1. Cheallaigh's Avatar
    My husband wants a new Blackberry for Christmas, but both he & I are clueless when it comes to this stuff. I'd love any advice you can give.

    He likes the look of and the reviews he's read of the Bold 9700, but his only requirements are that he be able to make/receive calls, check his work email (his company has the BB enterprise server), and surf the web in the US and abroad. He travels frequently to Europe, Asia & the Middle East (UAE mainly).

    We both currently have regular cell phones on a T-Mobile plan, but we're willing to switch providers if there is another one which has better coverage, especially outside the US. I've been completely confused when talking to my European friends with BBs who say it's as "easy" as swapping out SIM cards or unlocking codes. I'd like to avoid all that hassle.

    Please help me make an informed decision.

    12-10-09 01:43 PM
  2. leskchan's Avatar
    As for BB service plan, you really don't have a choice. He will need BB BIS Service with the BES add-on. You will just need BB Service. Whichever carrier you are on, that's what you have to pay.

    As for service provider. I am on Sprint because of price. For a family of 2, 1500 minutes, unlimited mobile to mobile (any carriers), nights starts a 7pm, unlimited data/text, is only $130/mo plus $15 for your BES addon. Sprint has global data service for additional $20. That means he has access to data when he travels, check world map coverage.

    As for phone, if you go with Sprint, then go with BB Tour World Phone (CDMA plus GSM).

    Others will recommend different carriers.
    12-10-09 01:56 PM
  3. ADGrant's Avatar
    There is no need fpr you to switch from T-Mobile for better coverage outside the US. In fact, I find that T-Mobile coverage outside the US is often better than T-Mobile coverage inside the US.

    Staying with T-Mobile will allow you to buy the Bold 9700 instead of the Tour. The Bold 9700 is currently the best BB on the market. It is faster than the Tour and has wi-fi (useful when travelling). It also has a trackpad instead of a trackball (the trackball on the Tour has had some issues).

    If you aren't happy with T-Mobile coverage inside the US, you can also get the 9700 on AT&T. However the T-Mobile version can make calls over wi-fi if you buy the right plan.

    If you do decide to switch to Sprint, the only Blackberry that will work outside the US is the Tour.

    BTW The reason people swap out SIM cards when travelling is to save money. Roaming charges add up when travellling.
    12-10-09 02:07 PM
  4. elvin1983's Avatar
    Yeah, to my understanding T-Mobile originated over in Europe, and they're one of the larger carriers over there, so you shouldn't have any problem with regards to signal.

    Like it's stated above, for your husband to be linked to his company's enterprise server, he will have to sign up for the BlackBerry Enterprise Service plan, which usually carries a $15 premium over the BlackBerry Internet Service plan, which T-Mo runs for $30. I would advise that he talks with his company's IT department before he signs up for this, since he'll probably want to make sure they'll allow his BB to be linked to their server. Corporations can be kind of testy about that stuff. Another thing to think about is that once his BB is on their Enterprise server, they have full control over his device. They can turn on and off different options at will. If they don't want him to be able to use the browser, they can turn that off, SMS Messages, that too. It's kind of a strange line, that if he were to purchase the phone himself, and pay for the plan, they shouldn't be able to do anything with the phone. That's why most BB's that are linked to Enterprise servers are purchased by the company itself, and then handed out to employees, making them company property, know what I'm saying?

    Whatever T-Mobile plan you currently have you can keep if you like the basic minutes/text package. If you were to upgrade your contract for another 2 yr term, you can get the phones at a discounted price, and all you'd have to do is add the BB plans to the account.

    Like it's stated above, the 9700 is the best BB out there for T-Mobile. It also does have the provisioning for the UMA (ability to make calls over WiFi) which is always helpful, and I don't think it counts towards your plan minutes. Unlocking the phone is fairly straight forward to do, and all it does is allow you to run a different provider's sim card in your device if you go out of the country. If you were to say purchase an international calling/data package, this wouldn't be an issue, since T-Mobile service is readily available to you over in Europe.
    12-10-09 02:36 PM