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View Poll Results: Which computer should Mike use to sync?

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  • Use the BB with Windows, the better desktop client

    19 86.36%
  • Use the BB with Mac and suffer like a 2nd class citizen

    3 13.64%
12-10-09 04:57 PM
34 12
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  1. Mike Overbo's Avatar
    This is an official Smartphone Experts Round Robin thread and stuff.

    Hi! I'm Mike Overbo, I blog and write over at Phone different, Smartphone Experts' iPhone site. I'm also a regular contributor to TreoCentral, mostly through the TreoCentral TreoCast, a podcast I do with Dieter of WMExperts about things related to all things Palm.

    And I've said some, ah, unfairly venemous things about BlackBerry in the past. ok, the very recent past. Some of my gripes will still hold true at the end of the week, but it's been a good couple of days on the BlackBerry. It's surprised me so far.

    But, I haven't been using it to its full potential. There are a few questions that I have that I'd like to ask, and I have to ask them in a public forum, so here goes:

    1. how do I get contacts into bb messenger (or the BB in general) from gmail?
    2. how do I wipe the 8310, making it a blank slate for the next person to use it?
    3. I'm just syncing to the cloud just now, but will set up computer syncing in a few hours. I've downloaded the mac client (and use a mac as my primary machine), but the blackberry will probably get a fairer shake if I test it on Windows. Which one do you think I should test?


    here's what I installed so far in terms of 3rd party software. I'm not looking to spend any cash, since it's not likely that I'd be using it for more than a few days, but if there's some freeware app that's a "must-have", please let me know about it.
    1. I have my email accounts all set up (all IMAP, I don't have any Exchange access)
    2. Yahoo! Go
    3. Google Maps for Mobile
    4. Ramble from SRA.com for AIM
    5. Opera Mini


    Anything obvious that I've missed?
    10-29-07 02:35 PM
  2. wolfscmb's Avatar
    how do I get contacts into bb messenger (or the BB in general) from gmail?
    http://forums.crackberry.com/f3/blac...oes-work-5877/

    how do I wipe the 8310, making it a blank slate for the next person to use it?
    http://forums.crackberry.com/f52/how...y-device-4585/

    I'm just syncing to the cloud just now, but will set up computer syncing in a few hours. I've downloaded the mac client (and use a mac as my primary machine), but the blackberry will probably get a fairer shake if I test it on Windows. Which one do you think I should test?
    you should test the BB on a windows machine ... from what i can gather it doesnt have that great of support for the mac ...

    as far as 3rd party apps ...
    google maps
    JiveTalk
    operamini beta 3
    10-29-07 02:59 PM
  3. rrrebo's Avatar
    1. BB Messenger is PIN-to-PIN, so it only works with other BlackBerry users. You have any friends with BlackBerries?

    You can add anyone to your BB address book by opening one of their e-mails in your Messages folder, hilighting their e-mail address in the From line, and hitting Menu>Add to Address Book. If they actually have a BlackBerry, make sure you add their PIN.

    To add a PIN contact from your address book, open BB Messenger. Hit Menu>Add a Contact. Hilight the contact you want to add, hit Menu>Request (PIN) {person}.

    To add a PIN contact to Messenger WITHOUT putting them in your address book, open BB Messenger and hit Menu>Add a Contact. Scroll up to hilight [Use Once]. Hit Menu>Request by PIN...

    2. To wipe your BlackBerry, set a password in the security options. Now lock the handheld and enter the WRONG password 10 times. That should wipe the device. BES admins may be able to send a remote "kill handheld" command to do the same thing.

    3. Both. It's a good comparison to test it in your preferred, native environment, and one you might be less familiar with.

