07-19-10 04:09 PM
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  1. nycchick's Avatar
    Apologies for the long post ...

    I will be purchasing my very first Blackberry within the next couple of days. Any input is greatly appreciated!

    I've had a Motorola v600 for the past 5-6 years. (I can hear your jaws dropping and hitting the keyboard). This should indicate many things. I only need and use a phone for the basics. Of course, when it comes down to it I will consider the things I don't need yet would certainly enjoy. I want a phone that will be durable and last for some time.


    Here are some things that are set in stone for me:

    - ATT is and will be my carrier, has been forever and never had any problems.
    - I want GSM ( I think that is a given being that I'm with ATT?)
    - I want a full keyboard and a trackpad (not trackball). No touch keyboard.


    Here are my concerns and considerations:
    - I want a phone primarily for the basics. For voice plan ($40 a month) and for texting. I do not text a lot but it does come in handy and something I do use. Do I need a data plan to text?

    - I may or may not start off with a data plan. If I do, it will be the low $15 a month.

    - I do want a phone that I can use overseas with little problems as possible. In the coming two years I will be overseas off and on. I won't desperately or urgently need phone use, but do want to have it easily available to me when traveling.

    Here is the most concern I have:
    -As a long time ATT customer I am eligible for an upgrade. I could purchase a 9700 for $215.

    - It is unclear to me as to whether I would be locked into a contract if I accept the upgrade.

    - Even if I am NOT locked into a contract by accepting a phone upgrade - by purchasing an upgrade Blackberry through ATT (and not an outright unlocked, retail price Blackberry) does that mean I am expected and restricted to using a ATT SIM card only?

    - I do not foresee changing my carrier so I technically shouldn't have an issue with a locked ATT Blackberry. But I do feel at ease with the freedom of an unlocked phone, and a phone that will accept SIM cards when I am in the position to temporarily replace it (traveling etc).

    - The following question may be counterintuitive --- Are there any draw backs to an unlocked phone? Do phones with a specified/delegated carrier have less problems, and work more smoothly?


    Note: I generally do not mind paying full retail, so long as the phone will give me little problems, provide what I am looking for and will last for at least 3+ years. I paid $300 for the Motorola v600, so if it came down to it, I'd pay upwards of that for a Blackberry.

    I've been eyeing the Bold 9700. But have glanced at the Curve 85xx. I understand a new 9800 is expected to be released fairly soon. I am not interested in it, but if I wait for it to be released will the Bold 9700 drop in retail price?

    Lastly, If anyone can give me a run down of what WiFi is compared to 3G. Actually it's the 3G I am more unclear about. I remember seeing discussed somewhere how 9700 automatically connects to 3G as opposed to 2G Network and how it was better to be connected to 2G for some reason etc? Does the 3G have anything to do with providing texting capabilities? Or is that only the case when texting/sending photos, files etc?


    Thank you for your help!
    06-17-10 08:28 AM
  2. tandaina's Avatar
    The 2G or 3G are for your data plan, so if you don't get one I believe that's a moot question. 3G is faster than 2G.

    For what you want you MIGHT want to consider Sprint, which is what I'm moving too, just because they offer an everything plan (450 minutes a month, unlimited data and texting) for about what you'll be paying AT&T for voice and $15 worth of data. Just a thought. That owuld put you on the 9650 which is slightly larger than the 9700 but in all other ways comparable (just more memory, a good thing).

    I'm also moving ot BB for the first time. Did a metric ton of research and came down to Sprint and the 9650 being best for me.

    (I wanted a good phone, to text, and I want to add the crazy idea of being able to get my email anywhere, so sounds like I"m not too far off needs wise from where you are.)
    06-17-10 08:42 AM
  3. morales0416's Avatar
    Hi


    Nice position to be in!

    I believe I could be wrong ATT now requires all Smart Phones to have either the $15 200mb plan which is really hard to come by on a blackberry or the $25 2gb. I dont think you can get a smart phone without either of those plans.


    If you accept the 215 deal you will get locked into a new Two Year Agreement.

    Buy purchasing an Unlocked phone you will be paying more for a device but have the option of using it on multiple GSM carriers worldwide, just pop in the local sim and your good to go!


    and as far as wifi is concerned to 3G wifi depending on what carrier is providing and the router is much faster then 3G

    3g speeds on ATT are 1.3mbps- 7.2mbps where as WIFI you "can" get theoretical speeds of 54.mbps to 108 with speed boost Technology.

    But 3g speeds on a phone will be fine for just browsing,


    Sorry if I missed anything just let me know if can help anymore or if I missed anything
    06-17-10 08:45 AM
  4. sedalia066's Avatar
    ATT requires a data plan on all their new smartphones I believe. BB is included in that these days so $15 will be the lowest plan.

