October 14th was a monumental day in the history of RIM. It was the day that the iPhone 4s dropped, and was available on all 3 major wireless carriers in the USA. This was significant because many people finally had no more excuse to discard the glorified bricks known as BlackBerrys and upgrade to the next generation. I was one of those people. I didn’t convert until that Monday (Thanks, UPS), but the scene with Blackberry was abysmal. I saw tumbleweeds blow by BBM. My contact lists and recent updates looked like a post apocalyptic dystopian future. Purple BBM blasts rained down from the Internet heavens, as everyone began the mass exodus from the struggleberry. As someone who praised RIM in the past, why did I leave? Glad you asked, I’ll explain below:
The bb clock freeze of death
I used to have a Palm Pre. That phone was ok, but a combination of a parent company who didn’t give a shit about it, coupled with flimsy hardware, made it fail. This phone used to freeze on occasion, and after years with Palm, I was done and wanted to move on to the greener pastures of BBM and RIM. I’ve had this phone for over a year, and I’ve NEVER had a phone that froze as much as this one! The constant battery pulls. Clicking on an icon and the program takes a year to open. Then there’s the clock (or hourglass depending on which blackberry you own). This display signifies that the phone is working towards a solution, with an unknown completion time. One time, this phone froze for 45 minutes. No gas, forty five MINUTES of straight clock spins! This severely limited and hindered my production. I’ve been in situations where I had to make important calls, and the phone would freeze. No incoming or outgoing calls could get through. All I was left with was a face full of struggle, and a “smart” phone that told me “Uncaught Exception” and #kanyeshrugged!! This is the last thing you want to happen when you’re on a global conference call and you are the meeting organizer! This phone became a liability, and I can no longer coexist in mediocrity.
Purple Messages aka the Broadcast Message
I abhor the purple message as much, if not more than the infinite BB clock. I thought once Facebook converted to condensed email notifications, that I was finally rid of the mass promotion tools of the thirsty. I was wrong, however, because the purple message gave promoters a new lane to tell you about their bottle specials, what’s poppin this weekend, etc. To those who send one a week and avoid spamming, I salute you. To those who don’t, you are no better than the people who STILL send out mass holiday text wishes every year!
Not only am I bombarded with promotion, I get bombarded with chain letters, yes chain fucking letters in 2011! I know the majority of my BBM list is intelligent, so I don’t know why they would send me a purple message saying that smilies would automatically add to my BB if I forwarded that message, or that BBM would work again if I sent along this purple fuckery with a phantom rep #. A quick story: so I got one of these chain messages from a friend. It was one of those “forward this and watch the magic work” type messages. The conversation went like this:
Me: Why are you forwarding this?
Her: I’m just trying to help out and pass the message
Me: Did you fact check this? Did you look this up to see if it was accurate before forwarding?
Her: Nah I just sent it out. Whatever ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Mr Nice Phone
I’m a tech guy. I stay abreast of all the new phones, computers, and anything else under the sun. Speaking objectively, blackberry is below the curve. How are you introducing touch screens years after it became cool?! How have you not addressed the freezing issue, where other smart phone don’t have this issue?! There’s no worse feeling than wanting to surf the net real quick for an answer, looking at your blackberry browser, and shedding a single thug tear, because you know that browser leads to the World Wide Struggle. Then you look over at the Android and iPhone users, and they’re so jovial! Sun in their face, wind blowing through their hair, and the latest Hip Hop party anthem blasting as they click their applications and have an unhindered mobile web experience. I was SICK! Here’s a secret that most people will front about: a lot of Blackberry users know their phone is inferior, but will ride against iPhone because it’s commercial. Android is seen as a cool alternative so you won’t hate on that, but because of the Apple cult-like subculture, people want to rage against the machine. So it’s fashionable to say “fuck an iPhone”, because you don’t want to be seen as a “follower”. I hated because 1) it was easy and 2) my provider didn’t offer the iPhone. All it took was a year of StruggleBerry problems, and for Sprint to get the iPhone for me to join the Dark Side. Blackberry was behind in technological advances, and I was tired of being in the stione ages.
Loss of Reliability
If it was one saving grace that RIM and the Blackberry had, it was reliability. After that huge fiasco with the global network outages, that was the final straw. My voicemail reset for no reason. My emails and texts remained in the queue for hours. Many a business transaction were held up, and this isn’t the first time RIM had a snafu with service! Let’s not even talk about my now suspect battery life! Between all the freezing and data struggles, the battery life evaporates! You could be using a flip phone, but reliability can justify that selection. Now that the reliability rug has been compromised, that placed the final nail in the coffin of my relationship with RIM.
I won’t shit on Blackberry completely like others. The physical keyboard is the best out of any mobile device I’ve ever used. Once you became a pro at typing blindly, there was no turning back! BBM will also be missed. The free messaging service that was GLOBAL! You changed the game, and when eventually RIM offers you as an app on iOS, I will download you expeditiously! Ease of email was also another major win. Your losses outweigh your wins though RIM. You have been late like CNN for too long, and it’s time for the kid to upgrade his life.
RIM, when you sit back and think of all the fails you failed to address with the Blackberry, you will regret it. Maybe not today. Maybe not tomorrow, but soon, and for the rest of your life.
Sprint, Apple, iPhone Nation: I’m coming home!
Taking my talents to Cupertino,