Photo: Business Insider
Last month, I was mocked for my crappy phone.I had a two-year-old BlackBerry Curve that had to be reset every other hour.
I couldn’t take pictures, scan the Facebook app or find my coordinates on Google Maps without it crashing.
I wasn’t in denial. I knew the phone was on its last legs, and was sorely lacking in the software department.
I was ready to make the leap from BlackBerry to the iPhone, as soon as Apple took the wraps off its latest sex in a box creation, presumably, the iPhone 5.
Then a funny thing happened. Apple released the iPhone 4S.
The iPhone 4S?!?! I didn’t want some warmed over retread. I’d been waiting two years to make the switch, and this was the best Apple could do?
I was annoyed, and I wrote about it here.
When I wrote about it Research In Motion’s PR people reached out. They sent me a new BlackBerry with a touch screen, and the latest operating system. It didn’t crash every other second.
Suddenly, I was torn. Was I really ready to abandon the BlackBerry?
I decided to hold an experiment. I would play with both phones for two weeks and see which one I liked best.
I received the Blackberry for free from RIM.
By the time the iPhone 4S was released two weeks later I didn't want it. I loved my new Blackberry. It had a touchscreen and a keypad. It was my new best friend.
Getting the iPhone 4S, on the other hand, was a huge pain in the butt. I woke up 5:30 AM to go stand in line for four hours just to get it.
When I finally got the phone I found out that I couldn't use my 'new in two' Verizon deal there. I was forced to buy the phone for $216 when I could have had it for much cheaper -- maybe even for free -- if I had bought it at a Verizon store.
Bottom line: I paid $200+ for a phone I didn't even want.
Thus my trial began, BlackBerry: 1, iPhone: 0
It's not easy to tell when I have new emails on the iPhone. It's also not easy to see which mailbox has a new message. I have five email accounts that I check regularly, so I don't like having them all lumped under one icon.
Email is the only reason I got a smartphone (I was a flip phone user until two years ago). It's such an important phone feature, I'm giving the BlackBerry TWO points for winning this category.
BlackBerry: 3, iPhone: 0
I've come to miss the red blinking light that notified me when I had a new message on my Blackberry. It made me a much more efficient emailer too.
You can set a really obnoxious white flashing light on your iPhone, but only for text messages and alarms. If there's a way to set it for emails, I haven't figured it out yet.
Even if I could figure it out, I don't think I'd want it.
BlackBerry: 4, iPhone: 0
Since switching to an iPhone, I desperately miss having a keypad.
Auto correct only works half of the time, and I hate having to press that little X if you don't want to use a word. It's also hard to go back to an exact spot in a message if there's a typo without a keypad. I sometimes end up rewriting entire sentences because I can't get back to the precise word that's misspelled*.
Typing is clearly a crucial smart phone feature, so BlackBerry gets two points for nailing this.
BlackBerry: 6, iPhone: 0
*Note: While Jay Yarow was editing this story, he told me about the magnifying glass feature that helps you get to the right portion of a sentence. That might mitigate this point, but I'm still docking Apple a point because I don't think I would have figured this out with his help. Apple is supposed to be user friendly!
I like that the iPhone comes with weather and Google Maps installed. I had to download them both on my BlackBerry.
There are more, and better, apps on the iPhone. Plus, the big touchscreen makes for a much better app experience in most cases.
It's important for a phone to be entertaining, so I'll award two points to the iPhone for doing a good job.
BlackBerry: 6, iPhone: 2
I've been hearing about this game for years and haven't been able to play it until now.
I was sceptical but have grown addicted to pelting green pigs with birds. Gimme dem eggs!
BlackBerry: 6, iPhone: 3
When I got the new BlackBerry, it took time to learn how to navigate it. I soon realised there's a menu bar you have to highlight before you can scroll left to right to find different apps.
On the iPhone, all of the apps I need are laid out in front of me. If they start to get too cluttered, I can easily move them into specific folders. Apps can also be easily deleted.
Blackberry: 6, iPhone: 4
I never attempted to listen to music on my BlackBerry. Figuring that out would have taken too much time. The iPhone makes uploading and listening to music brainless.
Attach your phone to your computer, open iTunes, and voila. You're good to go.
Blackberry: 6, iPhone: 5
I'm a fan of the iPhone 4S search feature. If you scroll to the left on the home screen, you can search for anything on your phone.
It's a quick way to pull up contacts, although typing a name on the BlackBerry was easy too.
Half point to Apple on this one.
BlackBerry: 6, iPhone: 5.5
Siri is clearly the coolest iPhone 4S feature. But it often leaves me hanging or doesn't know what I'm asking.
I'm also nervous because Apple is keeping track of everything I ask it, and my friends have been having a field day with it. If Apple ever plans to personalise a phone for me in the future, let's hope it doesn't use too much Siri data.
The concept of Siri is decently cool, and I like that I can send people texts or find restaurants without typing. I'll give it a half point.
BlackBerry: 6, iPhone: 6
iMessage group chats and FaceTime are nice features to have.
BBM was cool, but no one has a BlackBerry anymore so it became useless.
BlackBerry: 6, iPhone: 7
I won't be returning the $200 device after all.
Despite being inadequate for typing and emailing, the iPhone's easy navigation and beautiful interface make it worth having.
I'll be shipping the BlackBerry back to RIM. Not that the BlackBerry isn't a good device -- Apple just comes with too many perks to give it up.