01-02-11 03:24 PM
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  1. gabedabomb's Avatar
    Hello all. I am a new, first time smartphone user. I didn't intend to become a smartphone user this past Thanksgiving, but I did. If I hadn't left my trusty RAZR V3XX by the sink that night, I wouldn't be typing this right now. Alas, it drowned, and here I am posting with my Blackberry Torch. Tonight I came up with the idea that I wanted to see a blinking light for missed calls, realized that's not possible via the stock setup, and found the BeBuzz app. Also, I got sick of the BB Maps ribbon disappearing (I'm AT&T), and found the launcher on this forum, and all is good. Just another great day with the Torch, but let me start at the beginning.

    The Beginning:

    I'm in the corporate world and have always been more or less aware of BBs, though I've never had or wanted one; never cared to be tethered to my emails (my view has since changed 180.). When the iPhone came out I saw the touchscreen, thought "how am I supposed to make calls on this thing easily," and carried on with my life. As the years passed I never felt the need for a smartphone; in fact, I relished being old school, and not being a BB/iPhone user that's always connected.

    When my friend showed off his Android Nexus to me earlier this year, what with the maps and Pandora, a seed was planted. The turning point in my thinking happened several months ago, when a classmate and I went to a conference; being connected was of utmost importance, and I had to rely on his Droid to carry us through (namely, to check my email. The RAZR was passable but only for emergencies). It was the first time I felt that I wished I had a smartphone.

    The AT&T store - Choosing a smartphone:

    So the RAZR drowned (by negligence, although my mourning was curt) and I needed a phone bad. I walked into the store aware of the iPhone 4, Android devices, and Windows 7. I ruled out Apple out-of-hand as I don't want my life restricted to iTunes. I picked up the three other touchscreens, an Android, a Windows 7, and the Torch. I was completely oblivious and hadn't read up on them at all, so I figured I'd play around on them until I figured something out. The next 90 minutes is but mostly a blur in my memory. I mostly played with the touch screens (the other two were TS only), not paying mind much to the keyboard. I remember being frustrated at the Bing default on the Windows phone (I'm a Googler), and was impressed by BB's universal search (which I wouldn't fully appreciate till later). I also recall reading how W7 jumbles one's FB contacts and photos, so that's out). I knew that Android is all the rage, and to my untrained eye the Android and the BB both had icons.

    The turn:

    As my (and probably the salesgirl's and my dad's) wore thin I had to make a choice. Coming from a basic phone, I downplayed both phones' attributes and use the litmus test that I knew best. I was afterall getting a PHONE. My final decision came down to this: which phone would it be easier to make a call on? The Android required me to press on a phone icon. The Torch has a physical talk and end buttons. I chose the Torch and boy am I glad.

    The Discovery:

    I hope that Kevin reads this as he pondered how a brand new smartphone user would take to the Torch. In short, very well! As I got home and played around with the thing, I was amazed at how easily I figured it out. Being a heavy Excel and PC user I'm all about touch typing and shortcuts, and I felt instantly at home on the Torch. To me, it's a mini PC. My hands flew around the keyboard, the screen, the trackpad; I was a happy camper with the (to me) intuitive menus and "double menus". I never once stopped to read the instructions; I learned with my fingers. As I caught myself up on the past year's development, I learned about the Torch launch, the initial disappointments, the bad reviews and RIM bashing, the drop in RIMM, and I thought, "travesty to all that!" I am honored to have my first smartphone experience be the Torch, and if I were a RIM marketer I would've branded the Torch as the best first smartphone for a PC user (which is pretty much all non-smartphone users). The Torch is that user friendly. I read about reviewers who dismiss the trackpad as redundant and shake my head. They just don't get it or they just haven't taken the time to look past its skin (hardware specs). The Torch is great in all its nuances. For example, it was panned for not having a "next msg" icon. I figured out that I could swipe the screen to move from one msg to another; even better! To top it off, you can't do that on the iPhone 4! And that's supposed to be the holy grail?!?

