Is Blackberry for Newb Casual User? Questions and Comparison
I am posting here because I am seriously considering the Blackberry 10 as my top choice, followed by Samsung S3 or Notes 2, and Iphone 4S or 5. I have eliminated the windows as a selection, as I can simply not get used to it in stores anyways, and I see it is limited in terms of software upgrade, ie people from Windows 7 cant go to Windows 8, whilst it looks like one can keep upgrading with IOS and Android, not sure about blackberry (pls confirm). Again, the blackberry is my top choice, but I need help making the decision. Now, my background -> Newbster
I have never had a smart phone, I have always gone with Nokia phones that never die, have great batteries, and used as phone / music player. I want to move to the smart phone and the main things I want from it are as follows (and pretty common to many) in order of importance:
1) Call quality
3) Checking my Yahoo email
4) Camera (so I donít have to carry a real one with me at times)
5) Internet Browsing and GPS when walking
6) Listening to Music (movies is not as crucial, but of course nice)
7) Good Battery
8) Apps? Donít know much about, but checking for cheap gas price might be nice.
Choosing the right phone is extremely important, as here in Canada, we are trapped for 3 years contact with the same phone, so it is extremely costly and with technology evolving so quickly, would like it to be useful for the 3 years. Now here are some questions, if you can answer some that would be nice, but pls, explain in details the reasoning:
A) Is the blackberry 10 ok for a Newbster such as myself? I played a bit with it at a phone store, and felt the jesters felt natural enough and usable. However, I wasnít sure if this phone is more for work than for a casual user, as compared to Samsung S3 or Iphone 5
B) How is the Call Quality on the Blackberry 10? I will be with Rogers.
C) How does servicing work if there is a problem with the phone or it needs to be fixed. I live in Toronto / Canada. I know that it is extremely easy / convenient with the iphone, as there are Apple stores everywhere. But donít know about Blackberry and Samsung. Also, how is service in general from Blackberry? Does it take forever to get a replacement / repair?
D) Do you believe an extended battery will be made by third party companies for the blackberry 10 eventually? Simply getting a second backup one is ok, but I know there are nice extended batteries for the Samsung S3, and the Iphone has Case/Charger that is very convenient, not requiring any cables in between the phone and case. I donít like the external battery charger, I prefer extended internal battery or a good quality case charger (ie that can protect the phone from drops)
E) Video Calling: I see there is a function for making video call and then showing what is on the phoneís screen. However, is this only between two Blackberry 10 users, or can I for example have a video call with someone having an iphone using the default program, and still show them pictures / files on my cell phone? Do I need Skype when it comes out? If so, why, what are the limitations with the phone built in Video calling. Is it cross interface able?
F) How well will the Blackberry connect with Yahoo email? Should I be installing Outlook on my computer, have it connect to yahoo email, and connect it via outlook to my phone? I herd the battery works good with synching through Outlook, but how about through yahoo? Should I set the email every minute, or will this have a big impact on battery, and thus is it really beneficiary to go to 30 minutes interval?
G) Multitasking: Can I have screen split such as with Samsung S3, where I can have say internet browser on top, and gps or music player on bottom? Can I play movie in the back (ie movie doesnít pause), and say check my mail / browse internet? If not, can I at least do it with music and internet browsing?
H) I want a nice heavy duty casing. I know ballistic makes some, however, their offering doest have a holster, which I would need, as I donít want the phone in my pocket. Perhaps there are holsters that I can use with the Ballistic case, not sure where to look or try though. As Blackberry 10 is a very gesture phone, choosing the right heavy duty casing is crucial. I saw one from Otterbox, but it seems to be getting bad reviews because of the limitation of gestures and the holster not holding the phone properly on their own website. Not sure if there is anything else coming out in time, and if I should be looking into ebay. I didnít really like the ones I saw on this site, sorry, though maybe I missed one.
I) Is there an app for checking cheap gas price locations?
J) How is the interface for transferring music / movies from my computer to the phone? I think it is not like the Samsung S3 which you can simply connect and treat it like a hard drive right? It is more like iphone, where you need a dedicated software. Is it easy? Does it work well? Can you make separate files for Music files?
