Free BlackBerry Storm Downloads: Five (More) Must-Have Apps

My favorite kind of BlackBerry application is a free BlackBerry application. The only problem: You often get what you pay for when it comes to BlackBerry software.

Often, but not always. The following five free BlackBerry downloads break the rule. Each and every one of these BlackBerry Storm apps will enhance your overall smartphone experience, and not a one requires the use of your wallet or its contents.

Shortly after the Storm's release, I delivered to you seven of the best free Storm apps that were available at the time. Now, I'm updating that list with my picks for the current crop of best free BlackBerry Storm downloads. My latest selections include free software to help you locate businesses, restaurants, hotels and more, from wherever you may be; an app that locks your BlackBerry Storm's screen during calls; a YouTube client for watching Storm optimized videos on the go; a Storm-optimized mobile news aggregator; and an on-device music store.

(For more free BlackBerry software recommendations -- for the Storm and otherwise -- visit CIO's Free BlackBerry Downloads page.)

Beyond Cool: Beyond411 Local Search for the Storm

The Beyond411 search app for BlackBerry smartphones isn't new. In fact, I mentioned it a year ago in one of my first free BlackBerry downloads stories and even filmed a video how-to on the best way to use the app.

What is new is Beyond411's Storm support, which was announced this week. Now BlackBerry Storm users have access to the same speedy local search, Global Positioning System support and BlackBerry address-book integration available to all other BlackBerry owners via Beyond411.

To employ the app, you preset locations -- like home or work -- or use GPS and then type what you're looking for. The application then provides a listing of the closest options. The software also calculates driving directions based on preset locations, or you can employ GPS to determine current locations. (Note: There were some early reports of GPS problems with the Storm version of Beyond411, but the developer behind the app says they've all been resolved.)

To reduce the number of keystrokes needed, Beyond411 guesses what you want. For example, if you type "Best B" it will offers up a set of options with "Best Buy" atop the list. The application can add search results to your address books or e-mail them in the form of v-cards. Beyond411 can also help identify the best prices on items at local retailers using the Yokel shopping search service. You'll also find a set of external plug-ins for flight status tracking, stock information and eBay bidding on the Beyond411 site.

Download Beyond411 over the air (OTA) via BlackBerry browser.

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