1. defcon3's Avatar
    Ok, this is a rant but not one based on emotions but rather on common sense and reason. And no, I will not compare against Apple phone-wanna-be.

    I am a Blackberry user with 8900. Lately, I am more and more looking towards other platforms for several reasons. When I write about the "others" I am referring to HTC HD2 (WinMo), Motorola DEXT/CLIQ (Android), Nokia N900 and the HTC Dragon (coming in 2010Q1), instead of the usual suspects BB9700 and Storm2.

    First, allow me to explain what I want from a phone:

    Top class call quality / reception / signal processing
    Ok, BBs are at the top of their game here. But, who says the others are not? No advantage.

    Autonomous GPS (no need for A-GPS)
    Again, no advantage over others. In fact, many other platforms allow of "off-line" navigation - saving you tons of streaming data when in roaming (ref. Garmin mobile on WinMo/Symbian) No advantage.

    Minimum of 1 day fully autonomous work (multimedia, calls, messages)
    Well, this is not something to write home about (except iToys). No advantage

    Multiple email accounts (preferably IMAP)
    This is the one that gives BBs a leading position - emails. But lately others have not been sleeping either. Advantage, quickly melting.

    Facebook, twitter, etc
    Almost any newly released smartphone has these in one form or another. No advantage.

    Perfect browser experience including youtube videos
    I am really sorry but this is where BBs fail massively compared to the competition. FAIL.

    Solid build quality no cracks, gaps, squeaks, minimum to zero dust-collection
    I must say, after almost an year with my 8900 - I am happy. Others are improving as well. No advantage

    Full keyboard on screen or physical
    I am pleased with my 8900 keyboard but this is also no longer a distinctive feature of BBs No advantage

    Free 3rd party applications weather, travel, maps/navigation, streaming radio
    This is where BB is waaaaay behind any other platform - most of the apps are paid, most of the free ones are just-not-quite-there-yet due to the difficulties in programming for the platform. FAIL.

    In addition, I have to pay Orange a monthly fee for BIS (the before-mentioned BB Tax) to get/send my emails. Roughly, per year I pay $100 only so I can send/receive emails in addition to my data subscription?!

    In addition, again, BB clearly has no flagship device. The Bold 9000 is old and technologically behind - slow processor, underperforming OS, little ram, small cam, small battery, small screen, thick - all this in comparison to its own newer Curve devices, need I go on? When you say a "Flagship device" it means just that - something you can display and evoke awe in the competition - a benchmark for all others. At present Blackberry has no such device.

    Now, could someone explain to me again the advantages of a Blackberry in comparison to HTC HD2, the Motorola DEXT, the Nokia N900 and similar devices?

    Note: I will kindly ask fanboys to step aside. I am not picking a fight and wish to read reason in the answers. I am trying to justify to myself why I pay $100+ more/year just to read mail when clearly in all other departments my favorite BB is lagging behind.
    10-12-09 07:04 AM
  2. spangler07's Avatar
    I like that you post this in the CrackBerry.com Forums and then ask the fanboys to step aside.

    Any person that spends their time on a message board to talk about BlackBerrys is a fanboy. Like myself.

    So go play with your WinMo, and we here will stay with BlackBerry. I don't need to make a list to prove its superiority.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    10-12-09 08:29 AM
  3. rethcork's Avatar
    Hello Defcon3 let me just state a thing or two about your post.

    Nice one from Salomondrin: There is such a device and it WILL have some true flagship tech inside it, like the liquid lens camera for example!

    If they went an extra mile for the camera lens, I wonder what other tricks will this pack. Exciting Q32010 it will be!
    As I am now on queue to buy an Onyx or S2, all I need to know about this baby is the approx date of arrival:

    Q4'09
    Q1'10
    Q2'10
    H2'10

    Is the right answer higher or lower on the list... Please Crucial, Sal, have mercy and throw something to drool over
    I would recommend the 8520 or the 8900 - surely, you absolutely MUST dig out and put a pink theme so the first time she powers it there is a WOW trust me, works like magic

    And remember, little things and details work for girls, don't let anyone tell you otherwise
    So in all these posts above which you made in less then a month ago you LOVE the BB world. Now you turn from it? Also in the last post you are given the option to recommend one of three devices Tour, Storm, or Envy2. And you recommend a BB I thought they suck?