I guess I still need some convincing why Blackberry 10 vs Samsung S3 and Iphone 5, so pls help me with this decision, and why you think Blackberry 10 will be great for me, or how it will not be, and which one will be, and why.
Thanks in advance to all.
- 02-27-13, 01:18 AM #2
I'll just make a quick reply to say that this z10 is my first smartphone as well, and I've really had no issues with any "Learning Curve". For the most part I've found most things very intuitive and very easy to grasp.
For the one or two things that I wasn't able to figure out on my own in a few minutes, a polite question asked here has quickly taken care of it.
Just as a caveat though, I had bought my daughter a playbook for Christmas, so I felt familiar with some aspects of the phone once I got it in my hand.
Posted via CB10
- CrackBerry Addict
02-27-13, 08:13 AM #3
- 553 Posts
My first "smartphone" too. A couple answers..
C) One year warranty at Telus, bring it in for repair replace.
D) bought the battery/charger combo just in case. Handy for my Playbook too.
H) the phone vibrated out of my holster (turned sideways) and fell on the greenhouse floor, landed face down and got stepped on. No damage except the screen protector has some scratches.
J) Let's see. BB Link will transfer multimedia stuff via wifi or USB, the phone also automatically connected with my wifi network and becomes another network drive in windows, it also has USB mass storage mode.
- 02-27-13, 08:41 AM #5
Lots of questions! tonnes of answers across this site but I'll try and put in my two cents - hopefully it helps you out a little.
1) Call quality - fine for me, wouldn't say it's a massive noticeable difference from my other phones, but it's good.
2) Messaging - texting,sms, bbm all work really well. Great ability to "share" any website/pic immediately from anywhere on the phone. See a pic? hit menu and then "share"
3) Checking my Yahoo email - you can set this up to sync as I've done with my gmail/hotmail accts. The phone checks the accounts for me and the emails appear automatically.
4) Camera (so I don’t have to carry a real one with me at times) - love love love the camera. Was at the Rogers Center on Sat and took tonnes of pics and video's. Great quality, my buddy was mad cuz the iphone5 doesn't let you zoom while taking a video but the z10 does.
5) Internet Browsing and GPS when walking - fantastic if you've got lte, no issues with either for me. i use while driving almost daily (gps)
6) Listening to Music (movies is not as crucial, but of course nice) - music is important to me aswell. software could be tweaked but it does the trick. 16gig phone can always be expanded with a memory card.
7) Good Battery - gets me through the day. as suggested in a few other forum posts, it's good to work the battery in by charging and letting it fully drain a few times first.
8) Apps? Don’t know much about, but checking for cheap gas price might be nice. - decent selection of apps. big complaints about no whatsapp or instagram right now but they will be here at some point. alot of other potential to sideload android apps on this device (i've installed skype)..again lots of posts on this too.
A) if you haven't used other smart phones the gestures are pretty intuitive so you may not have as big a learning curve as others.
B)I'm also on rogers - its fine for me, no dropped calls, no static, no issues
C) Rogers gives the 1 yr warranty, but they may nto always swap it out right, depends on where you get it from, some may offer to send it for repair thus leaving you without a phone. I usually buy direct from rogers head office, they courier it to you and if there's an issue they mail you a new one and ask for the old one back .
D) can't answer this one but I know crackberry.com sells a separate battery that can be charged by itself if you get the case with it. the advantage with it is that it can be connected via your micro usb so you can keep doing what your doing and are now using two batteries. versus having to find somewhere to plug your device in.
E) bbm video requires the other party to have the updated bbm software on their phone. so it depends on who you wnat to talk to. there are other apps available that do video conferencing and skype is ssaid to be in the works. the video sharing that you've mentioned is only bbm video to bbm video.
F) if you walk through the setup correctly your yahoo should work like a charm. as i mentioned it should all sync wireless on the go. no need for the middle step you've mentioned. i've also got my calender being synced from gmail instantly. it's really easy to walk through the setup once you get the device.