    Apps:
    You pretty much have the biggies. I use Yahoo and MSN, and I'm on AT&T, which doesn't like Yahoo, so early on I paid for JiveTalk, hands down the best IM client for BB. Other than that, I have Opera Mini, Google Maps, and haven't found many other things I need. RSS users seem to like Viigo.
    10-29-07 03:01 PM
  4. audit's Avatar
    [B]
    1. how do I get contacts into bb messenger (or the BB in general) from gmail?
    2. how do I wipe the 8310, making it a blank slate for the next person to use it?
    3. I'm just syncing to the cloud just now, but will set up computer syncing in a few hours. I've downloaded the mac client (and use a mac as my primary machine), but the blackberry will probably get a fairer shake if I test it on Windows. Which one do you think I should test?
    You can't sync form your gmail contacts so don't even try without busting your skull a few times. Use Windows to sync everything with and save yourself a major migraine. You already have answers on how to wipe your BB before you send it on to your next guy so your good there.

    here's what I installed so far in terms of 3rd party software. I'm not looking to spend any cash, since it's not likely that I'd be using it for more than a few days, but if there's some freeware app that's a "must-have", please let me know about it.
    1. I have my email accounts all set up (all IMAP, I don't have any Exchange access)
    2. Yahoo! Go
    3. Google Maps for Mobile
    4. Ramble from SRA.com for AIM
    5. Opera Mini


    Anything obvious that I've missed?
    Since your only using it for 30 days, get the free trial of Jivetalk and have all your IM names in one perfect client. You will find that it truly is the BEST out for Blackberries. Google Maps is sweet and you might want to try Windows Live for BB as it's also a very nice app. Viigo is the RSS reader of choice for most people as it's free and works great.

    Any other questions, shoot away. This will be like shooting fish in a barrel.
    10-29-07 03:15 PM
  5. audit's Avatar
    [B]
    And I've said some, ah, unfairly venemous things about BlackBerry in the past. ok, the very recent past. Some of my gripes will still hold true at the end of the week, but it's been a good couple of days on the BlackBerry. It's surprised me so far.
    I'd like to see a link to some of these gripes as I'm always up for a good debate . I've used WM5/6 devices, Palm Devices and Blackberry's. I tried the iPhone when a co-worker had one but that lasted about 3hr's for me max before I couldn't take it anymore.
    10-29-07 03:18 PM
  6. rrrebo's Avatar
    *peers at audit01*
    *peers at Mike Overbo*
    *peers down at ginormous gauntlet*

    Looks like this here's gonna be a PHONE GEEK THROWDOWN!

    Throw down!
    10-29-07 03:51 PM
  7. ricpac's Avatar
    JiveTalk is second-best to the wonder that is the BlackBerry
    10-29-07 03:58 PM
  8. kasperapd's Avatar
    *peers at audit01*
    *peers at Mike Overbo*
    *peers down at ginormous gauntlet*

    Looks like this here's gonna be a PHONE GEEK THROWDOWN!

    Throw down!
    This should be good... I'm in!
    10-29-07 03:58 PM
  9. kasperapd's Avatar
    2. To wipe your BlackBerry, set a password in the security options. Now lock the handheld and enter the WRONG password 10 times. That should wipe the device. BES admins may be able to send a remote "kill handheld" command to do the same thing.

    Easier way to wipe is to go to Options > Security Options > General Settings, press the menu button (to the left of the trackball), scroll down to Wipe Handheld
    10-29-07 04:00 PM
  10. rrrebo's Avatar
    Easier way to wipe is to go to Options > Security Options > General Settings, press the menu button (to the left of the trackball), scroll down to Wipe Handheld
    Oh, SURE, if you want the EASY way out......
    10-29-07 04:11 PM
  11. Mike Overbo's Avatar
    I'd like to see a link to some of these gripes as I'm always up for a good debate . I've used WM5/6 devices, Palm Devices and Blackberry's. I tried the iPhone when a co-worker had one but that lasted about 3hr's for me max before I couldn't take it anymore.
    Heh. You'd have to slog through a bunch of the treo podcasts to hear it. So I'll throw out a quick list of my gripes. It goes without saying that the BlackBerry platform has many strengths (I'll be writing more about those tomorrow), but these won't be included:

    • no touchscreen
    • j2me: while I applaud it for being open, it's not a good mobile development platform. it's a very far cry from what java is supposed to be: write once, run anywhere. from my experience, j2me has been a software mgmt nightmare for multiple featurephones. Note that this isn't a knock against Java, it's a knock against J2ME.
    • cluttered interface. Kevin has already told me about sorting and hiding icons, but I shouldn't have to theme before I have a useful UI -- it should be intuitive out of the box (can you tell I come from the palm world?). I have a problem with the default theme (blue/white clouds, blue/white icons), which I'm guessing a lot of BB newbs out there will stick with. The busy background leads to poor contrast, and with the music notes and gears all over the place, I can't really tell what does what without reading. Sure, I know, I can read, but it would be better if I didn't have to. Worst, the text color is the shadow effect, the inner color of the font is the *same color* as the background.
    • the BB standard theme is 6 rows of 6 -- too dense to provide detail for what they represent, and enough that they wouldn't fit on one screen. Long story short, I'm desperate for a more sensible default theme, or a better way to present apps, a menu system, anything. If there's a theme anyone could suggest to alleviate this based off what I wrote here, I'd really appreciate it.
    • ridiculously poor media capabilities. behind even windows mobile. I think blackberry is going to see some real growing pains here.
    • settings: all over the place. categorization is weak, very obviously designed to be centrally managed from the enterprise. of course, this is also a strength within that market segment, but it's a weakness for the individual consumer.
    • case in point, ringtones inside of profiles. Like hiding applications, I had to be told this one.
    • the BB OS, as it appears to the (novice?) BB user, appears a lot like very advanced featurephone OS. multitasking is clearly present but not to all apps; I have a task switcher but not everything gets to use it -- 3rd party apps being the biggie here. Would be nice to switch from opera mini to GMM, for example. If the big guns aren't multitasking and there are APIs present for it, there's probably something wrong with the API.


    Of course, you could say that last one is pretty much all crocodile tears coming from a Palm/iPhone user, and you'd be right: iPhone prevents me from actively multitasking even though it exists, it only allows passive multitasking and then only in certain apps (and 3rd party apps are only available via hacking the device).
    10-29-07 06:37 PM
  12. audit's Avatar
    • no touchscreen
    • Good, then people with Oily skin don't need to worry about cleaning the screen all the time. I don't have oily skin but you can imagine what people that do have it would make the screen look like. Not to mention the fact that putting it in your pocket or case, you won't launch a app by mistake.

    • j2me: while I applaud it for being open, it's not a good mobile development platform. it's a very far cry from what java is supposed to be: write once, run anywhere. from my experience, j2me has been a software mgmt nightmare for multiple featurephones. Note that this isn't a knock against Java, it's a knock against J2ME.
    The write once, run everywhere doesn't and won't fly with me. I work around a few hundered Java developers all day long and I just showed that paragraph to a few of them and I think one pissed his pants laughing so hard.

  13. cluttered interface. Kevin has already told me about sorting and hiding icons, but I shouldn't have to theme before I have a useful UI -- it should be intuitive out of the box (can you tell I come from the palm world?). I have a problem with the default theme (blue/white clouds, blue/white icons), which I'm guessing a lot of BB newbs out there will stick with. The busy background leads to poor contrast, and with the music notes and gears all over the place, I can't really tell what does what without reading. Sure, I know, I can read, but it would be better if I didn't have to. Worst, the text color is the shadow effect, the inner color of the font is the *same color* as the background.
I remember the PALM TREO having icon's all over the place also. The first thing I did was create a junk subcategories and moved all the apps that I didn't use in that. Not to mention the apps that weren't in the correct categories by default.

  • the BB standard theme is 6 rows of 6 -- too dense to provide detail for what they represent, and enough that they wouldn't fit on one screen. Long story short, I'm desperate for a more sensible default theme, or a better way to present apps, a menu system, anything. If there's a theme anyone could suggest to alleviate this based off what I wrote here, I'd really appreciate it.
  • You won't find 1 theme that fits everyone's tastes by default. I like the Dimension Icon theme for me but that's just me, we have people that like the today theme, Zen themes, etc. If you can design a theme that EVERYONE will love, make sure that Bill Gates gives you all the access codes to his mountain house since you'll be the new owner.

  • ridiculously poor media capabilities. behind even windows mobile. I think blackberry is going to see some real growing pains here.
  • What's the problem with the Media? Music is great as well as Video's. IMHO they are above the Palm Media. So some devices don't have video recording, there's enough different BB's out there to please the people that need those different apps.

