Monday, October 15, 2012

LIKE MYSPACE USERS WHO STILL CHAT ON AOL INSTANT MESSENGER:  The NYT checks in on people who still own Blackberry devices, now that its market share has gone from 50 percent to less than 5 percent of the U.S. smartphone market over the past three years.


  1. I use a Blackberry for work, even though I own a personal iPhone. I like the separation of church and state that imposes. (Also, the iPhone is less effective as a push e-mail device than the Blackberry.)

  2. gretchen7:54 PM

    This is sort of hilarious. I've had an iPhone instead of a Blackberry for a couple of years and I still think that it's easier to type on a Blackberry - but the iPhone is so much better for everything else. And I prefer to have work and personal stuff on the same device because it simplifies my life and prevents me from lugging around multiple chargers. (Truly, if someone could invent a Universal Charger for Everything, it would change my life.) But at my law firm, there are still a lot of die-hard Blackberry users.

    On an unrelated technology note: has the commenting software changed? For a while, every time I'd click on the comments, they'd just vanish. (Probably good for productivity, but bad for entertainment value!) They are obviously not doing that now. Did anyone else have that problem?

  3. christy in nyc7:57 PM

    I'm only a year into iPhone ownership after having a Blackberry. I do not separate church and state...I just turn off the work email on the weekend. Much easier to do on the iPhone. Agree that the pushing of emails and other alerts was way better on the Blackberry, and I also miss the buttons. It's not that bad, better than I expected, but I just really like buttons. But the worst part of my Blackberry was the track pad. It sucked.

  4. Adam B.7:57 PM

    The commenting software changed in late September; we were forced to do so because our previous platform exited the business. I'm glad it's working.

  5. Alan Sepinwall7:57 PM

    Hey, *I* still use AOL Instant Messenger! Much more reliable than GChat, Facebook Chat, etc.

  6. push e-mail on iphone
    or the lack thereof
    it's more of a feature
    than it is of a bug.

  7. isaac_spaceman8:00 PM

    The thing is, from a corporate Darwinist perspective, RIM is a company that really ought to go out of business. Eight or ten years ago BlackBerry made the strategic decision that it would not make its developer package available for makers of casual games (e.g. Bejeweled) because it wanted to sell itself as a business tool instead of an all-purpose device. This was a huge boon to companies like Samsung, who recognized that people who use phones for business still had those phones in their pocket in airports and taxicabs and at home, where they might want a game or two. I can't remember if RIM just wrote off the business (insane) or changed its position on games (not insane).

    But it doesn't matter, because a few years later, RIM heard that Apple was making a device that was a combination of phone, workspace, and entertainment console, and decided that BlackBerry's security advantages and tactile keyboard would outweigh literally every other factor in smartphone choice (versatility, weight, design, interface, speed, etc.). It's one thing to recognize and build on one's own advantages. It's completely another to ignore the obvious demand for other people's advantages. If RIM did not have this fetishistic belief that phones are tools alone and should never ever be fun, pretty, fast, intuitive, or responsive to the creativity of users and developers, it wouldn't be in such bad shape right now. The fact that it made that same mistake twice suggests that it should not get a third chance.

  8. girard318:00 PM

    I remember when my Blackberry made me feel so "in touch" and "cutting edge". The I ran into a guy with an early model iPhone. It's amazing how fast things look useless.

  9. This was a huge boon to companies like Samsung, who recognized that people who use phones for business still had those phones in their pocket *during meetings*, where they might want a game or two. / fixed

  10. I also have a personal iphone and a work blackberry. Totally prefer the separation.

  11. I've never had a blackberry, but I also hate typing on a screen "keyboard." So when I (finally) got my first smart phone a few months ago, I found the Droid 4 on Motorola, with a slide-out keyboard. So it's possible to combine the two. And I'm happy.

  12. bellawilfer8:01 PM

    I'm confused about this article. Why don't some of the people they quote as being ashamed of their BlackBerries (BlackBerrys?) just get iPhones? (I understand some people have to have theirs for work, but get a separate personal phone if you're that stressed out about it). It's certainly interesting to note, as girard31 says, "how fast things look useless," but the comments from shamed BlackBerry users feel a little silly.

  13. isaac_spaceman8:01 PM

    Because an iPhone plus an iPhone voice+data plan will cost you $1500-$2000 in the first year, whereas your work BlackBerry gives you free voice and free data? It's perfectly reasonable for a person to say "this is embarrassing, but not $2000 embarrassing," or even "I can't afford not to be embarrassed."

  14. Jenn C8:04 PM

    Funny, just yesterday I got an email from corporate about my bberry. I opted to keep it--I don't want work stuff on my iPhone. We use a gmail-based email system and having it on my iPhone affects my email, contacts, and calendar. Much easier just having a dedicated device for work.

  15. Marnie Kaplan8:27 PM

    Gretchen--I was having the same problem last week. Comments would disappear and the site would sometimes not be viewable either. Now it's working great...

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