G) yes you can multi task and it's great. No, technically the screen can't be split where you only see two windows. but the design of the peak and flow makes moving between windows lightning quick. there is no need to hit the home button, find another app, open it, then hit home and go back to the other app. the swipe allows you to go directly from app to app skipping the middle step. yes to your movie and music question, i have them running all the time. especially my podcasts.
H) can't speak about cases, i love the design of the phone and don't want to hide it lol.
I) never looked for a gas price app
J) blackberry introduced link as it's desktop software to back up and sync videos/pics/music with the device. as another member mentioned you can set everything up to sync wireless. Personally i don't like the Link software at all, it's terrible in my opinion. The advantage is that you don't need to use it, i simple copy and past files via windows explorer - do this for music, videos and pics.
at the end of the day it's a personal choice based on what you're going to be using it for and how it feels in your hand. I like the bb casing, the iphone5 really feels like it's always going to slip out of my hand. the black z10 back cover is really really nice. I think iphone5's are great devices but to see their true advantage you have to be in their ecosystem (again my opinion) - so i decided against that. Samsungs are also really great phones but I was turned off by the number of diff android os versions and it felt fragmented to me. Again just my opinion...the z10 was the perfect fit for me. You can sideload apps, copy and paste data without having to use itunes etc, it's got expandable memory and the hardware is great.
It's a great start for the device and with some software/feature upgrades i'm sure it's only going to continue to get better.
-oh and if batteries, extended batteries etc are a concern for you, i'd assume you're leaning away from iphone's since they can't be removed easily.
- 02-27-13, 08:46 AM #6
I should also add from the 65 pics I took sat. I was able to edit them on the device. Also made a video using story maker software which comes with it. The video turned out great and and also let's u pic back ground music. I then dragged and dropped the pics into a diff folder on the phone to keep everything sorted. Again all while on the device.
Came home and then using dlna with my smart to I was able to start a slide show nor the pics I took right on the tv with no wires or set up needed. Pretty powerful stuff.
Posted via CB10 on my Z10 Oreo
- CrackBerry Abuser
02-27-13, 08:53 AM #7
- 158 Posts
The Z10 is my third 'smart' phone, although my first Nokia smart-phone felt anything but. My uses of the Z10 sound fairly similar to yours, basicaly (in order of use)
Surf the web
News applications (le pariesien, le monde, the globe and mail)
Coming from Android, where I was doing almost the exact same, the device is just so much easier to use. I think the above is the real sweet-spot for what this device can do... and as the apps keep coming those who really need/like having apps will be better and better supported.
edit: I've been slowly doing more BBM as well. It is completely new to me and have added 5 people since I got the device. Those people I BBM instead of texting.
Last edited by dmacne; 02-27-13 at 08:54 AM. Reason: BBM
Hi, thanks for the further comments, pls keep them coming.
So a good thing from your post i learned about the Z10 is that i can simply connect to computer without the software and drag and drop my music and videos, that is fantastic!!! So similar to Samsung then.
B1) About the video chat, not knowing anyone else that has a Z10, i have to wait for Skype to come out? I think this cant be transferred via android yet if i am correct.
Comment: On the iphone battery, if i go that route, i would get the morphi battery case, thus should be ok. If I go Samsung, i know they have extended batteries. As for slipperiness, i plan to get a case no matter what (that is my current thinking anyways), so this wont be an issue in the choice, but I do agree that I the casing of the blackberry is better than the one from Samsung.
Comment: As for looks, i really wish they had done a real white Z10, not one with the black "cover" around the screen. The white Q10 looks amazing on the other hand, ALL white. But the Q10 is for business, as they lose screen space for watching movies and taking pics... too bad. Guess black it is though, looks classy enough.
B2) The question about service is actually directed at Blackberry. After the 1 year warranty with phone company, in my case Rogers, i want to know what are the details on if i have problem with the phone. Does blackberry send you a new phone (which may be refurbished), charge you for it, and refund you when they get the old phone from you? Wandering the same thing about samsung too actually. I have never had to do this with my nokia flip phones, but i can imagine the new technology not holding up as well for all manufacturers, though i could be wrong. It is good to know though that if I get from Rogers head office, I would have gotten a better deal for returns.
