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Is BlackBerry a Black Eye?

The New York Times has an article discussing how BlackBerry users are so embarrassed about their devices that they hide them when in public. Now I've complained loads about my BlackBerry but that means I admit to the world that I have one.

The folks in the Times' article are worried that Android and iPhone users will think less of them. Poppycock! These are the same folks that have to a fancy, new car when their old one was perfectly fine, and have to have everything their neighbors have. Shallow.

If your BlackBerry works, use it. I hate mine but I've had the option to get a new phone for free from Verizon for eight months and still haven't pulled the trigger.

In the meantime I'll use my BlackBerry openly, mainly for e-mail but less frequently for voice. I'd browse, but the Internet is pretty much useless on the darn thing.

Am I too good or too rough on the Blackberry? You tell me at dbarney@redmondmag.com.

Posted by Doug Barney on 10/29/2012 at 1:19 PM


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Reader Comments:

Mon, Oct 29, 2012 Humzah Khaial Burlington. Ontario

I agree with your analogy of the unrelenting social pressure that's led the masses to hoarding things they don't need with money they don't have just to keep up appearances. The smart phone has always been a status symbol, but the Times article takes it to unprecedented level of vanity. I disagree that the BlackBerry's browser is unusable, in their latest devices with OS7+, it is quite usable and comparable to, if not out performs, other smartphone browsers, including the iPhone. There's no doubt that RIM messed up; they were a generation too late to impress consumers, but the BB10 looks impressive and the PlayBook's (tablet) appearent flop could be just what sets them up with a healthy app cache to build significant momentum when launched Spring 2013. Your article and this comment were entirely consumed and composed on a BlackBerry 9900.

Mon, Oct 29, 2012 Karl Compton Houston

Doug, I think you have it about right. The Blackberry is still the best tool for what it was intended to do - really secure Outlook on your belt. For other things, not so great. In some fields, where security is king, like those of us subject to HIIPAA, the BB is hard to replace, and it is going to hang in for a while longer. A consultancy I was a partner at was dealer number 47 for the Blackberry. For most of a decade we were the largest reseller in Texas, and I've been strapped since 1999. Unfortunately, when the consumerization of the smartphone came along, RIM just didn't keep up,and I hate to say it, but I just don't think they are going to be able to get mind-share back, with BB10, no matter how wonderful it is. It is a sad thing, and it leaves me searching the wilderness for an Android phone on the right carrier that has a decent keyboard. God didn't intend people to type on flat glass, and I'll never subject myself to that, but RIM did leave us spoiled...

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