  • settings: all over the place. categorization is weak, very obviously designed to be centrally managed from the enterprise. of course, this is also a strength within that market segment, but it's a weakness for the individual consumer.
  • All over the place? Your kidding right? It's in one place called PROFILES. I suggest you spend some time getting to understand to that before you comment on the settings being all over the place.

  • case in point, ring tones inside of profiles. Like hiding applications, I had to be told this one.
  • You really need to do better then this. Every Palm user that I've converted over love the fact they didn't need a 3rd party app for MP3 ringtones and how they could customize different profiles.

  • the BB OS, as it appears to the (novice?) BB user, appears a lot like very advanced featurephone OS. multitasking is clearly present but not to all apps; I have a task switcher but not everything gets to use it -- 3rd party apps being the biggie here. Would be nice to switch from opera mini to GMM, for example. If the big guns aren't multitasking and there are APIs present for it, there's probably something wrong with the API.
  • It's not too hard to have a phone conversation and look at your calender or look up a phone number in contacts. It's a simple button push and scroll the wheel to what you want open. Your boring me here with this stuff. Sorry.

    Of course, you could say that last one is pretty much all crocodile tears coming from a Palm/iPhone user, and you'd be right
    I'd say they are all croc tears. I'm buying stock in Kleenex this week and feel that based on you using a Blackberry, I'll do pretty good. Make sure you get the soft tissue.

    Next round is after the bell, I'll let the membership decide if we're ready for round 2 or if we have either a TKO or do you want to just toss in the towel now?

    I'd be more then happy to debate this for one of your Podcasts also if your ever interested. I'm a little off my game right now since my Parkinson's meds have me a little off tonight.
    Last edited by audit01; 10-29-07 at 08:18 PM. Reason: spelling errors. Told ya I was off tonight.
    10-29-07 07:33 PM
    Like 0
  • ricpac's Avatar
    folks, please continue.. this is by far the best thread for me right now. i should be expecting over a thousand views within the next couple of hours or so.. hats off to the EXPERTS! thank goodness i don't have sweaty hands..

    is this the score now? BB 1, Palm 0
    10-29-07 07:46 PM
  • Mike Overbo's Avatar
    Good, then people with Oily skin don't need to worry about cleaning the screen all the time. I don't have oily skin but you can imagine what people that do have it would make the screen look like. Not to mention the fact that putting it in your pocket or case, you won't launch a app by mistake.
    What, I can't like touchscreens? Besides, with candybar and clamshell form factors, the screen goes right against the ear. It's gonna get oily whether you have a touchscreen or not.

    Every modern smartphone OS has safeguards like key locks, etc. to prevent app launches and pocket dials by mistake. BB isn't unique in this regard.

    The write once, run everywhere doesn't and won't fly with me. I work around a few hundered Java developers all day long and I just showed that paragraph to a few of them and I think one pissed his pants laughing so hard.
    We're not talking about Java. We're talking about J2ME. If J2ME runs everywhere, why do I have to download the Opera Mini 4.0 beta to get it running on the curve? Why wouldn't it be listed as supported for older versions? Food for thought...

    I remember the PALM TREO having icon's all over the place also. The first thing I did was create a junk subcategories and moved all the apps that I didn't use in that. Not to mention the apps that weren't in the correct categories by default.
    I never said that Palm's interface was anything approaching perfection. It is, however, way less cluttered than the BB icon interface.

    You won't find 1 theme that fits everyone's tastes by default. I like the Dimension Icon theme for me but that's just me, we have people that like the today theme, Zen themes, etc. If you can design a theme that EVERYONE will love, make sure that Bill Gates gives you all the access codes to his mountain house since you'll be the new owner.
    you answered none of my usability complaints. Also, Bill Gates & Co. have their own difficulties creating an uncluttered interface. If Bill could design a cleanly interfaced product, he'd have two mountain houses.

    What's the problem with the Media? Music is great as well as Video's. IMHO they are above the Palm Media. So some devices don't have video recording, there's enough different BB's out there to please the people that need those different apps.
    I'm saving browser gripes for tomorrow's article.

