BB v iPhone4

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    Posted: 23 July 2010 12:30 PM

    OK here’s the deal. I don’t have an iPhone, yet. My own phone is ‘minimal. If you remember the article from a while back where the author compared kinds of cell phones to cars. Well my existing phone is Al Bundy’s ‘72 Dodge Dart. It’s old, slow, nothing works, but it makes calls and once my contract is up I will upgrade. Everything is on hold for 4 more months.

    Anyway, my company just gave me a BlackBerry 8900. I’d used a 4 year old BB before which I despised but it finally gave up the ghost so they gave me this new one. I was hoping that the issues with the earlier unit were due to it being an earlier version.  Well, I’ve had the new one a week now and it’s just as bad as the old one.

    The screen is too small and hard to read.
    The browser is a joke. Web pages are rendered in full with microscopically small text and the process for magnifying it is astoundingly kludgy.
    The keyboard is tiny, the letters are printed in silver on black plus most of the keys have additional numbers printed in red so the keyboard is hard to read.
    Typing is quite difficult with normal sized fingers.
    Using symbols or numbers is amazingly kludgy.
    Set up is totally non intuitive. It took me two days to get my e-mail routed to the phone. It took a day to figure out that the only way to change the desktop picture is by taking a picture with the camera and applying it. If I want a blue desktop, find a blue wall and photograph it.
    Controls are hidden in multiple layers of folders with names that are no help. (Who knew that “Profiles” was how loud your ring is.)
    When in the pouch it randomly locks the screen and a multi-key combination is required to unlock it.
    I finally disabled as many of the buttons on the sides as I could and hid as many of the Apps as I could. I’m having to ‘dumb down’ this smart phone to make it usable.

    My question is this:
    Has anyone out there had occasion to use both a BlackBerry and an iPhone. How do they compare? Is the iPhone really better? I was all psyched up to get an iPhone but this experience with the BlackBerry has been so unpleasant that I’m questioning whether I want to get a Smart Phone at all. I’ve played with iPhones for a couple of minutes and they seemed quite nice but the BlackBerry seemed OK for the first few minutes too, until I had to actually do something with it.

    [ Edited: 23 July 2010 01:02 PM by geoduck ]


    The mark of the immature man is that he wants to die nobly for a cause, while the mark of a mature man is that he wants to live humbly for one.
    J.D.Salanger/Wilhelm Stekel

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    Posted: 23 July 2010 02:57 PM #1

    I’ve used both BB and iPhone.
    Pinch to zoom is great for making things to small easier to read.
    BB browser is a joke!  iPhone’s browser is great.

    I can’t stand typing on BB (I just feel like I’m squishing keys), but I’m meh about the iPhone onscreen keys.  I’m a bit slow typing, and switching between numbers letters and symbols is a bit kludgy.  I suppose I’d be faster if I could trust auto-correct, but it can’t seem to learn the jargon.  I hear iOS 4 handles auto-correct better.

    Setup was painless.  Eventually when I wanted to sync my google email and calendars, I had to google how to setup iPhone mobile sync, but that was straightforward.  In iOS 3, all images you can use come from the Photos app, so the blue background photo may still apply… you could I suppose find an image on the web and download it to the Photos app.

    At least with antennagate, you have 30 days to return the phone if you don’t like it.

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    Posted: 23 July 2010 03:00 PM #2

    What kind of BlackBerry?  My roommate has a BB Storm which he manages to use well enough.  The interface is a little different than I’d expect because of the click-screen thing.  He manages to use it well enough though admits the browser isn’t the best.  But before that he had a Palm Treo with tons of stuff on it and reminders appearing all day, so I imagine he’s used to managing over-complexity.

    The iPhone browser is much better, but I don’t have enough experience with BBs in general to say more than that.  I know some people just can’t handle features on phones.  My dad buys the simplest phone he can get, no camera if possible, just so he can make phone calls without problem.  I, however, find that the iPhone is very well organized and the BB looks OK but not as obvious to my iPhone-trained eyes (again meaning the BB Storm, smaller BBs with the scroll ball are harder to navigate).

