We were in our local Verizon “store” yesterday — and by “store” we mean “place where dreamy customers move like driftwood among bright, bold Microsoft displays of soon-to-be-obsolete-attempts-to-cram-Windows-software-into-something-Apple-did-better-five-years-ago-anyway, with vacant stares and nervous eye-ticks while they wait for what Verizon calls ‘service’ to help them even though it’s been so long since they typed their name into that stupid welcome screen for a place in line that they no longer remember what they came in for.”
We were getting our trusty, old, cell phone replaced for the simple reason that it got wet and died and wouldn’t recover even after drying it outside in the bright sun of this record-setting heat wave which the global-warming-deniers are conspicuously silent about even though every time it snows somewhere they blog about how it snowed somewhere and SO MUCH FOR GLOBAL WARMING ANYWAY AND AL GORE CAN GO YOU-KNOW-WHERE.
But mind-numbing as a trip to Verizon inevitably must be, it turned out to be an interesting experience because as we were waiting for our much-delayed but eventually quite helpful salesperson to transfer our contacts from the old phone to the new, we listened to something that must be happening in Verizon “stores” around the country, if RIM‘s recent earnings report, which disappointed Wall Street’s Finest even though Apple and Google have become the standards in smart-phones, is any indication.
It was the sound of RIM losing market share, and it came in the form of a customer inquiring of a Verizon salesperson about buying a Blackberry.
The conversation went something like this:
Customer: “I want to get a Blackberry. What’s the difference between the Bold and the Storm?”
Verizon Helpful Salesperson: “Well the Bold has more Megafractals and a higher Quark Factor, but the Storm is easier to use.” [Editor’s Note: the VHS did not actually say this—that’s just how it sounded to us.]
Customer, after much back-and-forth on the Bold versus the Storm: “What’s the Droid? Is that like a Blackberry?”
VHS: “The Droid has more apps, you can do a lot more with it. Great screen, really bright.”
Customer: “Can I get my email on a Droid?”
VHS: “Sure. Of course.”
Customer: “So what’s the difference between Blackberry and Droid?”
VHS: “Well you get all kinds of apps you can use on the Droid, a lot of apps—”
Customer: “Can I look at a Droid?”…
And, sure enough, by the time we walked out the door into the steamy, record-setting heat, there was one less Blackberry customer in the world.
This post originally appeared on the blog Jeff Matthews Is Not Making This Up and is republished here with permission.