Skype via Blackberry via OS X = Hoop Jumping

No nonsense.

I wanted Skype on my Blackberry since I use a whole lot of Skype IM. There’s a program for this – IM+ for Skype. You need Blackberry Desktop Software to install it, which runs on Windows. I’m on a Mac, as are a whole lot of other folks.

Some people have had trouble with this for some reason. While I’m usually the one with the trouble, I think a few folks were just missing a piece here or there that either kept them from getting the Blackberry connected properly, or getting the BB Desktop Software jammed up somehow. Nevertheless, here’s the quick and dirty to getting it done…

  • Download the trial version of IM+ for Skype
  • Have Parallels 3.0 handy (3.0 I said – I couldn’t get a Windows to Blackberry connection working, but after the upgrade all was well)
  • I used Windows XP within Parallels
  • Make sure Sun Java is installed on that Windows virtual machine – the Blackberry application loading software needs it (you can get that here)
  • Move that IM+ for Skype app into “Drop Box” under your Mac Public Folder
  • Bring the app onto the Windows desktop, and unzip it
  • Open Blackberry Desktop, then connect your device; enter password if necessary
  • Click the Application manager icon, and choose the app folder you unzipped onto the desktop
  • Go
  • Now, this puppy is going to run for a few minutes, then stall. Be patient, because it will never “unstall.” Wait. Wait some more. Wait even more. Go out to lunch, then come back and wait again. It will always look half finished. I tried three times, then got a clue and simply unplugged the Blackberry from the cable. The software had loaded, and worked just fine.

    I’d go into gross detail, but you get the idea and I don’t want a lot of technical questions I can’t answer flying my way. But I do have a few notes on the IM+ software. First, it does its intended job – I’ve had no problems sending or receiving IMs. Second, if you have unanswered chats on your desktop Skype when you hit the road, it’s going to upload those as though it thinks you want to continue. Minor prob, if one at all. Last – being logged in via the phone does not signify web presence, as in folks don’t know you’re online by looking at those fancy little icons like I have on my contact page. Again, who cares.

    Based on my initial review, I’ll probably purchase the IM+ when the trial period runs out (if it even does – who knows). It’s pretty handy if you are a Skyper, and also have a Blackberry permanently fused between your two hands (I know a good surgeon who can do this if you like too).

    AdiĆ³s.

    UPDATE: A few additional points…

  • I did not need to disable the Blackberry USB extensions (/System/Library/Extensions/BlackberryUSB.kext and /System/Library/Extensions/BlackberryUSBDev.kext) – the device connected fine, but if and only if you launched the desktop app first and then connected the cable.
  • If the desktop software failed, a reboot of the virtual machine was required, which isn’t really much of a pain since it is virtual. This was the case whether the extensions were enabled or disabled.
  • UPDATE 2: Now, there’s Skype for the iPhone, compliments of the same company. Hope it’s easier for Mac users to install.

    Comments

    Udi says:

    Why not simply use iSkoot Blackberry for Skype? you can use your device browser to surf to http://www.iskoot.com and download the version for your device.

    Michael Gracie says:

    Now that I know about it (it’s certainly pretty new), I would. The fact that they want such level of detail regarding my services (mobile number, skype name, etc.) means I won’t.

    I just wanted a chat client, and iSkoot seems like a voice client +. Why do I need a voice client when my cell phone already IS a voice client?