I’m In the Globe & Mail!

Today can’t get any more exciting than this.  I was interviewed last week by Michael Oliveira, who is a Technology Reporter for the Canadian Press.  He interviewed me last week regarding my thoughts on the upcoming BlackBerry PlayBook, which is scheduled to be released in April, and I’m featured in the article!  Please read it at the link below, and comment! 😀

RIM readies PlayBook launch but do consumers care?

Why RIM Will Never Win the Smartphone War

Research in Motion, the uber popular king of instant messaging among Twilight obsessed tweens, has officially admitted defeat in the smartphone race.  Why?  Because BoyGeniusReport announced today that R.I.M – more like R.I.P – has confirmed that their BlackBerry Messenger service is being rolled out to Android and iOS.

Why bother getting a new BlackBerry to have exclusive access to BBM when you can have access to it on your iPhone or Android phone??  Epic fail, Research in Motion.  Epic fail.  R.I.P.

BlackBerry Dakota: First Look

Touchscreen?  Check.  The 9800 form factor?  Check.  HD Recording?  Check.  BlackBerry OS 6.1?  Check. 

Finally.  RIM is back in the game.  Here is an exclusive look (thanks to BoyGenius) at the BlackBerry Dakota, and it looks sweet.  In my opinion, RIM should have ditched the Torch entirely and released this instead.  Here are the full specs:

  • Quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE
  • Tri-band UMTS
  • 5 megapixel camera with HD video recording, flash, and image stabilization
  • 4GB of built in storage, 768MB of RAM
  • 2.8-inch VGA 640×480 capacitive screen
  • WiFi b,g,n on 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequencies
  • 3G mobile hotspot!
  • MicroUSB port
  • Bluetooth
  • NFC
  • Magnetometer
  • Accelerometer
  • Proximity sensor
  • 10.5mm thin
  • Launches with BlackBerry OS 6.1
  • Does anyone else think this is the best BlackBerry that’s going to be released?  I do.  But they better release it soon.  Along the release date of the PlayBook would be perfect timing.  And on a side note, the NFC feature is a blatant rip-off of the Nexus S (sorry, had to add the obligatory negative BlackBerry comment).

    [Thanks BoyGeniusReport]

    iPhone VS Android VS BlackBerry

    Today, my Vegas buddy had to make the most important decision of her life: iPhone or BlackBerry.

    Kind of a long post, so here goes, and some background info too (Celine’s Facebook status is the reason why I’m inclined to post this – too many noobish comments made me laugh out loud at work while reading them…over 50 comments on that status, which I have not seen on any of my Facebook friends’ posts).

    For those who know me personally (or through countless Facebook status updates), I am obsessively obsessed with smartphones.  I’ve had about a good 10-12 smartphones in the past two years.  Hell, I even sleep with my cell phone (literally – it charges beside my pillow).  Name a phone that’s been released in the past two years, I’ve probably used it.  So by any means is this a fanboy, bashing any of the platforms or handhelds.  Each have their own strengths and weaknesses, and hopefully, this post should steer you in the right direction when deciding on which phone to choose.

    BlackBerry

    Let’s get the easy target out of the way.  With the plethora of smartphones available now in the marketplace (including Windows Phone 7), I’m dumbfounded to see people still obsessively flock to BlackBerry.  I just can’t understand the appeal as to why anyone in their right, sane minds would choose whatever RIM’s latest offering is.  I know most of you are dying to say, “But Aret!  You just had the Torch a month ago!  What gives!?!?!!111!!!”.  Yes, it’s true.  I used the Torch for roughly a month.  And the only reason why I did so was because I am the type that has to try out the latest gadget for a week to see if I can use it efficiently on a daily basis.  The first day, I was actually impressed.  But that did not last very long.  After a couple of days, I realized that literally everything about the phone could be summed up by a couple of words: sluggish and outdated.

    The only, and only (emphasis added) reasons why anyone should get this as an upgrade is BBM and BES.  BlackBerry Messenger has its moments, but realistically, it’s kind of pointless, considering every phone is capable of SMS.  “But Aret!  You knowz that youz can see if the other personz read your message????”.  Really?  The only use I can see coming out of this useless feature is stalker-like friends rabidly sending BBM’s to people, then salivating as they wait to see if the message was delivered, then read.  And if the other person fails to respond within one minute after reading it, they go all schitzo on you and start freaking out.  I have seen this way too many times, and it’s actually quite entertaining to hear stories about this.  Yeah, group chats are cool, as you can send pictures to each other and make comments on them, but it’s not worth the massive amount of battery that’s draining just to keep a couple of group chats open.

