Posts Tagged ‘ Blackberry ’

Why iphone leaves Blackberry for dust

I admit I was a bit gutted to give up my Blackberry. If it’s hadn’t been for Vodafone mucking around and delaying the release of the Bold and Storm (maybe Blackberries fault) I would never have switched to iphone. Despite being a home Mac user, I wasn’t thrilled at giving up my blackberry (I know how Obama feels).

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Blackberry 9000 update, update

UPDATE…

Well surprise surprise the Blackberry 9000 AKA Bold didn’t appear today, “the end of the month”…. grrrr. Apparently it is being tested with the “Corporate Team” my source expressed dismay at how long Vodafone NZ take to access these products, what the hell could they be assessing, it’s not like Vodafone NZ are going to find anything that hasn’t already been found overseas, just get on and release the phone already!

I am now veering towards the iphone had another demo today from someone who could demonstrate why the functions would be useful for business.

I have been told by someone who would probably know what they are talking about that the Blackberry Bold aka Blackberry 9000 is due here around mid August, apparently the 15th.

I’m not sure how seriously to take this as staff have been pretty consistent that if it was going to be released they usually know a month out. On the other hand I suspect this handset will be a reasonably big deal, it being the first 3G offering of what is arguably the most popular business tool on the planet. So they may be keeping it quiet.

Telstra Australia already has the handset listed on online and it will be available by the end of the month in Australia, so conceivably that would tie in with a NZ release. The last thing Vodafone would want is a whole bunch turning up on trademe!

I was surprised that in two Vodafone stores salespeople recommended against the iphone as a Blackberry replacement saying it wouldn’t do the things (like push email) that a Blackberry does. There was also the shortage of battery life (and that you couldn’t carry a spare battery) and there are currently no ‘off the shelf’ car chargers available. Still it is a nice package although I still have reservations about the ‘virtual’ keyboard.

I suspect like some people have said that the next iphone to come out will be vastly improved and that also the 3G network will have improved here by that time and it may be a viable alternative to a Blackberry. An iphone without 3G access is a bit like living way out in the countryside with metal roads and owning a Ferrari.

As soon as my source provides an actual release date for the Blackberry 9000 I’ll have it up here.

Blackberry 9000 VS iphone

For once this is a telecoms related post where I’m not going to get stuck into either Telecom or Vodafone.

 

I was listening to Debbie Mayo-Smith gushing on about her new iphone in the new technology spot on National Radio, I think she is the replacement for the equally irritatingly enthusiasm  of  Simon and Marie Young with her overly ‘posh’ English accent I usually turned it off after about 10 seconds.

 

Mayo-Smith carried on about how “life changing” the iphone was (it’s a frigging phone for Christ’s sake) and how it had, well, features that would be fairly unsurprising to a Mac user, mainly around being easy to use.

 

She claimed she had a blackberry and it wasn’t a patch on the iphone because – get this – you couldn’t turn off the email function of a Blackberry but you could with an iphone (she is wrong about the Blackberry). WTF is the point of having a Blackberry if you don’t want email. Then she went on about how you could disable a whole lot of other things on the iphone to avoid costs – like web browsing, she helpfully suggested you could just use the wifi, if you happened to be in an area that had free access wifi…

 

By this point I understood why she hadn’t had much luck with phones, she actually just needs a phone for calls, if she doesn’t want web browsing, push email then why would you even bother with the iphone (or the Blackberry) and why the hell would you get an iphone and then disable all the internet based functions?

 

It made me realise just how successful Apple have been at their marketing and that a few whizz functions such as a screen that moves position when you turn the phone, and a push button screen, and pretty visual interface have suckered in bubble-heads like Mayo-Smith.

 

Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big apple fan, and this is obviously a very clever product.

 

But…

 

I had a play with one last week and the ‘virtual’ keyboard in not a patch on the tactile keyboard on a full QWERT Blackberry. It reminded me of the very first Palm Pilot I got with the little stylus and ‘graffiti’ input system, novel, but hardly practical. I’ll happily challenge anyone to a typing race, Blackberry vs iphone and I’m sure I could out-type an iphone user and with 100% more accuracy.

 

There were plenty of bells and whistles and it was a sexy, although large, package, but within 5 minutes I realised this would be no replacement for my Blackberry (apart from the fact it’s a bit like comparing the running costs of a Honda Jazz to a Range Rover).

 

Blackberry have been making well designed handsets with clever interface methods coupled with a dead easy email system long before Steve Jobs woke up one morning and figured out he could make some money by turning the ipod into a phone. It’s just the average consumer didn’t really consider the Blackberry because it was seen as a business tool. Like Apple it isn’t until you pick them up and use them you realise what you’ve been missing out on.

 

It looks like Blackberry have come up with a handset that appears to address the challenge the iphone presents… called the Blackberry Bold it’s due out in Australia in August, but no news from Vodafone here yet about a launch date.

 

It looks like a clever handset and retains the full key board because this is still the best way to input text, it’s also thinner and more stylish that previous full QWERTY handsets. Something to look forward to. 

 

To Vodafone’s credit the Blackberry service is something they do very well, so let’s hope that Vodafone aren’t going to shag around too long on releasing it!

 

UPDATE:

I have been trying to get some kind of indication about what Vodafone plans were for the next Blackberry, a few emails later and I got this…

 

“Unfortunately we do not have an indication of when the Blackberry Bold (or similar 3G model) will be released in NZ”

 

OK, now this reminds me a bit about the mystery iphones that ‘unexpectandly’ turned up is the Vodafone rep seriously suggesting that they don’t know what they are doing with new models of mobile over the next few months? Unlikely, but that doesn’t help those of us who would rather not waste $800 odd on an old model Blackberry. I notice they are specialing off the Blackberry Curve so possibly there is going to be a new Blackberry appearing on the scene shortly

 

http://stuff.co.nz/4635796a28.html

Vodafone’s iphone… a ‘bit’ expensive

I knew there was going to be a catch, there was no way Vodafone (or Apple) was going to sell a premium handset for $199 without there being some pretty hefty fish hooks providing a lucrative revenue stream.

These fish hooks appear to come in the form of some eye watering data plans, the data changes are quite frankly extortionate and I just don’t see how Vodafone thinks these are going to work long term. I guess that somewhere Apple is getting a fee and that may be the reason, either that or Vodafone think the allure of the iphone is so high that customers will be blinded by the sheer appeal of the handset and stomach the changes.

Think again Vodafone.

My contract comes up next month and having had a Blackberry since they first arrived here I was genuinely pondering switching to an iphone. As a Mac user at home there was some definite synergies and as the last person on the planet without an ipod I could kill two birds with one stone. The down side was that I like the full QWERTY key pad on the Blackberry and overall the Blackberries have been pretty reliable (with the exception of the 8707) and Vodafone do offer good service for the Blackberry.

On balance I guess I was more attracted by the ascetics of the iphone and a long standing preference for Mac products. The brain was saying Blackberry… and now the wallet is too.

Internet data prices and speeds in NZ are piss poor, and Vodafone should be doing far more to offer us a competitively priced and faster service, the iphone offer is none of these. If Vodafone want more people using the Internet on their phones this is the wrong way to go about it.

A lot of commentators are angry, I’m not angry, or surprised really, just disappointed. Apple and Vodafone have just lost some new business.