Another one Bites the BB Dust – My first week with the Blackberry

Keeping with the theme of Mobile Phones, I have a small guilty announcement to make, I have just jumped over to the Blackberry Camp. For all those of you who are shocked, I am not giving up my Android, not for anything in the world. But like I mentioned in my previous post about Google Killing the Android in Dubai, and the fact that Blackberry has an Unlimited Data Plan unlike any of the other phones in the UAE, makes it a more compelling option. With a bit of a push from the company, the Blackberry was in my hands within no time.

After using the Android for as long as I have, the User Interface of the blackberry and the QWERTY keyboard with its small keys felt kinds difficult to get used to. But the BlackBerry messenger is something that will make up for most of that ! I love the fact that there is instant communication between people including pictures, voice notes and even plan group events. Its good, I understand people’s obsession with the Messenger, but dont yet understand why people use their BBM when they are in between other people. Now that is another post regarding cellphone etiquette. So will not get into that bit too much.

With regards to the Internet connectivity and the browser, well It could be much better, the Android browser feels like superman and the blackberry one like an ordinary human. I did get the better Blackberry, the Bold, and still it will be blown off the water by most Android phones, except for the fact that there is a data package built in the Black berry here in the UAE. The App world is well, “Not available in my country” so cant talk too much about the apps, need to wait until I get to India to access the Blackberry app store.

The track pad for me is the best innovation of BlackBerry, from the track ball earlier that was even adopted in my Nexus One to the now touch sensitive Track Pad the navigation within the phone is made simple, intuitive and really fun to use. Knowing the fact that the Blackberry and its encryption actually started a sort of a feud between UAE and Cannada is another interesting fact that I think adds to its appeal. Add in the BB Messenger, the 5 meg camera, 3G, WiFi, the in built Data Package here, and you get a compelling buy. I guess the fact that everyone is on Facebook and people sharing stuff can be seen by all, is pushing people to get to more closed groups of communication like the BBM and in effect ading to more people using the Blackberry.

I guess this is the closest in UAE you could get the feeling of what the Mobile Users in the west must be experiencing through their always connected phones. I guess the expression “Life was so much simpler when Blackberry and Apple were just fruits” is really true. I won’t say its the best decision I have made but well, its not bad for now.

Google killing Android in Dubai

Personally, I have been writing about how good the Android phones are and what benefits they bring to us consumers, maybe even save the world once. But after so much praise, its the market and Google in general who is quite literally squeezing the Android out of the middle east. Google are you listening ?? I know that the Middle east is a small market for you, and UAE is even small in the picture. But what companies like Google do not recognize is the fact that with an 85% expatriate population, the UAE has a much wider influence than they think it does.

Why am I complaining so much ? I love the Android Operating system, I love the User Interface of the Android, I love it that someone is sticking it to the iPhone and doing it well. What I don’t like is the non availability of the Android Market application which in my opinion is one of the best Application in the Phone. What do you mean non availability you ask ? The U.A.E apparently is considerably insignificant for Google, so they do not include the Android Market, all Android Phones bought in Dubai do not have this application and need to resort to other third part app stores which are well, not really all that good like Slide Me. Now why would Google do something like that ?? No idea.

I understand that the payment gateways for the Android Market is not available in all markets, but like they provide in the stock Android OS, they can provide access to the non paid free applications to the customers. Initially I thought that this was an issue with the Phones, but to be honest this is something that is consistent with any Android phone you buy in Dubai, including the Galaxy S from Samsung. Luckily I got the Nexus One, which provides access into the non paid applications of the Android market, else I cant imagine how frustrated I would have been with an expensive phone without its biggest feature.

Google Android Logo

The worst is not the fact that its not available here, the worst part is that people do not know about this at all !! The customers tho are wowed by the appeal of getting an Android are being sold phones without telling that they do not have access to the Application Market from Google. Personally I think that the lack of information to customers will cost the Android system a lot outside the US.

Adding to this frustration by the clients is the fact that the local Mobile Phone Operators Du and Etisalat do not have a deal running on any of the android phones with regards to Data Packages. The iPhone has one and so does the vastly popular Blackberry. So why is no one thinking about this, even Samsung ?? I am sure Samsung understands the prominence of this market, especially with their experience with LED and LCD TV’s in the middle east.

Google is not really killing the Android in Dubai literally, but like they say Actions speak louder than words ! Google if you are listening, its time to do something about this !!

Wordless Thursday – World Internet Links

Since we guys in Dubai just got out of the fix of a broken Internet connection, here is a look at the internet links around the world. Click to see the full version.

Continue reading Wordless Thursday – World Internet Links