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  • Blackberry

    A very popular PDA cum phone device at this moment. Any Blackberry users here? Please share why this beats most other smart phones.

  • #2
    Sorry. Sensitive work-related issue, thus must remove my post
    Last edited by vernis; 06-01-2005, 02:38 PM.


    • #3
      As I understand it, Blackberry's strength lies in mobile e-mail. It works a bit differently from other pda/phones.

      Did you read the article in the most recent Digital Life? The writer had a really bad experience trying to get her Blackberry up and working.


      • #4
        Found it!

        Jan 5, 2005
        guest column

        A life in the days of a computer idiot

        I fell in love with the Blackberry, but my adventure with the gizmo has turned out to be a geek tragedy of sorts, writes IRENE HOE

        A little technology is a dangerous thing. And the littler it gets, the more it endangers your mental health, it seems.

        Especially when it is cute, fits in the palm of your hand, is called a Blackberry (BB), and promises to keep you connected wherever you are in the world - satisfying an absurd desire for which I have been duly punished.

        So why didn't I just take my 17-inch G4 Powerbook computer on my travels? Not being blessed with Arnold Schwarzenegger's enviable upper body strength, I just couldn't face lugging my beautiful Macintosh around.

        Take the Treo, urged several ardent Treophiles.

        Call me a BB Bimbo, but I simply didn't like the Treo's silvery look and its big fat antenna. And I adored the BB. It was streamlined, felt good in my hands, and had its own backlight.

        Warning bells

        The two BBphiles I consulted were equally effusive. But neither they nor I fully realised the chasm that existed between their experience as corporate BB users - and what I would suffer as an individual user.

        I should have heeded the warning bells. For starters, it took me five or six trips to StarHub's Plaza Singapura shop to get my BB. Hardly anyone I spoke to there even knew how the BB actually worked, (ding! ding!) though they were all keen to sell me one.

        One StarHub guy said: 'Oh, you need to have an existing Internet account first'. Not true.

        It needed another trip to Plaza Singapura to confirm this.

        You have to set up the BB yourself to link the Internet, said another Star-Hub guy...(ding! ding!)

        Was he really expecting me to pay close to $800 for a toy that came with no manual ('Oh, you have to go online and read it there') and which no one present in the shop knew how to set up ('Er, you just go online, l a h'), and for which StarHub seemed to have no one available to explain how to set up and use

        They did have BB experts, I was told. But they might as well have been on the moon.

        You'd have thought the clanging of the bells should have woken me up by this time.

        So I explained that I was still a dial-up user and it would take me forever to download a manual to my Powerbook and print it out. Moreover, I didn't have a printer.

        By the way, StarHub doesn't print out manuals for buyers even if you ask nicely. I will spare you the mindless minutiae of such close encounters with StarHub staff.

        Finally, after I spoke to a man at StarHub's customer service centre at Plaza Singapura, I was promised that he would get me someone who did know how to set up the device.

        I called 1633 and asked if I should bring my Powerbook. No need, I was told.

        Geek tragedy

        At one point in this geek tragedy, it did occur to me that I'd received more technical help than this at Tangs when buying a $25 hair dryer.

        Tangs' salespeople have met requests to change the plug, get a different colour hairdryer, or find the appropriate adapter for the country where I would use the thing.

        But back at the StarHub sweatshop on my last visit: finally all seemed to be done and I was told that in an hour or so, I would be able to use my new toy to send and receive e-mail. And I could go online and sync it with my laptop.

        Not in sync

        OK, I said, can you walk me through the procedure, so I can write down how to do it and won't screw up when I sync it with my Powerbook.

        Oh, it doesn't sync with the Powerbook, I was told. It syncs only with PCs.

        Expletives deleted.

        I know. I know. At this point, I should have just flung the object of my desire back at them. But I was besotted.

        So what did I do? I committed the ultimate heresy in the Manual of Mac Usage - I switched to the Dark Side. I got a Fujitsu Lifebook, a baby PC laptop which kinda looks like my Powerbook (now rehomed with a confirmed Mac addict).

        So now I had a BB, a PC laptop and an archaic Internet connection. Wireless broadband was the next logical step. I went for StarHub as I already had its cable service at home.

        The technician came over, plugged in the wireless router, booted up my baby computer and...NOTHING. (ding! ding!) I agreed to take StarHub's wireless card.

        The long and short of it was that later the Fujitsu guy showed there was nothing wrong with the Centrino wireless card in my new notebook and I got StarHub to take back the wireless card the technician had sold me.

        And then it was only a mere three hours on the phone with the StarHub guy on 1633 before I was online and wireless.

