Perhaps you envy people with those cool push-to-talk phones--the kind that let you instantly speak to someone else on the network without having to dial the number. Well, a new app called Push2Talk lets you do the same thing with higher-end BlackBerries, like the Bold, Storm and Curve. Got a friend with one of these phones? Each of you can buy the app for $4.99. Install it, then swap the PIN numbers of your BlackBerries, just as you would to use the BlackBerry instant messaging network. Now you can instantly send shout-outs to the other person by highlighting his name in the Push2Talk app, and pushing a button on the left edge of the phone. Hitting the button records your voice message. Release it, and the recording is sent to the other phone, arriving about two seconds later.
The software has an annoying way of cutting off the last second or so of your voice message. It helps to hold the button for a second longer after you're done speaking. Still, they need to fix this irritating problem.
Push2Talk only works with BlackBerries; each phone must have the app installed, and users must share their PINs with each other. But that makes the software quite useful for those with lots of BlackBerry-toting friends and colleagues. Lots of businesses, including the Globe, issue BlackBerries to dozens or hundreds of workers. For these companies, Push2Talk could be a worthwhile investment.