Alright just thought I'll update you guys and tell you what I felt set it apart from other phones and pdas. Finally got a Blackberry Curve 8320.
I got the pics off random websites and take note that the BB is highly customizable in terms of looks. Right now mine is configured to look a bit like the iPhone's layout
. Not an Apple fan but love their look ;P
First of all:1) Interface
Was a real breeze to pick up and the keyboard layout is fantastic. Other phone manufacturers seem to be catching on but I can type pretty fast with my Blackberry at the moment. Whole system was intuitive, quick and fast responding
Trackball was great as well.
A bit confused why there wasn't a dedicated fullstop button though and you require to press alt-m to do a full stop.2) Push E-mail
One of the main focuses of the BB devices and it performs beautifully. Often reaching my BB first before my computer.
Can view most major attachments including Microsoft Office with no problems.
However can't display HTML e-mail (or I haven't found out how to) so you'll see a bit of links here and there for those html based ones.
This kept loading e-mail a real breeze.
I have tested it with pop3 e-mail, gmail and yahoo though it also supports Outlook synchronization.3) Stability
Now i've read a lot of reviews on mobiles based on Windows Mobile and heard their crashes and issues with the platform. I haven't tested this yet but it seems to be common place from the number of reviews I made and the experiences from my friends.
My blackberry has crashed....zilch nada. Only slowdown I felt was when the reception cut out midway and the loading will jam for a short while until it figures out that the reception is gone
. I think about 3 secs then it's back to normal.4) Blackberry Messenger/Googletalk/Yahoo
This is truly a god send.
Free IMing with file send capabilities and I really really like the feature where it would show via little icons whether it's been delivered or read and even when the person is typing.
Also it has pretty good integrated support for Googletalk and Yahoo. I haven't tried Fring yet for comparison but as far as I can concerned IM wise had no problems using them and pretty zippy.
I have cut down my sms charges significantly with this feature.5) Battery Life
I average around 2 days with quite intensive use. Frantic typing and lots and lots of GPRS surfing.
My colleague who uses a Windows Mobile when doing the same goes flat in about a day.
Blackberries are known for its superb power efficiency for the functions it provides.6) GPRS Speed
Blackberry's server optimizes web content very well over low bandwidth networks so that surfing is fine and even downloading attachments aren't too bad. I have not tried 3g yet but as compared to my WAP phone, it's miles faster.
This is pretty useful if you're on the go and you don't always have EDGE/3g coverage.Gripes
I do have some gripes however. Most of the BB phones do not have 3g support. The 8707g is the only local one with it and I am unsure of how good it is. They do have EDGE support though but that's useless since Digi uses Edge but has no Blackberry service. The devices with WIFI ability are also kinda pointless as the Blackberry is such a low powered device designed to save battery that the speed it gets from WIFI without the BIS optimization is pretty shitty.
This will be rectified in the 9xxx series coming out next year which does have 3g support. And it looks pretty sexy too.
Also the Blackberry browser unlike all its other apps is pretty shitty. Websites display not so well and meh well it's just not a great experience on it. You can use Opera Mini to compensate which is available for free but I find surfing on a small device a bit finicky. I think if you really want mobile web browsing, then the Iphone beats it hands down.Conclusion
If you want a business phone with superb communication abilities and functionality then get a Blackberry. Its simple and does its job well and isn't too pricey. The Curve range also has a pretty decent camera and media players so its not strictly business and I have good fun with it as well.
However if you want something with all the bells and whistles and with the ooh aah factor then the BB is not for you and you're probably better off getting an Iphone or a beefier pocket pc. But I will also keep watch on the 9xxx series on the BB which seems to continue where the 8300 series left off which is also catering to the consumer as opposed to just the business man.
Btw third party support is surprisingly not bad at all for the Blackberry. I found apps to do all sorts of things from SSH and RDP to games and such so there's no shortage of apps out there which pleasantly surprised me.This post has been edited by Reuben: Apr 25 2008, 04:14 PM