    Make your mind up man.
    10-12-09 08:48 AM
  4. dragonsamus's Avatar
    But the bold 9000 is the flagship device. Compare it to the phones around when it was released. Its almost if not 2 years old. Its replacement is coming and soon. The 9700 bold will take over and I think its a pretty good one. Compare the 9700 to the phones being released now if you want to be fair.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    10-12-09 08:48 AM
  5. defcon3's Avatar
    @rethcork - no one has quoted em before! I feel honored.

    Seriously, @rethcork - thank you for your feedback; Now, to the point - please do not misquote me - I never said they "suck". And probably never will. In the past one month (I assume your thorough research is correct) I have started asking myself if having a BB gives me value. Features/price, experience compared to the competition - this kind of value.

    I must admit, it was a friend of mine who slipped me the "you pay tax to access your email" line - but then, proud owner's pride aside - it is true.

    To come back to your point - no, I do not think BBs suck and you will last hear it from me - I am pondering and hoping to find in discussion here more valid points why I should spend more money compared to a different platform.

    Perhaps BIS is a thing of the past? Who knows?
    10-12-09 08:59 AM
  6. rethcork's Avatar
    @rethcork - no one has quoted em before! I feel honored.

    Seriously, @rethcork - thank you for your feedback; Now, to the point - please do not misquote me - I never said they "suck". And probably never will. In the past one month (I assume your thorough research is correct) I have started asking myself if having a BB gives me value. Features/price, experience compared to the competition - this kind of value.

    I must admit, it was a friend of mine who slipped me the "you pay tax to access your email" line - but then, proud owner's pride aside - it is true.

    To come back to your point - no, I do not think BBs suck and you will last hear it from me - I am pondering and hoping to find in discussion here more valid points why I should spend more money compared to a different platform.

    Perhaps BIS is a thing of the past? Who knows?
    Here above you once again ask a lot of questions that need a great deal of discussion to clear up the best choices and options. But you ask is BIS a thing of the past? NO! What I think BB/RIM need to do is take there strengths from the BES business and make a brand new approach to BIS. Something that more closey competes with all the upcoming devices and what they offer. RIM has become stuck in a Microsoft problem. Legacy support for the possibility that someone might need it. They need to do what Apple did with OSX and wipe the slate clean and redesign from the bottom up. New software, new approach to hardware, but making sure they never lose what makes a BB/RIM device so good.

    Any opinions about this?
    10-12-09 09:13 AM
  7. defcon3's Avatar
    My comment to this would be "+1"

    I do feel that RIM is somehow "stuck" - they want to innovate but are afraid to wipe the slate clean. Some time ago, I discussed the RIM-buying-PALM topic from that angle - saying that, similar to RedHat and Fedora, RIM are in desperate need of a sand-box, a playground, a test-lab, a green field where they can re-invent what they are best at, with the input from the community, i.e. their desired new-market-share-of-young-people-outside-BES

    While we try to find answer to this,
    PALM rose from a bankrupt below $1/share to now $14+/share, breeding a community of developers; indeed, quite slow and still not sure if they would pull it off.
    HTC rose from a simple contractor manufacturer to a leading supplier of better balanced devices, with a choice of platforms.
    Motorola are likely to reinvent themselves - they quit LinMo and committed fully to Android, offering great value.

    So, when I am talking of common sense and spending money for something that is available by default - this is why I look at other platforms. Still, I believe you nailed it RIM need a clean slate or they might be overtaken by (formerly) unknown competitors. The question is - should I wait along and keep spending money, staying true-to-the-platform or not? Would you spend extra $100 /year for email alone? $49 for weather apps?
    10-12-09 09:29 AM
  8. FineWolf's Avatar
    • Built For Enterprise Deployment
      BlackBerries are built with businesses in mind and comes with tools that allow them to easily deploy and keep track of BBs used in their business. UNMATCHED ADVANTAGE

    • Design Quality
      RIM's designs are well thought-out. No only do they build hardware that meets their requirements, they also go out of their way to think of what developers can do with there device. A good example of this is the LED lights. They could of stayed with only a red diode. I can't say that for other companies. Advantage