        But I still had to get help to get my BB synced with my laptop. That took another 1633 guy. But despite his assurances that all was well, I am not synced.

        Why didn't you just go to their office and get someone to help you? asked a logical friend.

        I tried. Several times in this sorry saga, I had asked StarHub why I couldn't just make an appointment to see someone and get everything sorted out. But no, they just do it over the phone, they said.

        So it's back to 1633 customer service hotline when I can muster the fortitude and stamina. Now where's that Red Bull

        Irene Hoe is a contributor just south of the digital divide!
        Last edited by saresha; 06-01-2005, 02:15 PM.


        • #5
          From the reviews I read, the phone part of it isn't very good but apparently it works really well for email. In the aftermath of 9/11, apparently phone lines were down all over NY but Blackberry users still managed to get in touch with loved ones with email on their handset.



          • #6
            Apparently Blackberry has a huge following in the US and is slowly catching up in parts of Europe. Most of the users whom I spoke to and who like it lots are corporate users. This group probably has the support of techies to solve any issues.


            • #7
              You're right, Dimples. Most users i know also are corporate users. My CEO is one of them and he seems to be having such fun sending out tons of email instructions while on holiday :shout:

              I'm one of those on the receiving end of his deluge of emails sent via his Blackberry


              • #8
                send some silly shopping lists to him using anonymous emails, irks him.....


                • #9

                  BlackBerry eliminates the hassles of dial-up by moving mobile email to a "push" architecture. In the traditional "pull" model, the user periodically connects to the email server to check for new messages.

                  BlackBerry's "push" technology enables messages to be automatically and effortlessly routed to your handheld while you're on the go.

                  BlackBerry handhelds include industry leading wireless technology and superior battery life allowing them to remain on and continuously connected to the wireless network. With BlackBerry's push technology, you can be discreetly notified as you receive a message. When email arrives in your inbox, a copy is immediately "pushed" to your 'Always On, Always Connected?' handheld.

                  With BlackBerry, you don't need to retrieve your email. Your email finds you. No dialing-in. No initiating connections. No phone or modem to attach. No effort required!

                  I think this might be the hard thing to set up when you're not a corporate user. I would probably get it if I used email a lot, but these days friends are more likely to SMS, and I don't email that much for work. Still happy with my O2 XDA II (though sadly now somewhat outdated with the new models just out).


                  • #10
                    any intention to get the Mini O2? :eh:


                    • #11
                      Haha coming from someone who used to work in a certain telco - BB dept, pls do not get it.

                      The device is often faulty, sometimes within less than one week of purchase. And do you really want to be harassed by emails/phonecalls when you're out of the office, taking a breather or lunch? Hahah~

                      Dont say you hear it from me.


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by stillvoice
                        And do you really want to be harassed by emails/phonecalls when you're out of the office, taking a breather or lunch? Hahah~
                        Why can't it be personal phone calls/emails? Then taking them outside the office is good too what. I mean, if you don't want to be bothered, then leave the device at your desk. Sorry, I don't get it eh.

                        On the other hand, this is for the mods, please don't remove the quote. I know quotes are not recommended if I'm replying the above. But if I'm replying to a specific sentence, then why can't I just quote that sentence so that the original poster will know right away which sentence I'm replying to. Makes sense? Plus, the quote space that's taken up is even smaller than some signatures here (no names and no offence meant). It works like this in newsgroups. Yah, I know this is not newsgroups. Anyway, I'm grumbling.


                        • #13

                          The O2 XDA mini is adorable! Last Dec, it was sold out everywhere in Hong Kong.

                          But I'm so used to its big brother that I think the screen will be too small for me. Esp since I do a lot of Wifi web surfing.

                          If I had the $$$, I would upgrade to the XDA IIs, with its slide-out keyboard.

                          I might need a laptop soon, though, so I better save for my dream Fujitsu instead.
                          Last edited by saresha; 13-01-2005, 09:51 PM.


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by kare2711
                            Why can't it be personal phone calls/emails? Then taking them outside the office is good too what. I mean, if you don't want to be bothered, then leave the device at your desk. Sorry, I don't get it eh.
                            I think the problem with the BB is that if it's given to you by the company, there's an unspoken expectation that it will be superglued to you and that you have no excuse not to respond promptly to your emails.

                            My IT dept offered me one and I declined... I won't carry one unless my boss specifically tells me I have to



                            • #15
                              Re: OT

                              Originally posted by saresha
                              The O2 XDA mini is adorable! Last Dec, it was sold out everywhere in Hong Kong.
                              It's also quite sold out here. I was at the mall near my place and all the phone stores don't have it too - said they're sold out.