iPhone vs BlackBerry
iPhone 3G Torture Tests - PC World
This hub is in answer to a request made by barryrutherford - a fellow hubber. I appreciate the request and I hope that my answer will be just what he is looking for. Thank You.
Comparing the iPhone and the BlackBerry is a huge challenge. Both cell phones are giants in the cell phone industry. There are similarities and there are glaring differences. Over the past couple of years however, many of the features that set them apart have been dwindling.
The Blackberry has a much longer history than the iPhone. The Blackberry 7920 was the first quad-band and the first BlackBerry to include a color screen that actually garnered a favorable review for clarity and image quality. Bluetooth was also added with this model.
The QWERTY keyboard on BlackBerry cell phones helped give them the overwhelming public appeal - especially to the upwardly mobile crowd. The drawback was the size. Other mobile phones were getting smaller and smaller and the BlackBerry appeared to be quite bulky. It is important to remember that at that time BlackBerry cell phones were aimed at the business market.
I feel that the modern day iPhone has right the opposite issue - especially the first generation iPhone. Glitz and glamour abounded but productivity features was were sorely lacking. My iPhone 3G is gorgeous but I miss my Windows Mobile features such as a Tasks list and copy/cut/paste. Yes there are 3rd party apps that can be downloaded from the App Store but they are just not the same.
RIM started looking towards the consumer market to expand the brand with the BlackBerry 7100 series. The QWERTY keyboard was reduced to a QWERTY-like keyboard. Each key was used for two letters and with the use of predictive-text was still easier to use than a keyboard with three letters per key. The BlackBerry was becoming more like other cell phones due to the smaller size made possible by the smaller keyboard.
This is an interesting twist to the cell phone story. The Blackberry had to become more consumer-like to gain popularity and the iPhone was popular because it was so different than any other cell phone.
Business people just want to be stylish too. I believe that cell phone manufactures need to acknowledge this fact. So many cell phones are used to conduct business yet there is a huge battle waged between IT departments and end users. Security is one of the major issues. End users want to use chat, they want to take digital photos, they want to extend memory with SD Cards, they want to download music and 3rd party software and they want all of this in a modern updated package.
Rim started ramping up the competition with the BlackBerry 8000 series. Many improved features including high quality screens, increased memory, GPS, cameras were added, the trackwheel was replaced by a pretty little "pearl" trackball, chat software was added, and a memory card slot was added.
As a fan of touchscreen devices I feel that the advantage goes to the iPhone to this point. I prefer to have the business-like features of the blackberry but the look, the size and the interface of the iPhone has the cool factor. I also prefer the internet experience provided by the iPhone. The iPhone 3G bumped up the speed of the phone and the GPS ability pushed me over the edge (no pun intended).
The horse race is heating up again. Rim is working diligently to be a true competitor to the Apple iPhone. The BlackBerry has gone 3G and the 9000 series will have updated features that will surely raise the stakes. The BlackBerry Bold is set to be available in September 2008 through AT&T, T-Mobile and Rogers. The actual release date is up in the air and no one is really sure. This is unfortunate but this situation is common with many electronic device releases. Rumors abound but all we can do is wait.
Other BlackBerry models slated for introduction to the anxious cell phone consumer market are the "Kick Start" (the first BlackBerry flip phone) and the one I am looking forward to - the BlackBerry "Thunder" which will be the first BlackBerry with a touchscreen.
The iPhone 3G has had its problems - one is with connection issues and several high profile bloggers have gone as far as returning their iPhone 3G. I read Matthew Miller's blog on "The Mobile Gadgeteer" where he talks about why he and others returned their iPhone 3G.
On August 28th, 2008, Mathew Miller also blogged about the BlackBerry Bold having the same 3G connection issues as the iPhone 3G.
I believe that no cell phone will satisfy all of my wants and needs. I own an iPhone 3G and I have not owned a BlackBerry. There are features of both that I like so if in the future I find an unlocked BlackBerry at a great price I may buy it and simply switch my Sim card between them. Until then I will continue researching cell phones that interest me.