    And Bam, Bam, Bam! I kept discovering: Universal Search! The keyboard! The notification light! The camera, photo viewer, the mp3 player (I don't have an iPod and this helps). The maps, BB traffic, PUSH email + integrated inbox, and BBM! I love this!! stock quotes, NBA scoreboard, Dilbert app with 20 years of comics at my fingertips...and I'm able to do the 200MB plan since wifi is everywhere. At the core what I need is to make phone calls and it's been great for that (visual voicemail and a host of improvements from the RAZR). Next, Maps (BB for quick load, Goog for traffic overlays) and quick directly lookups are very nice to have. I'll get to the heart of BB (emails) in the wrapup, but the Torch has met and exceeded all the expectations that I didn't have, and much much more.

    Postscript:

    As the excitement died down (after getting two Pods for home and work...so glad that I stuck with grey to match and buying a bit of RIMM), I revisited my core pushback to having a smartphone and my 180 change in attitude since: my idea/fear of being tethered to and being a slave to email. That reasoning, now that I am enlightened, was completely unfounded (note: my BB is for home and school only and no work email is sent here, thank goodness, so for my coworkers that are tethered to The Man things might be different, though now I wouldn't mind too much when I do get to a stage where I need to use BB for work).

    THE TORCH SAVES TIME ON EMAIL!

    Here's why. In my prior life, email meant logging onto Hotmail and school email and Gmail several times a day (I had Thunderbird but due to me leaving everything in inbox that bogged, so I went back to online). "Empty trips" was normal, and of course I didn't mind surfing the web a bit while I was at it. To me, the institution of email was tied to the web and that equated time wasting, and since smartphone equals email, my logic set smartphone = waste of time. I couldn't have been more wrong. Today, email goes like this. Periodically (I turned off LED notification) I unlock the phone. No msg? Great, carry on (as great as Webkit is, I don't have the urge to subsequently surf the web or to play with my apps, a refreshing change of behavior to my PC email habits). You guys aren't kidding when you say BB = work, all others ~ toys! "Empty trips" are now 3 seconds and not 3 - 30 minutes. And since I prefer to keep 3 email addys, the one inbox (+SMS and VM) is great. I literally find myself feeling LESS tethered to and having more freedom from the internet than I ever did, a huge surprise. My biggest fear of smartphones has been overcome and my life is and will continue to be better for it. Don't change a thing, BB (you know what I mean). Torch!

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    Last edited by gabedabomb; 01-01-11 at 06:51 PM.
    Cozmik, Andy357, ShoshiOne and 6 others like this.
    12-31-10 12:36 AM
  2. luqman24's Avatar
    First thought even though I haven't read this, can you write my next essay for me

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    12-31-10 12:38 AM
  3. gabedabomb's Avatar
    As long as the topic is "Reflections of a 29-year old Late Adopter of Technology and the Virtues of a Canadian Company," sure

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    12-31-10 12:56 AM
  4. Shadow_S2K's Avatar
    Props for typing all of that on your Torch!
    12-31-10 02:34 AM
  5. luqman24's Avatar
    Just copied and pasted all that onto Word to Go and it stopped at "Postscript:". What a fail eh lol. Btw the word count until "Postscript:" is 1011 words. Amazing you've typed all that on your torch lol.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    12-31-10 02:43 AM
  6. gabedabomb's Avatar
    The whole thing pastes into Memo Pad . It was good to get it all out there and also to work on typing on this keyboard (I can type ~80 WPM on a regular keyboard thanks to AIM growing up so the QWERTY is very familiar).

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    12-31-10 02:56 AM
  7. Shadow_S2K's Avatar
    How long did it take you to complete this mini essay?
    12-31-10 03:09 AM
  8. gabedabomb's Avatar
    Not sure, probably 1.5 - 2 hrs max, maybe less. I just kept typing, so averaged probably 15 WPM overall. It was nice since I had all of these thoughts built up and it forced my thumbs to keep up, great practice really. If I was on the computer I probably would've written even more :P
    12-31-10 04:02 AM
  9. jessassej's Avatar
    Very nice, and I totally agree with everything you said! I feel you!

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    12-31-10 06:15 AM
  10. Chrisy's Avatar
    Interesting post, good info. Thanks.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    12-31-10 06:21 AM
  11. skwij's Avatar
    Awesome post, awesome writing!

