Choosing a new smartphone: Blackberry or the others?

By on October 3, 2011
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Android, WP7 and iOS vs BB.

A friend of mine wants to finally catch up with the 21st century and buy a smartphone. He seems really interested in Blackberry because most of his colleagues use it, but he asked for my advice just in case.

At first I thought I’d tell him to just go with a Blackberry since the handsets are relatively cheap, and most of the people he wants to interact with will be using BBM anyways, so might as well roll with the crowd. However, if you look at the situation from an outside perspective, you’ll notice things you hadn’t before. For instance, he can get the basic BB plan from Etisalat starting from AED 49 per month, which gives him unlimited access to social services, including BBM; no internet access, though. Alternatively he can pay AED 29 per month and get 100MB data which gives him access to everything on a smartphone: emails, internet browsing, social services, etc.

Take it up a notch, and you have Etisalat’s AED 99 per month package for BlackBerry which gives you access to all the BB services up to 200MB, but for the same amount you can get 1GB of data on any other smartphone. Suddenly the BlackBerry doesn’t seem so attractive anymore.

Mind you all of the above charges are only for data plans, when you want to include talk time and SMS, you can go with the regular prepaid route, or get Du’s Elite 100 plan which also costs AED 100, but gives you 100 minutes talk time and 55 SMS national & international plus 100MB of data.

I’m not going to deny the charm of a physical keyboard, and the recent BlackBerry’s certainly seem to have some of the best keyboards in the industry. So why else go for a BlackBerry? There are a LOT of apps on Apple, Android and Windows marketplace. And if you really want a good quality gaming experience, the BlackBerry certainly can’t offer you that.

So unless you really, really like typing, I wouldn’t suggest a BlackBerry right now. To use a smartphone to its full potential, I’d suggest my friend, and anyone else for that matter, to go with Apple, Android or Windows Phone 7 based handsets, because they simply offer much, much more. Also, they’re more economical in the long run. Damn, no wonder BlackBerry’s in so much financial trouble.


From auditing to editing, I now test and analyze the latest gadgets and games instead of the latest financial statements. Both jobs are equally intense and rewarding. When I'm not burning up hardware in the name of science, you'll find me nuking in DOTA 2 or engineering in TF2.

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