Neon Tommy - Annenberg digital news

In Defense Of The Blackberry

Callie Schweitzer |
June 26, 2010 | 2:02 p.m. PDT

Editor-in-Chief

Creative Commons
Creative Commons
In the midst of all this iPhone 4 talk, it's hard not to wonder if you're the only person in the world who doesn't live an iLife with Steve Jobs. I've always been a devout Blackberry supporter, and here's why: 

1. BBM--also known as Blackberry Messenger--a form of instant messaging that outdoes any text bubble conversation on the iPhone. Why? Because of a feature called "Real-Time Confirmations." With a little "D" or an "R" next to your message, you can tell if it has been delivered--or better yet--read. (Say goodbye to all those, "I never got your text!" excuses. Now you have proof.) 

BBM is also rumored to be untraceable (and thus unsubpoenable) when certain features are turned on. Some say that's why so many government officials prefer Blackberries.   

2. The Mullet Effect--I've always thought of the Blackberry like a mullet--"Business in the front, party in the back." Stay with me here. When I see someone with a Blackberry, I automatically assume this person means business, has business or does business (not necessarily of any importance, just "business").

See someone typing away furiously on a Blackberry? They're probably sending a top-secret e-mail. See someone intently focused on an iPhone? They're probably playing with the Bubblewrap or Lightsaber Unleashed apps. Regardless of what a Blackberry user is really doing, the phone itself just seems so much more straight-laced and serious than the iPhone. 

3. Choice of Service Providers--One of the biggest complaints with the iPhone is being locked into service with AT&T. The company is the sole reason some people avoid the iPhone altogether. Twitter analysis from this past week shows that negative tweets about AT&T hit 44 percent on Apple's launch day, June 24. People may love the iPhone 4 but they have a complaint or two about service and reception: apparently, "covering the bottom-left edge of the phone with one’s palm can seriously hurt the phone's network performance."   

4. The Keyboard AKA Covert Operations Made Easy--Ever tried texting under the table or typing without looking? The Blackberry's QWERTY keyboard makes this a breeze for agile texters. Not so for iPhone users. Without a keyboard, iPhone users must look at the screen to find the right letters. Major downside for those looking to be covert in the classroom or in a meeting. 

5. Durable, Dependable, Blendable--Horror stories of iPhone users dropping their phones and shattering the screen do make Blackberry users thankful for the phone's thicker size and pretty dependable body. Ryan Salerno of Gizmodo wrote about his devastation after dropping his iPhone on a New York City street. The result isn't pretty. I'd also hedge a bet that a Blackberry would hold up better than the iPhone in a blender

To reach editor-in-chief Callie Schweitzer, click here.




Comments

Why people still use BlackBerrys | Afrinish (not verified) on August 5, 2010 9:03 PM

[...] image can work in BlackBerry’s favor, writes Callie Schweitzer on a blog called Neon Tommy. She says the phone has a “mullet effect” in that it’s “business in the [...]

Your rating: None
terri (not verified) on August 5, 2010 7:11 AM

Really cool iPhone app just out..."Mullet your Friend." Maybe all of us iPhone users should do this for our Blackberry friends! Then, maybe the developers could change the app name to "Mullet your Blackberry Friends!" http://www.mulletyourfriend.com

Your rating: None
Why people still use BlackBerrys? « JMWIV Blog (not verified) on August 5, 2010 4:55 AM

[...] image can work in BlackBerry’s favor, writes Callie Schweitzer on a blog called Neon Tommy. She says the phone has a “mullet effect” in that it’s “business in the [...]

Your rating: None
wednesdaywolf (not verified) on June 30, 2010 4:58 PM

The mullet effect is precisely why I opted for a Blackberry! I at least want people *thinking* I'm doing work.

Your rating: None Average: 5 (1 vote)
pecrawley on June 29, 2010 4:02 PM

The Mullet Effect. Nice.

Your rating: None Average: 5 (1 vote)

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