: The program is broken into two parts, the chronograph and the timer. You can change between the two of these by selecting the option you want in the drop down menu. You can see a screenshot of this above. By default you start in the chronograph setting.
Chronograph Usage: The chronograph is a simple and easy to use stopwatch. There is a start and reset button for you to control the chronograph. Below these buttons are the complete elapsed time and then the time for the current lap. You can then program another lap by clicking in on the lap button that shows up once you hit start. Every time you hit the lap button your time is recorded below in a ever growing column. The column shows the total elapsed time and the length of the recorded lap. Once you hit the stop button you have the option to copy the lap information into the clipboard using the copy to clipboard option in the menu.
Timer Usage: This is my favorite part of the application. There are a couple of preset options in the menu to count down from. You have Expresso which is 25 seconds. Then you have 5, 10, 15, 20, 30, and 60 minute preset intervals. You also have the option to create your own intervals.
A nice feature is that you can set up to two additional alarms for the timer. For example you can make it alert you when there is 5 minutes left and 1 minute left. This is completely user customizable. There is also the option to choose from around 20 different alerts. Sadly there is no option to use ringtones and mp3’s that you have on your device. You also have the option to choose your alert based on vibration, tone, or vibration+tone together. This kind of rounds out the application. The application also stays open if you have a current timer or chronograph running and you hit the back button twice.
Currently there is a bug that if the time is updated on the BlackBerry while the program is running it will mess up the count. This is not a big bug but can get in the way if you have auto time update with your desktop or carrier. The other bug I noticed is that the talk and end buttons are supposed to start and stop the countdown. The talk button does start the countdown but the end button exits the application. Neither of these are biggies so you can more or less disregard them.
- Stopwatch with lap feature and ability to copy to clipboard
- Timer with preset values and dual alarms
- There is no support for using ringtones on your BlackBerry as alerts
- No support page or information page other than a announcement on BlackBerryForums.
Conclusion: The software is quite good for a free unsupported piece of software. Personally I would count it in league with the rest of the freeware must have software for BlackBerry such as bbweather and bbtoday. I think many people will find it useful and I really think RIM should consider integrating such functionality into the OS. Give the Chronograph / Timer a spin and report back what you think.