B3) Also, so its confirmed here that if i play a movie, it will keep playing while i go surf the net or check my mail, right?
B4) About BBM, its simply a messaging system right, so i can send to any user even if they dont have a blackberry?
B5) Important: Does anyone know if Blackberry will let you download new OS as they come along for this device, so I can feel up to date for the 3 years contract? I know windows screwed everyone who had Windows 7 to going to windows 8, so I don’t want that. I know both Iphones and Android will let you upgrade so that is nice.
B6) The question on synching phone with Yahoo or rather outlook was for a battery charge holding longer only, as I did know you can do it with Yahoo directly. Would anyone know if I would lose more battery power synching from Yahoo directly my emails, vrs say Outlook?
B7) Which GPS software do you use for walking, and which one for driving, on the Z10? I heard the stock one isn’t good.
B8) Is there a Holster that is adaptable to different size phone cases?
Thanks in advance, and sorry for the flood of questions.
- 02-27-13, 01:43 PM #9
Hopefully some of the info provides a little insight. SO! getting down to the questions =)
-Drag and drop is really easy...did it again today. The device and SD card show as two separate drives on my laptop.
B1) Video chat isn't limited to the Z10 but it is restricted to those on Blackberry with BB10 software. Your'e correct about Skype. I did sideload the android app and it wouldn't connect to the skyp server. With that said there are other really good apps. One being Ovoo (spelling?). Similar to skype but allows more people to conference in, also works in mobile mode or with mobile apps. So you could be using your phone and chat to someone on their web browser.
Comments: - looks like the battery situation will be similar across platforms for you, with each having solutions to extend the battery life
Comments: - I purchase the white and agree with the aesthetics. Wish it was all white entirely but I do realize that the black 'cover' around the screen is actually the bezel. It's crucial to functionality of the phone and is the reason why it doesn't have buttons. But it doesn't look pretty - I agree.
B2) I've had about 8 blackberry's I think...only reason I say that is I've busted a few along the way and never had the option of contacting blackberry directly. Neither has anyone I know. Don't think that's an option to be honest, as they don't have stores yet and they only provide high level tech support. So outside of 1 year if the phone stops working contacting them wont' be an option. Rogers does however offer discounts on refurb bb's to those still in a contract. Ie you have 2 yrs left and your phone doesn't work. I've used that program from ROgers before...not the most ideal situation but it's something.
I used to work at rogers and recall sending damaged bb's to a rogers certified repair center...not BB. Prob not what you were hoping for....
B3) My bad...I stand corrected. I just checked this with a few videos and they pause...I could've sworn they kept playing. So using the video app the movie will pause if you navigate away. using the browser (ie youtube, online movie) though they will continue to play.
B4) BBM is restricted only blackberry devices. Doesn't matter how old or new but it's gotta be a bb. the upside is that it's pretty much free and no extra costs for bbm'ing people internationally (which I do all the time for family)
B5) os updates (playbook included) have always been free. I guess it could change going forward but don't see why it would. Youc an browse their website and see that they have all of their operating system files and updates available to users for free. So that's a plus...the hardware is amazing so as they make changes we'll all be getting free updates (hopefully over the air). The potential with this one is what excites me.
B6) I'll leave for someone else..lots of battery pro's here lol.
B7) I sideloaded google navigation (Good e-Reader - Your online destination for e-reader, Digital Publishing and Tablet PC News) it has a drop down menu to toggle between driving/walking and biking. It may have bugs but i've used it daily and i love it. Gives me traffic (401 is sometimes a nightmare), satelite view and turn by turn pictures of street corners.
B8) Sorry, no idea.
Np...hopefully some of this helps a bit.
