Why all the BlackBerry hate?

Is there a serious case of BlackBerry hatred going on in the tech world? Don Reisinger, who plans to switch from an iPhone 3G to a BlackBerry Bold, thinks so.

I told my Twitter followers Monday that I've decided to swap my iPhone 3G for a BlackBerry Bold. Though I believe the iPhone 3G is a nice device that has gotten better with age, it's time for a change.

BlackBerry Bold
Should we hate you, BlackBerry? RIM

Some of my followers disagreed. In a matter of seconds after telling them that I was switching to a Bold, I was inundated with comments discrediting the BlackBerry. Some folks mentioned the issues they have with it, while others decided to be more biting.

One commenter, "aphony," replied that it was "awful" that I was switching to the BlackBerry Bold. He said that he gets "nauseous when someone claims they don't like the iPhone."

"MarkCharge" said that I was "an idiot" for switching to the Bold. "Rahulunbhatia" told me that he "has used both" and "the iPhone is much better." "JKing29" said that I'm "crazy" for "going from a good phone to a bad phone."

Though there were a few folks who said that I'd be happier with the Bold, the overwhelmingly negative responses got me thinking: what's up with all the BlackBerry hating?

I've had an iPhone 3G since its release and I've tested the BlackBerry Bold. I like them both. Am I alone?

What I like (and don't) about the iPhone

The iPhone 3G, my current mobile phone, is a fine device. I love that I have my iTunes library at my fingertips. I enjoy exploring all the apps in the App Store. And I especially like the iPhone's Web browser. In my testing, it's second to none.

But my biggest complaint about the iPhone is its virtual keyboard, which I've never been able to get used to. The allure of the touch-screen has worn off and I'm left wondering why I ever wanted to "swipe" and "pinch" in the first place. I've also had trouble with sound quality on my iPhones. Both my first-gen model and the iPhone 3G have poor speakerphones (something I use often). I'm generally unimpressed with the call quality.

What I like (and don't) about the BlackBerry Bold

The BlackBerry Bold is a slick mobile phone that has all the extras I'm looking for, including slightly more-refined Contacts and Calendar features and a physical keyboard. I also tend to like the BlackBerry's OS more than the iPhone's.

But my desire to have a Bold goes beyond the simple stuff. It has a better battery life in my testing. Its e-mail program, something I use every hour, is much better than the iPhone's. Plus, the Bold allows me to record video, which is a big plus.

I still have my reservations, though. RIM's app store, the BlackBerry App World, isn't nearly as user-friendly or filled with high-quality app's as Apple's store. The device's browser is pathetic compared to the iPhone's. And the fact that I can't have easy access to iTunes is an issue. Worse, it's an extremely expensive device. I would be forced to pay $549.99 plus tax to get it, since I don't quality for two-year contract discounts.

But even with those issues, the BlackBerry Bold is still an outstanding device that deserves all the praise it receives. Some might find reasons why the iPhone is better than the Bold, but in my testing of both phones, I found that the latter is better suited for me.

Realizing that, I'm hard-pressed to find evidence supporting the aforementioned statements made by my followers about the Bold. The Bold isn't an "awful" mobile phone, it isn't a second-rate device compared to the iPhone, and it isn't lacking value. And it most certainly doesn't warrant the kind of distaste some folks harbor whenever it's compared to the iPhone.

As far as I'm concerned, it's a (slightly) more appealing mobile phone.

Check out Don's Digital Home podcast, Twitter stream, and FriendFeed.

 

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