    All over the place? Your kidding right? It's in one place called PROFILES. I suggest you spend some time getting failure to that before you comment on the settings being all over the place.
    Two! Two places. Profiles and Options. And bluetooth. Three! Three places. Profiles, Options, Bluetooth, and Personal Email Setup. Four! Four places. I repeat, settings are all over the place.

    You really need to do better then this. Every Palm user that I've converted over love the fact they didn't need a 3rd party app for MP3 ringtones and how they could customize different profiles.
    Rest assured that I'm not here to praise Palm, not by any means. I've converted files to AMR, I've been through the pain. All I'm saying here is that the process is not friendly o-o-b. Your average user wouldn't find it without help.

    It's not too hard to have a phone conversation and look at your calender or look up a phone number in contacts. It's a simple button push and scroll the wheel to what you want open. Your boring me here with this stuff. Sorry.
    Multitasking is great on BB, where it exists. Why doesn't it exist in the big name 3rd party cloud apps? Opera? Yahoo! Go? Google Maps for Mobile?

    I'd say they are all croc tears. I'm buying stock in Kleenex this week and feel that based on you using a Blackberry, I'll do pretty good. Make sure you get the soft tissue.

    Next round is after the bell, I'll let the membership decide if we're ready for round 2 or if we have either a TKO or do you want to just toss in the towel now?

    I'd be more then happy to debate this for one of your Podcasts also if your ever interested. I'm a little off my game right now since my Parkinson's meds have me a little off tonight.
    10-29-07 08:18 PM
  • Mike Overbo's Avatar
    folks, please continue.. this is by far the best thread for me right now. i should be expecting over a thousand views within the next couple of hours or so.. hats off to the EXPERTS! thank goodness i don't have sweaty hands..

    is this the score now? BB 1, Palm 0
    Heh. I run the Apple iPhone site, not the Palm Treo one.

    Also, I'm not here to dis the BB or score points for Palm. I'm here to learn about the BB, write about my perspective when I begin using it, and write about my perspective when my time with the BB is done.
    10-29-07 08:24 PM
  • ricpac's Avatar
    Heh. I run the Apple iPhone site, not the Palm Treo one.

    Also, I'm not here to dis the BB or score points for Palm. I'm here to learn about the BB, write about my perspective when I begin using it, and write about my perspective when my time with the BB is done.
    Okayyy.. no more scores now and i look forward to your post tomorrow about the browser.
    10-29-07 08:45 PM
  • Mike Overbo's Avatar
    FYI, I chose the windows route. I pulled contacts and calendar from Yahoo!. Pretty slick... I was happy to see a 'pull from the cloud' option, I wasn't excited about doing a bunch of CSV wizardry.
    10-29-07 11:30 PM
  • Bla1ze's Avatar
    Ya, while pocketMAC is ok, it lacks in comparison to it's windows counterpart
    (Ouch, that hurt to give windows that much credit)
    10-30-07 07:44 AM
  • sher_zx6r's Avatar
    *peers at audit01*
    *peers at Mike Overbo*
    *peers down at ginormous gauntlet*

    Looks like this here's gonna be a PHONE GEEK THROWDOWN!

    Throw down!
    LET'S GET READY TO RUMBLE
    10-30-07 08:52 AM
  • dblo7's Avatar
    I won't post much b/c somebody has already posted a majority of the answers, so for a free application you should get the facebook app. it's not that good, glitchy and all, but if you are a true facebook geek you should get this.
    10-30-07 08:54 AM
  • kasperapd's Avatar
    This is getting good.
    10-30-07 09:36 AM
  • Ryan Blundell's Avatar
    Why can't we all just... get along?
    10-30-07 11:11 AM
  • wolfscmb's Avatar
    I have $50 on audit01
    10-30-07 12:11 PM
  • audit's Avatar
    I'm waiting for his post on the browser and whatever else he can think of. Even though I'm sick as h311 today, I'm still going to try to put up a good debate.
    10-30-07 01:07 PM
  • gadgetluva's Avatar
    I'm definitely going to have to read all of the posts in this thread to get more familiar with Blackberrys. How much fun would these things be without the support of these great forums?
    10-30-07 08:56 PM
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