- 02-27-13, 04:38 PM #12
Date of Z10 purchase: Feb 5th
Coming from: BB Torch 9800
Service Provider: Rogers (LTE)
Use of phone: Toronto
1. Call quality is outstanding. Callers voices seem to sound digital now? Reception/ Signal Strength is great in places where I used to have extreme difficulties.
2. I think you would have a hard time finding a phone that handles messaging any better. I've compared this with friends and workers who have high end phones for the past few weeks.
3. Not sure about Yahoo, but my Hotmail synced up with no issues.
4. Camera and Video - love it!
5. Browser speed if lightning fast. Only noticed a bit of slow down in a subway station. Can not see any difference while walking around city.
6. Music definitely sounds better on headphones that are not provided in the packaging. You will love the sound card with the right equipment.
7. Not impressed with the battery for the first two days. After taking advice from a CrackBerry thread, it performed well. (charge battery completly and let it die completly. Do this three times)
8.Coming from a torch, I was not used to exploring many apps to begin with. It's already exciting to see so many different apps in Blackberry World. It's obvious they have a long way to go, but it looks promising for sure. I believe there are a few gas price ones for you also.
Well, I can honestly say that the Z10 was easy to learn and a joy to use. There are a few things they have to address with a simple update, but that can be expected from a brand new phone / operating system. Good Luck with your choice.
Posted via CB10
Last edited by xBURK; 02-27-13 at 05:45 PM.
- 02-27-13, 04:40 PM #13
A) Like Windows Phone, Android, iOS, Blackberry has it's own User Navigation Experience that is unique. It's a no button, swipe (from the edge) paradigm. I encourage you to go to Best Buy, or Futureshop, or Rogers (or other carrier) and play with a live Z10 phone to get a feel for the UI.
B) I am on Rogers, and call quality (in Toronto) is excellent. I've used the phone a lot, never an issue. Don't know if that's all Blackberry or a combo of Blackberry/Rogers but it's fantastic.
C) Don't know. Blackberry does not have an Apple store, that is an obvious advantage. Instead, you'd likely have to go through Rogers for replacement.
D) Don't know, but my thot is getting a third party extended battery is a dicey proposition, and could wreck the phone. I have a second battery with the charger accessory. It's small, credit card sized and excellent. So far, I've only had to use it once (first week or so when the battery was learning and I was using the phone heavily). But it's great, you don't even have to swap out the battery, just plug the charger (with charged battery in case) into micro-USB and it pulls from the second battery and recharges. I even used it to text one handed while plugged in.
E) Video calling with Blackberry (the built in app) will only work on other Blackberry devices (through BBM I believe). There are other third party apps but don't have them, so not sure if they are cross platform. TO the best of my knowlege, Facetime in iPhone only works with other Apple products (iphone, ipad) as well. Switched from iPhone, but never used Facetime...
F) Don't have Yahoo Mail, but it works great with Gmail, Mail.com, my private service provider (not Rogers). My phone polls multiple accounts through push, no issues with battery I've noticed.
G) No split screen option as in Samsung S3. Closest would be "sharing" in BBM, but the other person would have to be on BBM as well. Don't know how split screen works on Samsung, if it's cross platform capable. But I think you'd want a larger phone (or tablet) to use a split screen feature. Multitasking on the Blackberry is fantastic; it's the only OS that truly (in the technical sense) multitasks. You can have up to eight Apps running simultaneously and switch quickly between them. Though, this would be a drain on the battery.
H) I have the flip cover, and like it but a lot of people swear by the Transform Hard Shell: BlackBerry Transform Hard Shell (ACC-49533-101) for Z10 | BlackBerry Cases
I) Not yet (that I have seen). GasBuddy is most likely coming (it's available on pre-BB10 Blackberries). For now, you'd have to use m.gasbuddy.com on your browser.
J) There are many ways to do this. You can set up the Z10 to show up as a drive letter in Windows, either wirelessly or through a USB connection. You can set it up for media sharing as well through DLNA. You have the option of having it sync with iTunes, or you can drag and drop through Windows File Explorer. Blackberry Link software is not the best imho, but I'll give them time to improve on it. I personally use file explorer in windows and drag and drop, I find that easieest.