    You might consider buying a 9000 on E-Bay or Craigslist. The phone is a good one and going for $150-200 these days in the used and good condition market. That allows you to wait for the 9800 or other phone later.

    Any upgrade discounted phone will mean a new contract. Last week we got a Curve 8900 for the teen. The retail cost at the time for a new 9700 was about $400 and above what we wanted to pay. As longtime ATT customers were are not leaving the company in the foreseeable future so a contract was fine.

    Unlocking is a simple process. As longtime ATT customers we were given the codes for a phone going to UK this summer. No questions, no problems, free.
    06-17-10 10:44 AM
  5. MrObvious's Avatar
    Yeah get off AT&T. They are expensive and you don't get what you pay for. Just ask any iPhone user in SF/NYC. Verizon at least gives you a network you can use. That said I agree with the guy recommending Sprint. Heck, T-Mobile is as a valid option as Sprint assuming they have towers, plus they are cheaper and GSM.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    06-17-10 11:36 AM
  6. MissJennell#IM's Avatar
    Why do you want gsm so bad?
    06-17-10 12:29 PM
  7. wndrshwzn's Avatar
    lol att is horrible. if it wasnt for the iphone-no one would care about em. vzw is waayy overpriced. tmo has the 9700 which is older than the 9650.
    my quasi-professional opinion-go with sprint
    06-17-10 12:37 PM
  8. nycchick's Avatar
    Thanks for the help so far.

    As for choosing a carrier. I have that set in stone, so that's not really the advice I'm seeking. I've never had a problem with ATT, not in the slightest. So there is no reason for me to switch. And to respond to the cost of carriers I get a decent 16% that saves me a few bucks a month. And no point in changing to a carrier that is cheaper but may give me issues. I'm sticking with ATT.

    Back on topic -

    Wanting GSM is sort of a moot point. ATT is GSM from what I know? But to answer the question, I believe it's more convenient when traveling abroad.

    To morales0416 - What do you mean by a $15 200 mb plan is hard to come by on Blackberry?

    If anyone can answer the other questions I had that would be great thanks!
    06-17-10 12:52 PM
  9. MissJennell#IM's Avatar
    Totally read wrong. Read that you wanted a track ball. Lol. Sorry. 9700 and 8520 are the ones that would fit.

    Oh and it is a moot point but with a cdma world phone there is a sim card in it and you can put a different one in when you go out of the country if needed. Does both cdma and gsm.
    Last edited by MissJennell; 06-17-10 at 03:59 PM.
    06-17-10 03:05 PM
  10. Matr00's Avatar
    - I want GSM ( I think that is a given being that I'm with ATT?)
    Yes, ATT is GSM and UMTS only
    - I want a full keyboard and a trackpad (not trackball). No touch keyboard.
    So, the only options are 9700 and 8520.
    Do I need a data plan to text?
    For text, no. For picture messaging, yes.
    - Even if I am NOT locked into a contract by accepting a phone upgrade - by purchasing an upgrade Blackberry through ATT (and not an outright unlocked, retail price Blackberry) does that mean I am expected and restricted to using a ATT SIM card only?
    Yes you are. Or partly. If you travel you can ask them to unlock your phone. If you want you can unlock it by yourself, just search ebay for unlock codes from 0,99$ up. It's immediate and it does in no way change your phone settings - behaviour.
    - The following question may be counterintuitive --- Are there any draw backs to an unlocked phone? Do phones with a specified/delegated carrier have less problems, and work more smoothly?
    If you are with T-Mobile and want to use UMA, it's advisable to have a T-Mobile phone (and Orange phone with Orange and so on). Other uses than UMA don't get affected (and I don't know if ATT have the UMA)
    Note: I generally do not mind paying full retail, so long as the phone will give me little problems, provide what I am looking for and will last for at least 3+ years.
    I have my first BB in my hands, a 9700, and comparing it to my previous nokia e61i, I have serious doubts that it will survive much torture. That's why I'm now buying a rubber case... Hoping for the best.
    Lastly, If anyone can give me a run down of what WiFi is compared to 3G. Actually it's the 3G I am more unclear about. I remember seeing discussed somewhere how 9700 automatically connects to 3G as opposed to 2G Network and how it was better to be connected to 2G for some reason etc? Does the 3G have anything to do with providing texting capabilities? Or is that only the case when texting/sending photos, files etc?
    WiFi - search it in Wikipedia! If you're in range of a WiFi hotspot you can use that data connection and not use your data plan. Abroad it helps you keep your roaming cost low.
    3G and 2G. 3G means high speed mobile internet, worse coverage, and faster battery drain while moving. If you don't need high speed internet (with a blackberry data is compressed before being sent to your mobile, so if you're not going to use youtube or other streaming services, you will survive fine without) keep it on 2G. If you're always in the same place with very good 3G coverage, 3G will lessen the battery drain.