    The BlackBerry Torch is RIM’s current flagship device, and it could have been successful.  Two years ago. When it was launched, it was $199 on a three year contract.  WTF?  The iPhone 4 is superior in every possible way and specification, and it was $159 on a same term commitment.  I swear to God, the only people who would buy the Torch are people who have never used any other operating system (phone wise) in their life, are too afraid to switch platforms (even though every single other platform is significantly easier to navigate and control), and are just too comfortable with BBM.  And the keyboard on the Torch is nothing special either, as the keys are extremely recessed and too tight.  There is one positive thing I like about BlackBerry though:  the 9780 has the best keyboard I’ve used on any phone in my entire life.

    And for those who think I’m biased or whatever, here is a list of all the BlackBerry’s I’ve used until now:  BlackBerry Torch, Bold 9700, 8830 World Edition, 8730, Pearl Flip (worst phone I’ve used in my entire life), 8530 Curve, 8330 Curve.

    iPhone

    The iPhone 4, apart from the god-awful Antennagate issue, is probably one of the best smartphones made up to date.  The only serious contender to it currently is the HTC Evo 4G, and of course, it’s not available in Canada.  Go figure.

    The Retina Display – best display I’ve seen on a smartphone to date.  The A4 processor – makes everything seem blazingly fast.  The App Store – 300, 000 apps and still growing (compared to BlackBerry’s paltry 10,000 count).  Front and rear facing camera.  Video calls.  I can go on and on.  I don’t need to though.  Why?  Because it sells itself.  You don’t need to convince anyone to upgrade to the iPhone 4.  The iPhone 4 sold 1.7 million units in three days.  The BlackBerry Torch?  150,000.  Yeah, the iPhone 4 had a global launch, while the Torch was limited to the States, but that actually does matter.  If you’re limiting yourself to one part of the world, then don’t bother making bold statements, let alone make a product to directly compete with the iPhone (BlackBerry Storm, cough, cough).  The iPhone is the Holy Grail of smartphones, Android is Moses’ Ten Commandments, and BlackBerry, while once dominating the smartphone market, is slowly losing its market share to iOS and Android.  Let’s hope that the PlayBook (worst name for a professional product ever) saves RIM from impending doom.

    And yes, I’ve owned every version of the iPhone released, sans the 3GS, which I believe was the worst iPhone released to date.

    As much as I would like to review Android, I’m surviving off three hours of sleep.  That will have to wait until later tonight.  Let the flame wars begin!

    BlackBerry Playbook vs. Apple iPad

    Here’s a video comparison of the Playbook (worst name for a product) versus the Apple iPad when it comes to rendering web pages (speed, quality, etc.).  Can this actually be a BlackBerry product that is GOOD for once?  The answer is a surprising yes, as I have been blown away by the specs and overall ‘oomph’ the Playbook (worst name for a product) has been showing so far.  RIM had better release this soon, especially since Apple is likely planning on releasing the iPad v. 2.0 a day before the Playbook hits shelves to steal their thunder.

    One Step Forward, Two Steps Back…Sigh…

    RIM is really starting to piss me off.  Crackberry.com released an update (albeit leaked, go figure) to their core OS, BlackBerry 6, for their revered Bold 9700 after loyal fans waited months and months to check out the new OS.  Most people ditched their 9700’s and went with their new flagship device, the BlackBerry Torch 9800.  If you are planning on getting a Torch, DON’T!

    Roger’s just updated their website, where people will find that the price of the Torch has increased, NOT decreased.  Ugh.  Seriously?  I mean, it’s not even a super-powered device like the iPhone 4 or recent Android additions.  The iPhone 4 beats the Torch in every single specification, yet a 16Gb iPhone 4 goes for $159.99 on a three year contract. There is just no logic for this price increase.  The Torch was supposed to be a deliberate competitor to the iPhone, yet they pull off a stunt like this??  It just boggles my mind.

    I cannot wait to ditch my Torch and sink my teeth into webOS and the Palm Pre 2.  My prediction for RIM to go under?  2011 if they continue down this path.

    [via MobileSyrup]

    UPDATE: I’ve had to do a hard restart 4 times today, due to apps freezing.  For a smartphone in today’s market, this is just unacceptable.