    • Development Accessibility
      While some might say that BlackBerry development is harder then other platforms, I will disagree. The RIM API is based on J2ME which is pretty much the standard in mobile development excluding the iPhone, WiMo and Android devices. Also, RIM included hooks to almost every part of the phone's hardware and software which is fantastic for 3rd party developers. Only Android matches this due to it's open nature, but in the case of Android, hardware support for 3rd party API is flaky at best. Advantage

    • Business Acceptance
      Let's face it here... Most other smartphones out there looks like toys. BlackBerry is the defacto standard in the business world and this is not likely to change. Advantage

    • Support
      There are not a lot of companies out there which still supports 5 year old hardware with software upgrades. If you have a BlackBerry, you know you'll get support for it. Advantage
    Last edited by FineWolf; 10-12-09 at 09:41 AM.
    10-12-09 09:35 AM
  9. rethcork's Avatar
    • Built For Enterprise Deployment
      BlackBerries are built with businesses in mind and comes with tools that allow them to easily deploy and keep track of BBs used in their business. UNMATCHED ADVANTAGE

    • Design Quality
      RIM's designs are well thought-out. No only do they build hardware that meets their requirements, they also go out of their way to think of what developers can do with there device. A good example of this is the LED lights. They could of stayed with only a red diode. I can't say that for other companies. Advantage
    • Development Accessibility
      While some might say that BlackBerry development is harder then other platforms, I will disagree. The RIM API is based on J2ME which is pretty much the standard in mobile development excluding the iPhone, WiMo and Android devices. Also, RIM included hooks to almost every part of the phone's hardware and software which is fantastic for 3rd party developers. Only Android matches this due to it's open nature, but in the case of Android, hardware support for 3rd party API is flaky at best. Advantage

    • Business Acceptance
      Let's face it here... Most other smartphones out there looks like toys. BlackBerry is the defacto standard in the business world and this is not likely to change. Advantage

    • Support
      There are not a lot of companies out there which still supports 5 year old hardware with software upgrades. If you have a BlackBerry, you know you'll get support for it. Advantage
    Finewolf more then half your points, which by the way are all very valid, are pointing to business benefits. If you read the last few posts this is not about the BES or business side of things, we are talking about the BIS side. Most of us are aware that the BB is the best choice for business but they are losing there stranglehold on there BIS customers as more and more good options appear in the market place.

    10-12-09 09:44 AM
  10. defcon3's Avatar
    I have to second that - when you are on BIS, accessing your business email is no different from accessing your gmail. So, as rethcork said - although valid by all means, most of your points are irrelevant to BIS users. The rest still do not explain why I need to pay for a good weather app, or use data while in roaming instead of on-micro-SD maps for navigation.
    10-12-09 09:57 AM
  11. gmkahuna's Avatar
    Finewolf more then half your points, which by the way are all very valid, are pointing to business benefits. If you read the last few posts this is not about the BES or business side of things, we are talking about the BIS side. Most of us are aware that the BB is the best choice for business but they are losing there stranglehold on there BIS customers as more and more good options appear in the market place.

    I think you may have just answered yourself here. You recognize that it was built for business use primarily, yet you want to complain that they don't serve you fairly as an individual? They probably expanded to BIS to open more market area, you bought into it like a lot of us did, so their goal was reached. RIM is constantly making strides to improve either through development, acquisition or a combination of the two. They will keep current with technology so having to use an alternate browser is just not that serious of an issue when there are free alternatives out there such as Bolt.

    Having said all of that, I do have a question for you though. Have you compared the rates for equivalent services from each provider you are interested in? I'd like to hear just how much this money spent for the "Tax" effects the difference in price on all of the different plans.
    10-12-09 10:22 AM
  12. codito's Avatar
    ]The RIM API is based on J2ME which is pretty much the standard in mobile development excluding the iPhone, WiMo and Android devices.
    There's a reason every other smartphone OS doesn't use java. It suuuuucks. Look at Maemo. You can run full fledged open office on it and it barely uses any of the CPU on the N900. Full SNES emulation. All sorts of programs you can run easily because it's based off Linux. I love my berry but java is faaaaaaaaaaar from an advantage, and in fact what's holding back the rapidly aging OS.
    10-12-09 10:41 AM
  13. luvitlo's Avatar
    Dude some points fail. I stream youtube fine. I didn't at first cause my carrier had a block on BB sou they would not stream youtube. My only complaint is I want a better version of flash so I can stream hulu and other movie and tv show sites