    Welcome.
    12-31-10 07:38 AM
  12. Cozmik's Avatar
    Very well put. Clear, concise and discusses the virtues of the Torch, without feeling the need to bash other phones. Refreshing. Thank you.
    12-31-10 08:08 AM
  13. gunston's Avatar
    I'm thinking tocswitch back from i4

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    12-31-10 09:35 AM
  14. JeePak's Avatar
    Hmm, buying some RIMM...not a bad idea.. Especially before the playbook comes out...

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    12-31-10 10:28 AM
  15. ShoshiOne's Avatar
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts! It was very refreshing to hear how you came to the Torch and what you thought. So Welcome! and hope to see you around here more!

    And I agree with luqman24...if you ever want to help with an essay of mine....
    12-31-10 11:49 AM
  16. sleepngbear's Avatar
    ...how a brand new smartphone user would take to the Torch. In short, very well! As I got home and played around with the thing, I was amazed at how easily I figured it out. Being a heavy Excel and PC user I'm all about touch typing and shortcuts, and I felt instantly at home on the Torch.
    See, here's one of those intangibles that's kinda difficult to throw out there in a 'which phone is best' argument. (Yes, yes, I know, there's no 'best' phone, it's all about what works best for each individual, yadda, yadda, yadda.) The point is, it was probably the concept of ease-of-use that hooked me on BB's in the first place.

    My first BB was a Curve, because I wanted to be able to sync my company calendar on my phone, and BB was the only device my company would do that with. The phone was simply very usable, easy to learn, and it fit my needs perfectly. When it was time to upgrade, going to the Bold was a no-brainer. Then the Torch came out right about the time my contract was up on the Bold. After a lot of hemming and hawing, playing and fidgeting, and evaluating all available options, the Torch won the pro's/con's test. After a very short time with it, I found the new touch screen interface was as easy to learn, and the device as a whole as simply usable, functional and reliable as that first Curve was, only better. I can fuss with it if I want to, but I don't have to. It just works and I love it.

    Anyway, great post ... very informative coming from a new BB-user's perspective.
    12-31-10 12:01 PM
  17. claudiapuccio's Avatar
    Very well written!
    12-31-10 12:10 PM
  18. kkfasho#CB's Avatar
    *5 fives* Torch is my first smartphone experience too!
    01-01-11 12:49 AM
  19. gabedabomb's Avatar
    Congrats! Happy New Year!!
    01-01-11 01:40 AM
  20. Matrix Leader's Avatar
    Congratulations Enjoy your new smartphone
    01-01-11 02:09 AM
  21. jaxterz's Avatar
    That was a very good read! You need to become an author!
    01-01-11 09:50 AM
  22. Daniel Ratcliffe's Avatar
    Minus paragraphing (but I can understand you just had ideas flowing through your head), that was a very interesting read. Good to hear what it's like. I opted for the BlackBerry Curve because I was following the hype with all my friends having one (well most, I have 75 BBM contacts, all people from school/uni).

    However, I found out the real productivity of BlackBerry as time passed. If you do a lot of basic presentations, I'd head for a BlackBerry Presenter. I have, and alhtough it's a tad slow and clunky, it's light, and quite refreshing to use actually. I personally am looking forward to explaining the difficulties autism causes me on a day to day basis (I suffer from Asperger's Syndrome), using a presentation that will be streamed through the BlackBerry Presenter and my Curve.

    Good read though, nice to know that RIM is still picking up new users, and people are seeing the advantages over iPhone/Android.
    01-01-11 11:52 AM
  23. reginald_1986's Avatar
    Wow! First of all, Happy New Year!

    Okay, reading this, I really wish I did buy a Torch! The next Torch coming out and I am definitely getting a Torch! Thanks
    01-01-11 11:57 AM
  24. gabedabomb's Avatar
    Minus paragraphing (but I can understand you just had ideas flowing through your head), that was a very interesting read.
    ...
    Good read though, nice to know that RIM is still picking up new users, and people are seeing the advantages over iPhone/Android.
    I fixed some of the paragraphong so I hope it's better. Also this post comes up on the first page when I google "new/first time smartphone user torch"...spreading the word!!

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    01-01-11 01:46 PM
  25. Yasmeenabeena's Avatar
    Loved this! I, too love my Torch. I will definitely consider it for my next essay in English. Looking forward to getting to know all of you. Happy New Year, BTW.
    01-01-11 07:47 PM
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