When BlackBerry, then known as Research In Motion, unveiled the P’9981 in collaboration with Porsche Design in October 2011, many people laughed. While non-billionaires aren’t really the target market for a phone with a £1250 price tag, most of us felt free to laugh at a Bold 9900 with a new software theme (on top of BlackBerry 7) and a metallic curve-phobic body that appeared capable of cutting through a steak. With the Z10 and Q10, it is evident that BlackBerry has changed and is capable of making phones that aren’t painful to use once again, and many of us assumed that the P’9981 and its ridiculous apostrophe had gone forever.
There are many aspects about BlackBerry devices which this site has constantly reminded us are negative, but I, as a Curve owner, love my phone. Now I will try to defend this marvelous piece of technology.
Admittedly there are some things about the BlackBerry which are not up to scratch e.g. the constant crashes and crappy cameras, but also things are also very well done e.g. the hardware QWERTY keyboards. This is not a phone built for gaming so, if that is what you have had in mind for your phone, do not buy a BlackBerry. The BB has a wide range of apps that are useful for many things but not that many games can be found in the App World so, like I say, consider every aspect before you run into buying a phone which you will later regret. It is a lot more about socialising and business ventures because it is easy to send and receive e-mails and to surf the web while on the go.
One of the key features of BB is BlackBerry Messenger (or BBM). This proprietary service is great for contacting your friends. There are many apps out there which are available cross-platform but these are not as recognisable as BBM and also can be slightly confusing and hard to use if you do not know what you are doing from the beginning. I have broken many a phone having not known how to work the phone as a whole or just a certain aspect of it and this is unacceptable for non-technically-minded people.
If you get a Curve, BlackBerry phones can be very inexpensive. These cost next to nothing compared to iPhones and some Windows Phones which can cost ridiculous amounts of money. There is no need at all to spend £500 on a phone, excluding the newest models and especially the sexy PorscheBerry. The “click… click… click…” noise that Hannah complained about last week does not annoy me and can be easily avoided. and and the buttons on the qwerty keyboard is just the right size for people with normal sized hands. It is the right size to fit in most pockets and is also very easy to use and very straight forward.
Teenagers enjoy their BlackBerries for many different reasons, mainly because they look stylish and are cool. Everybody who is anybody in a secondary school either has a BB or has owned one. It has become a necessary accessory for those who wish to become cool. Saying this, I also recognise that RIM will have to pull their fingers out of their arsesin order to stay alive and remain a major player in the smartphone market. There is a lot to be improved and fashions change but, at the moment BlackBerries are in and, like it or not, I don’t see desire for them fading anytime soon so get used to it.
Among teenagers, BlackBerry smartphones are all the hype at the moment, but I genuinely can’t help but ask myself why. While most people can see that RIM is on a knife edge and need to make drastic changes to survive, our demographic seems to be addicted to the Canadian QWERTY phones, with their outdated operating systems and poor user experiences. Why is this?
In my opinions BlackBerry phones (and PlayBooks) really aren’t great. People say that the BBM way of communicating is their favourite thing about the phones world, but this service ties you down to communicating with other BB users. Why not just download a cross-platform thing like WhatsApp? Then you will be able to communicate for free with people that have other phones too, such as Androids, iPhones and Windows Phones.
The performance of BlackBerry phones is often absolutely appalling, usually due to the outdated hardware, and my friends that have them are always complaining about how they crash far too regularly to be considered reliable. The camera quality is in a completely different league to other phones, and not in a good way. You cannot compare the quality with that of Nokia,HTC, Samsung and Apple cameras as it is just far too poor. The video quality is equally awful, almost embarrassing to watch once blown up to a decent size. The keys on the phone are small and hard to use at times.
Also (personal rant here) have you ever tried sharing a room with a BlackBerry user? When you’re trying to sleep at night and all you can hear is “click… click… click…” People claim that the keypad on the BlackBerry Bold doesn’t click, which for the record, is a lie. When the room is silent at night you can, and I repeat can, hear it. Now you may be thinking of a counter argument to do with the all-touch Torch and similar models due to the fact that they have software keyboards, however the touch panels are quite frankly of a severely sub-standard quality. In some of the older models the screen clicks as if it’s a button when you touch it. Resistive touch-screens do not deserve a place in this world.
BlackBerry devices are good as business phones due to the security and relative efficiency of the push email services, however as a phone for the youth, they are quite simply abysmal in my opinion. Much better alternatives are available at a wide array of price points, but BB diehards seem oblivious to this fact. I just wish that more people would think the same as me.
RIM, continually failing, have released this infographic describing the users of their devices. If you are for some reason still using a RIM thing, which one are you?
GoGo Girl, The Achiever: “Saving the day with a brilliant strategy”
Justin Steele, The Advocate: “Always ready to stick up for his friends”
Trudy Foreal, The Authentic: “Not afraid to call it as she sees it”.
Max Stone, The Adventurer: “Able to jump out of a plane…”
Engadget pointed out that this sounds suspiciously like RIM itself, so we can only hope that with BB10 they will hire ad guys who are actually beyond adolescence.
Earlier this week, RIM quietly announced that Thorsten Heins, their Chief Operating Officer, would replace Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis as the sole CEO of the troubled company behind the BlackBerry. The Bavarian has been at the company for just 4 years and has still yet to even see the OS of the future that is BBX BB10 in action. He seems rather boring and doesn’t see the need for drastic change in Waterloo. What planet is this guy on? I wish him the best of luck in turning things around, but I’m not too optimistic. Watch his official introduction video below and judge Thorsten for yourself.
In the tech world there is a large amount of hate towards Research In Motion, the makers of such pieces of shit such as the BlackBerry PlayBook and the Bold 9900. I hate RIM, as do most of my colleagues, for a number of good reasons. They are the company that everyone loves to hate and they don’t do a lot to help themselves.