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    Posted: 23 July 2010 03:11 PM #3

    Ah yes, this was a BlackBerry Curve 8310… so not sure about the newer BBs.  A friend is excited about the rumored BB 9800 with touchscreen and slideout keyboard.

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    Posted: 23 July 2010 05:34 PM #4

    webjprgm - 23 July 2010 06:00 PM

    What kind of BlackBerry?.

    It’s a BB8900. Old classic square style BB with the fixed keyboard, tiny trackball and the tiny screen.

    webjprgm - 23 July 2010 06:00 PM

    My dad buys the simplest phone he can get, no camera if possible, just so he can make phone calls without problem.

    That’s exactly what I’ve had up until now; the bottom end cheapest phone I could get. But I’ve seen enough, both with others iPhones and my brother with his Android, that I get how a SmartPhone could be quite useful and a lot of fun. However, the BB made me question this because everything is so bloody hard to do.

    [ Edited: 23 July 2010 05:46 PM by geoduck ]


    The mark of the immature man is that he wants to die nobly for a cause, while the mark of a mature man is that he wants to live humbly for one.
    J.D.Salanger/Wilhelm Stekel

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    Posted: 23 July 2010 09:44 PM #5

    Had a 8700. Okay for e-mail and phone. Sucked for pretty much everything else. Replaced by a 9700 Bold. Okay for e-mail and phone. Better than 8700 for viewing documents, but still lightyears behind iPhone.

    Have iPhone 3G. Once used to the BB keyboard it isn’t so bad, but the iPhone auto-correct can help speed up typing on that software keyboard. Browser is blows away the Bold. Navigation of the iPhone is much simpler (touch vice scrolling to the various apps). Battery life is better on the Bold than the 3G.

    Learning the various shortcuts on the BB does help.

  • Posted: 24 July 2010 02:05 AM #6

    Like the OP, I had a BB and liked it a lot.
    My next phone was an iPhone, because it was so revolutionary compared to the BB two/three years ago. Well, all my friends have BBs and slowly, as their contracts finish, each is converting to the iPhone.
    There really is no comparison. The BB OS has essentially been exactly the same for years. It takes a million clicks to do what you want, and unless RIM gets their act together, I think it’s a very real possibility that they aren’t around in 5 years.

    So, to answer the question, there really is, in my very humble opinion, absolutely no advantage to having a BlackBerry. The iPhone has the BBs ‘best’ feature: push email, and it works great. The keyboard on the iPhone is more than just manageable, it’s great. Autocorrect in iOS4 really improves it drastically. I find that I can type faster on my iPhone than on my old BB, though admittedly I hear those keyboards got better too. But then again, even if it was better, you still won’t be writing a novel on your smartphone, and I prefer the larger screen to the ugly buttons.

    I have a small soft spot in my heart for RIM, but like I said there really is no comparison and in my mind the two products aren’t even in competition. RIM is out, Apple and Google (another discussion for another time…) are in.

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    Posted: 20 January 2011 05:49 PM #7


    Can someone tell me if the iPhone has push email like the Blackberry? i.e. when an email is sent to you, the server detects you have an email and immediately sends it to your phone.

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    Posted: 20 January 2011 06:44 PM #8

    The short answer: Yes.

    The long answer: See short answer.


    Laurie Fleming - the singing geek


  • Posted: 24 March 2011 06:51 PM #9

    I had an BB until my mom broke her phone then I got a new phone and she got a new (well new to her Blackberry LOL) I loved BBM it is really cool and useless at the same time (like 90% of tech out there) in the real world. I did love the push email it had. I got my congratulations you one a brand new [insert product name here] emails right to my phone. I ended up paying out the but for a new phone to replace my old black berry. Feeling the need to move forward I went with an android phone and i have push email for my Gmail and school email accounts.  I think Iphone has that feature or at least an app for that. It is becoming a standard feature on smartphones.