Best bet is to continue to talk to friends and play with their phones. See what suits you the best. But take your time with each device, don't just use it for five minutes. I'm a former iPhone user (had a 3G, and 4S). Also have a playbook and an Asus (android) Transformer Tablet. I got sold on the Swipe experience when I picked up a cheap playbook and am completely happy with my Z10.
I also recommend if you try out all the phones, to try out the touch keyboard interface on all of them. Blackberry's new touchscreen keyboard incorporates a robust 'word suggestion' method that places the words over the keys and you swipe up to insert a word if you want. That's probably, for me, the biggest selling point for the average user. It's great, and I expect Apple and Android to come up with their own similar solution as it's just fantastic to use (for me).
Anyway, good luck!
- 02-27-13, 04:45 PM #14
Last edited by Gnomesane; 02-27-13 at 05:14 PM.
- 02-27-13, 05:07 PM #15
B1) Official word is that Microsoft is releasing Skype for BB10, an Android port I believe. Best guess is around mid-March when phone releases in US, but no firm date. But apparently, it's definitely coming.
B2) Blackberry has a toll free customer support number. I'd just call them (1-877-255-2377) and see if they'll answer your question. Can't hurt, what's the worst that could happen?
B3) Not sure why you'd want to do that but hey... Uh, I just tried it and when I minimized the video player, it paused. There may be a way to have it play on in the background, not sure.
B4) No, BBM is only for other Blackberry users. For other messaging, you'd have to use SMS, MMS, WhatsApp (coming as an Android port, probably March), uh, Facebook, etc... BBM is not simply messaging, you can now "share" screens between other BB10 users (useful for remote support, sharing a document, etc etc etc). Actually, a great feature, but again, only between Blackberry users. There's been a push to make BBM cross platform but no commitment from Blackberry as yet (or maybe ever).
B5) Too soon to say. But most likely no worse than Android or Apple. I got an iPhone 4S so I was able to get the full iOS 6.x updates. A friend, with an iPhone 4, could not, only a partial update. By the time iOS7 releases, I expect my backup 4S will not be 'entitled' to a full upgrade, and my iPhone 4 friend user will most likely be 99% screwed... Apple would not support a full update as the CPU (I think) couldn't handle it? Android, mileage is more varied. I know that Asus will not release Jelly Bean for my TF101. I got around it by rooting the Tablet and updating a hack version from TeamEOS, which works great. Blackberry CEO Thorsten Heins has committed to updating the old BB Playbook to Blackberry OS 10, so that's a hopeful sign that Blackberry will support multiple future OS updates. BUT, like any other company, they are in the business of selling phones so I wouldn't imagine that you'd be able to get indefinite upgrades. Part of the whole planned obsolescence thing... But given that Blackberry is in the process of re-establishing themselves in the market, I'd expect them to be more responsive than Windows, Android or Apple. But I'm guessing.
B7) Built in GPS, nothing for walking. Blackberry Maps for driving. Not as pretty as Google Maps, or as full featured yet, =), but accurate and elegant imho. You CAN sideload Google Maps, I did so, works fine without issue but I'm personally pissed off that Google didn't release a native app for BB10 so I don't use it. But fyi, you do have the option of Google Maps (sideload, easy to do).
Again, good luck!
thanks everyone for all the answers, i really appreciated it. I have made up my mind, i will take the chance and go with Blackberry for me, cause i want to be different and the device seems inovative enough and i like the keyboard / touch / browsing / hub, and iphone 5 for my wife, cause all her it will be easy and she will have full support from the apple store to teach her everything, and basically, this will give us both worlds, efficiency and apps.
Now, i saw it was mentioned to discharge the battery 3 times completely. Thank you, i am reading mixed answers, and its bothering me. I will go this route on both phones. How many hours should i first charge the two phones when i receive them? After draining them completely, how many hours should i recharge them for, and does the device have to stay off for these 3 times i am doing this? On future recharge, can my device stay on sleep mode, or do i have to turn it off each time?
- CrackBerry Addict
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