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    10-12-09 10:46 AM
  14. monkeee2002's Avatar
    Free 3rd party applications weather, travel, maps/navigation, streaming radio
    This is where BB is waaaaay behind any other platform - most of the apps are paid, most of the free ones are just-not-quite-there-yet due to the difficulties in programming for the platform. FAIL.
    Are you one of those people who expects all computer software to be free as well??

    Surely you are wise enough to see that RIM doesn't make a lot of the applications, and therefore should not be paid for them; but rather the people who actually take the time to create these apps should be allowed to get some money for their time.
    10-12-09 10:47 AM
  15. defcon3's Avatar
    ...Having said all of that, I do have a question for you though. Have you compared the rates for equivalent services from each provider you are interested in? I'd like to hear just how much this money spent for the "Tax" effects the difference in price on all of the different plans.
    As you probably noticed from my profile - I am in continental Europe, where almost all is GSM. My work takes me all over the place, but mostly Netherlands, UK, Denmark, Germany. It is pretty simple with alternative solutions:
    Blackberry = 1GB data plan + BIS (blackberry tax per month)
    Alternatives = 1GB data plan, no need for other charges to my plan, still have email

    In the OP I mentioned that BIS amounts to approx $100/ year: this I do not need to pay to my operator with other devices (WinMo/Android/other).
    10-12-09 10:51 AM
  16. codito's Avatar
    Then your operator sucks, not even carriers in America charge EXTRA for BIS.
    10-12-09 10:56 AM
  17. defcon3's Avatar
    Are you one of those people who expects all computer software to be free as well??

    Surely you are wise enough to see that RIM doesn't make a lot of the applications, and therefore should not be paid for them; but rather the people who actually take the time to create these apps should be allowed to get some money for their time.
    Surely, you wouldn't mind having a plethora of choices - and when something free serves you right, to simply use it (e.g. gmail)? BB is not a platform where developers produce an avalanche of apps, which by normal business logic would compete and competition would bring prices down. Excuse my French but $49 for a weather app is just too f**king much. If I ask you to name 10 BB weather apps, you'll probably name them all and still not make 10. Repeat same exercise for alternative platforms and you will see my point.

    I don't mind paying, I just wish to know exactly what I am paying for. Stability - sure, targeted-at-business - fair enough but... what else? Surely, not enough for a BIS user.
    10-12-09 10:59 AM
  18. _StephenBB81's Avatar
    They need to do what Apple did with OSX and wipe the slate clean and redesign from the bottom up. New software, new approach to hardware, but making sure they never lose what makes a BB/RIM device so good.

    Any opinions about this?

    I will comment on this,

    Apples Market Share when they did the Scrap and new was so Low doing so was almost a last ditch effort, unfortunately the problem with success is you can't be as free as start ups and new commers how do you get someone to buy into your platform if you have a history of scrapping and starting new?

    RIM just needs to work on advancing its offerings in user experince and value, while slowly making older devices obsolete,
    10-12-09 11:05 AM
  19. Laura Knotek's Avatar

    I must admit, it was a friend of mine who slipped me the "you pay tax to access your email" line - but then, proud owner's pride aside - it is true.
    Maybe things are different in Europe. Here in the USA, carriers charge the same price for a data plan for any smartphone (BB, WinMo, iPhone, etc.). It's $30/month for data from AT&T or Verizon. T-Mobile and Sprint are cheaper. There's no extra charge for BB. Just that any smartphone has higher data charge than dumbphone.
    Last edited by lak611; 10-12-09 at 11:16 AM. Reason: typo
    10-12-09 11:07 AM
  20. gmkahuna's Avatar
    As you probably noticed from my profile - I am in continental Europe, where almost all is GSM. My work takes me all over the place, but mostly Netherlands, UK, Denmark, Germany. It is pretty simple with alternative solutions:
    Blackberry = 1GB data plan + BIS (blackberry tax per month)
    Alternatives = 1GB data plan, no need for other charges to my plan, still have email