    I beg pardon for my english!
    Last edited by Matr00; 06-17-10 at 03:43 PM.
    06-17-10 03:40 PM
  11. nycchick's Avatar
    Thanks Matr00 - very informative! And your english is just fine.

    Yes I am currently looking at the 8520 and the 9700. What makes the 9700 fragile? Maybe 8520 is more durable?

    If I will not be using data often (e-mails, browsing internet etc). And primarily using the phone for voice and text. Can I turn off the 3G/2G and still text? Can I turn both WiFi and 3G/2G off and still use voice and text?

    I am still a little unsure about the UMA aspect and the drawbacks of having an unlocked phone. From what I understand UMA helps transition by connection more smoothly, when I am roaming (traveling etc)?
    06-17-10 03:56 PM
  12. Matr00's Avatar
    Yes I am currently looking at the 8520 and the 9700. What makes the 9700 fragile? Maybe 8520 is more durable?
    I can't answer you, I've never had the 8520 in my hands. The 9700 FEELS more fragile than my nokia. Maybe because it's all plastic on the outside. Or it's my old phone that is more "rugged" than average.
    If I will not be using data often (e-mails, browsing internet etc). And primarily using the phone for voice and text. Can I turn off the 3G/2G and still text? Can I turn both WiFi and 3G/2G off and still use voice and text?
    2G is what you use with your motorola NOW to make calls/send/receive text. If you turn it off, you have a nice PDA and nothing more. You can lock your phone in 2G, and avoid to go in auto mode 2G/3G. You can turn off WiFi.
    I am still a little unsure about the UMA aspect and the drawbacks of having an unlocked phone. From what I understand UMA helps transition by connection more smoothly, when I am roaming (traveling etc)?
    I looked up, and ATT doesn't offer UMA. UMA lets you use your phone under WiFi when you have no signal or are abroad like you would under ATT signal, so you can use your plan minutes and text

    Don't mind using an unlocked phone/unlocking your phone. There's NO difference other than the possibility of using other sim cards.
    06-17-10 04:06 PM
  13. nycchick's Avatar
    MissJennell - It's ok, I figured it was an oversight... thanks for the other input.

    Okay, so I'm feeling more confident about an unlocked phone. Hopefully I can make up my mind today and buy it tomorrow. By the way if I go to ATT to purchase the unlocked phone. Is it in the box as an unlocked phone, and unbranded. Or is it really an ATT Blackberry that they will unlock for me?

    Now I have to decide between a 8520 and 9700. I think the only thing the 8520 may have over the 9700 is it's slightly bigger, thus a bigger keyboard. And also it may be more durable.

    Any input on the 8520 vs 9700 is welcomed!
    06-17-10 04:25 PM
  14. avt123's Avatar
    Yes I am currently looking at the 8520 and the 9700. What makes the 9700 fragile? Maybe 8520 is more durable?
    I had AT&T and the 9700. I would suggest getting the 9000 instead. The 9700 IMO feel extremely cheap. Probably because it is really light and small. The bezel creaked, keyboard made weird noises and the LCD would ripple every time I touched the "back, send, end and BB button". Does not feel anywhere near as sturdy as the 9000.

    If I will not be using data often (e-mails, browsing internet etc). And primarily using the phone for voice and text. Can I turn off the 3G/2G and still text? Can I turn both WiFi and 3G/2G off and still use voice and text?
    If you purchase and plan to use a smartphone, you need a data plan. It is a requirement on most if not all carriers. Just get the cheapest plan available if you plan on barely using data.

    I am still a little unsure about the UMA aspect and the drawbacks of having an unlocked phone. From what I understand UMA helps transition by connection more smoothly, when I am roaming (traveling etc)?
    UMA allows you to make phone calls over a WiFi connection. In the US, only T-Mobile offers this option. It is very helpful if you have spotty coverage, or can just get better coverage while in the comfort of a WiFi hotspot.

    There are no drawbacks of an unlocked phone. It allows you to connect to whatever GSM carrier you want (as long as you have their SIM, and 3G will only work on networks that support the bands your device has).
    Last edited by avt123; 06-17-10 at 04:36 PM.
    06-17-10 04:32 PM
  15. avt123's Avatar
    MissJennell - It's ok, I figured it was an oversight... thanks for the other input.

    Okay, so I'm feeling more confident about an unlocked phone. Hopefully I can make up my mind today and buy it tomorrow. By the way if I go to ATT to purchase the unlocked phone. Is it in the box as an unlocked phone, and unbranded. Or is it really an ATT Blackberry that they will unlock for me?

    Now I have to decide between a 8520 and 9700. I think the only thing the 8520 may have over the 9700 is it's slightly bigger, thus a bigger keyboard. And also it may be more durable.

