If you have been following this blog for a while you realise that I do follow the mobile phone technology quite closely. The proud owner of one of the best camera phone N82, and the first Symbian S60 touch screen phone, the 5800. (I do use both of them with separate phone lines)
However, ever since Mellissa started to use a Blackberry, I’ve been thinking of getting one for myself too. Blackberries are pretty unique and offer two biggest distinctions from other phones:
- real push mail services – unlike most other “pull” services that drains the battery faster
- blackberry messaging services – with blackberry services and unlimited data plan, you can message your friend essentially for free. It works somewhat like between SMS and Instant Messaging
There are only two service providers in this country currently offering Blackberry plans for general consumers and not only for business customers alone.
Of these two, Celcom seems to have the better deal out there. The package for Blackberry Storm are:
- RM 1699 with Celcom Exec 50 – RM 148 monthly commitment
- RM 1399 with Celcom Exec 250 – RM 250 monthly commitment
Both packages comes with unlimited internet and Blackberry email usage for a contract period of 12 months. More information here.
Telco M, on the other hand, has the same phone priced at RM 2199 with their Value 150 plan with a 24 months commitment. While they are some differences in call rates and minor details, it seems that in this case, Celcom is providing a better deal when you put two of them together.
About the phone:
As for the phone, well, Blackberry Storm is the first phone from the company that comes with a touch screen rather than a QWERTY keyboard. There is always a debate on whether the lack of physical keys is a good thing on mobile phones in general, and even more so with a messaging centric device like Blackberry. At the end of the day, it boils down to personal preference.
The reviews are somewhat mixed, my friend Terence who has been using the Storm for a while really loved it. I’ve played with it for a few minutes and found that the touch screen tactile feedback is pretty different and needs a bit of getting used to. The display itself though, is gorgeous. 3.25″ with 360×480 pixel makes viewing webpages and email a breeze.
Comparing it to the iPhone (which is the most common comparison out there), the Blackberry does offer quite a few functionalities not found in the competitor. The messaging functions alone, with the two mentioned features above and full sms/mms functions, is clearly superior. The ability to carry and change battery too is always welcomed.
With the unlimited data plan (the only way to go with a device like this anyway), you can also use the phone as a tethered modem to a netbook or laptop like how I used to do with the Nokia. Very useful especially when streamyx isn’t the most reliable thing lately.
I’m seriously thinking of making the switch, what do you think?