    In the OP I mentioned that BIS amounts to approx $100/ year: this I do not need to pay to my operator with other devices (WinMo/Android/other).
    I understand what you are saying, what I was asking is how much higher is your service with the BB tax than the others and how is the coverage. What I mean is what is the monthly amount due with the other services and then how much less is it than what you currently have. I would think if I could afford it, the plan with better coverage and reliability would be my choice knowing I am constantly on the go like you seem to be. There are times in life when cheaper does not mean better.

    I'm not trying to sell you on something you say you don't want or need, I'm just trying to remind you that you get what you pay for in most cases. Remember, there is a huge difference between a Mercedes and a Yugo.
    Last edited by gmkahuna; 10-12-09 at 11:18 AM.
    10-12-09 11:14 AM
  21. stuaw11's Avatar
    I agree with the OP, the advantages of BB to people who DONT HAVE to use BES are dwindling with the new OSs that are out as of recent.

    You cant say "every other platform outside iphone, WM, Android, and Pre use Java." OK, so what smartphones does that leave? None, flip phones maybe. Sorry but Java is the wave of the PAST for smartphones.

    BIS, which is consumer-minded, lags behind anything any other SMARTPHONE platform offers. Every other platform offers Exchange out of the box. Most offer FULL gmail support- 2 way sync, folders, etc out of the box. So why does RIM expect the same $30 plan which offers a glorified inbox mess to pass this day and age when other platforms support 2009 standards out of the box? It was a good consumer model 5+ years ago, but they havent changed at all with the times. Just over 35% of businesses still use Exchange as their email standard, and so do most colleges/schools (students are a HUGE BB population) so youre neglecting all of those people who cant access BES but want a "real" email experience like other platforms deliver.

    On the 3rd party software cost note, no you cant expect EVERY piece of software to be free. What the OP is saying is the quality of the free software is MUCH below the quality of free apps on other devices. Also dont forget, typically the BB versions of paid apps are 4+ times more expensive! Its time for that crap to end, because theres no reason Docs2Go is a whopping $70 on BB and $10 on iphone. Same with IM programs that run $30-40 on BB and $5-10 on iphone. Sorry but on the flip side of free, thats WAY overpriced and deters people from using apps on their phones.

    Hardware-wise, the new phones coming out are decent, but it took this long to get up to par. By the time their new hardware comes out by the holiday season there will be even more advanced phones for the other platforms. Were getting towards the end of the 3.2mp camera already and moving higher (Hero, some HTCs, etc). The RAM is FINALLY getting up to where it should have been over a year ago, but still I dont see why not make it higher. RAM is so cheap these days. If you look at all of their devices theyre basically the same at first glance. Other then the Storm they look identical in many ways over the generations. Why not think outside the box? Different form factors, some advanced hardware for once, etc.

    I agree its time to wipe the slate clean and leave Java and the old BIS mentality. Its time to support other email standards like Gmail and Exchange FULLY featured without BES for the consumer space. Otherwise, theyll never make a dent in the consumer space that other manufacturers are gobbling up. Then all they have left is to defend business space which is a toss-up unless your company forces you to use a BB.
    Last edited by stuaw11; 10-12-09 at 12:10 PM.
    10-12-09 11:57 AM
  22. defcon3's Avatar
    @gmkahuna - the service and coverage are excellent no matter where. The big network operators Orange, T-Mo, DT, all have more than excellent 3G coverage. Changing the network op doesn't give me any advantage - all of them charge the BIS access extra.

    @stuaw11 - I like what you said "It was a good consumer model 5+ years ago, but they havent changed at all with the times" - so, so true! To build on that, @gmkahuna said something about the Mercedes-Benz and Yugo. Well, the difference is no longer this big as it used to be 5+ years ago and now you'd have to pick between a Mercedes, a BMW and Audi at best. The thing is, if a Mercedes is priced as a Maybach but offering the same old Mercedes models from 2003 - how does that fare against 2009-10 competition? Wouldn't it be funny?
    10-13-09 12:14 AM
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