I admit, I’ve been a fan of pretty much every smartphone as they’ve been released. I don’t know which phone is certifiably the “original” smartphone, as the definition is rather fluid, but the first I remember was waaay back in roughly 2002 when I heard about the email-savvy Blackberry. Pretty soon, photos of celebrities glued to their super phones started surfacing, and everyone was trying to get their hands on one of the addictive gadgets.
The capabilities of these mini-computers seems to have exponentially increased: Want to take a picture? Why don’t you snap a high-quality photo with your 5 megapixel camera and upload it directly to flickr? Want directions to the nearest shopping center? Okay, use this built-in GPS, and why don’t you plan for traffic while you’re at it. Download mp3s and select a different ringtone for each of your friends, or go on Pandora and just stream some radio while you’re working.
But with all the new functionality comes a price. The OS on smartphones can be buggy, or the browser is laggy. Many phones, especially those with tactile-sensitive screens, experience lag when loading images, or flipping the screen when turned on its side (omg Blackberry Storm, NO). Sometimes the GPS is… well, slow, and not so effective. Some phones, despite their amazing app-finding abilities, still couldn’t send pictures to other phones (*ahem*). But that still doesn’t take away from the fact that phones are much more than simple, mobile phones these days. They’re mini-computers that double as phones.
After getting my Blackberry Storm this spring, I was very excited. I had previously owned a LG flip phone, which was just OMGWTFBBQ awesome when it came out, being able to play mp3 files instead of those pre-programmed midi Mozart files, and it took pictures and video, and it did have internet capabilities, though it was a crude representation of the worldwide web, for sure . Like, omg, wow. When I traded it in, I got laughed at for having such an outdated phone, and I was just adamant about getting something flashy and cool, without severing my contract with Verizon. iPhone for Verizon? Yes, that must be the Blackberry Storm. Bought and fully paid for in less than fifteen minutes.
I can’t even describe some of the problems this phone had at first. It was like waiting for a dial-up modem to load a 30-second Youtube clip. People would call and the phone would just sit there and “think”. It would ring, but I couldn’t answer it because it was “thinking.” Screen lag would cause the phone to freeze and restart, which took about 7 minutes to complete. I am a texting maniac, and the touch-screen buttons were not only slow, but unwieldy. It had issues saving the video it took, one of the main reasons I wanted the phone — it surprised me that existing smartphones so few had video capabilities. I became frustrated and stopped taking video, only to find my camera was so laggy that I’d miss any action shot, and for still shots, I’d often find myself waiting so long that I would turn the phone to see if it was actually taking a picture, only to have a picture snapped while I was turning it. In short, it couldn’t keep up with me. I was super bummed.
A patch was released shortly after the launch of the Blackberry Storm, which was supposed to fix the issues the phone had in terms of lag and OS instability. It did help a bit, but the phone still has problems if I don’t restart it every day. It was, in my opinion, too rushed to compete with the iPhone, and guess what? I fell for it. Well, I won’t do that again.
Or will I?
Ever since I’ve seen that droiddoes commercial, I’ve been wanting one. I’ve visited the website and read up on it. If you’re interested in droid, visit the website and take a peek. So far I’ve heard that it will retail for $199 after a $100 mail-in rebate (and I am so not a fan of mail-in rebates), but that phone just seems….sexy. Yeah. I want one. Free, built-in Google Maps GPS, background-running apps, flash support (though I’m also not a fan of flash-based sites, but hey, maybe I can finally play Cafeworld on my phone… oops, I mean, uh, do important-like things! Yes!), shop for mp3s on Amazon, and you know, take pictures in the dark. Mmm.
Anyone want a free Blackberry Storm?