    Any input on the 8520 vs 9700 is welcomed!
    AT&T does not sell BBs unlocked. You have to ask for the code. They also do not sell BBs unbranded. The only unbranded device they sell is the Nexus One.

    The 9700 is the better device. But you will probably notice no difference with the 8520, as the OS is the same.
    06-17-10 04:34 PM
  16. nycchick's Avatar
    avt123 - you've brought something to my attention. So the "non-commitment" price ATT offers on the website is not the same as an unlocked phone? It only means I will not be stuck in a contract? "Non-commitment" does not equal "unlocked"?

    Not to be a pest - what makes the 9700 better than the 8250? The fact that it accommodates HSDPA and UMTS? (not sure what that is).

    I do see that the 9000 offers more onboard memory and accommodates 802.11a and 802.11 b/g. And from what I gather is possibly more durable than 9700?

    What is the difference between onboard memory and flash?
    06-17-10 04:56 PM
  17. fearmychickens's Avatar
    - ATT is and will be my carrier, has been forever and never had any problems.
    - I want GSM ( I think that is a given being that I'm with ATT?)
    - I want a full keyboard and a trackpad (not trackball). No touch keyboard.
    Bold 9700. Nuff said.
    06-17-10 05:21 PM
  18. nycchick's Avatar
    Bold 9700. Nuff said.
    Appreciate you being firm and concise. I did get a bit distracted with the 9000 talk.

    But I still could used some clarification on the unlocked, unbranded, non-commitment stuff.
    06-17-10 05:38 PM
  19. Scarlett's Avatar
    I have the 9700 and it is the most sturdy of all the BB's I have had except for the 9000. I have dropped it several times and do not have any scratches or dents. The 9700 has been the most reliable of any I have had. My carrier is AT&T which I've had since the 1980's when we had the pouch phone. I've not had any issues with the service. We travel a great deal and there are very few times I don't have a signal. Those times were when we were down in a valley or in a very remote area.
    06-17-10 05:43 PM
  20. nycchick's Avatar
    I have the 9700 and it is the most sturdy of all the BB's I have had except for the 9000. I have dropped it several times and do not have any scratches or dents. The 9700 has been the most reliable of any I have had. My carrier is AT&T which I've had since the 1980's when we had the pouch phone. I've not had any issues with the service. We travel a great deal and there are very few times I don't have a signal. Those times were when we were down in a valley or in a very remote area.
    Thanks for the input and reassurance!

    Any clue on the unlocked, unbranded, non-committal distinction?
    06-17-10 05:56 PM
  21. Scarlett's Avatar
    Unlocked allows you to use the phone on another network. If you are not planning on using another carrier this isn't something you need to be concerned about. Should you decide to sell it in the future you might want to get it unlocked which would make it a better selling point. Unbranded is just when a phone does not have a carrier name or symbol on the phone. Non-committal is where you buy the phone outright without a contract. Once again I don't worry about signing a contract because I plan to stay with AT&T. If I can save a few hundred dollars by signing a contract I sign.
    06-17-10 06:02 PM
  22. nycchick's Avatar
    I know but I like the freedom of an unlocked phone. Especially when I'll be traveling more frequently overseas.

    Just to clarify - on ATT's website - where they say their non-committal price is x amount of dollars. That only means I am paying extra not to have a contract. But it doesn't mean it is unlocked BB phone right? It is still locked to ATT?

    Apologies for being a nuisance.
    06-17-10 06:19 PM
  23. ST79's Avatar
    The 9700 has 3G, 8520 doesn't.
    The 9700 has higher screen resolution than 8520.
    The 9700 has more powerful processor.
    The 9700 is classy than 8520 (looks cheap)
    The 9700 *will* get OS 6.0, 8520 will not.
    The 9700 will get the new webkit browser, 8520 will not.

    Hope this helps ...

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    Last edited by ST79; 06-17-10 at 06:25 PM.
    06-17-10 06:21 PM
  24. Scarlett's Avatar
    [QUOTE=nycchick;5251106]I know but I like the freedom of an unlocked phone. Especially when I'll be traveling more frequently overseas.

    Just to clarify - on ATT's website - where they say their non-committal price is x amount of dollars. That only means I am paying extra not to have a contract. But it doesn't mean it is unlocked BB phone right? It is still locked to ATT?


    You are not a nuisance but you are smart to do your research prior to investing in a device. Getting your phone unlocked is quick and not expensive. You are correct about non-committal price, it does not mean it is unlocked. Feel free to PM me if you need more specific information. Enjoy your travels overseas. I just got back from Hawaii and loved it there.
    06-17-10 06:27 PM
  25. ST79's Avatar
    Checkout this thread ...

    http://forums.crackberry.com/f157/un...anding-181612/

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    06-17-10 06:33 PM
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