Last year when Apple shipped their first gen iPhone, everyone naturally compared it to the Blackberry. I know I did.
It turns out that most blackberry folks I know fell into a few different groups
-some folks ditched their blackberry all together (small group)
-some returned their iphone (small group)
-some kept two phones. they used the blackberry for work and iphone for everything else, browser, wifi, camera, pictures, video etc. (larger group).
It will be interersting to see what happens this summer. Apple is going to ship a 3g version of the iPhone and v2.0 of their software which will support wireless exchange sync, push email and security.
That must be freaking out RIM. If the iPhone v2.0 works well with Exchange I know what I’m going to do and my Blackberry should be worried. From todays NYT article:
R.I.M. employees and outside developers who are writing programs for the new phone, which has the internal code name “Meteor,” say that it will have faster processors, a larger screen and a better browser that more closely resembles the Web experience on a computer.
Both Apple and RIM have a reliance on the carrier in different ways. Apple limited themselves to AT&T in the US market. Yet RIM’s model is much more carrier dependent. From the same Times piece:
Mr. Balsillie said. “It may be a better strategy to fight the carrier. We may be wrong. The carrier may get disintermediated, in which case we fade with them.”
Ultimately I think this battle isn’t going work out for RIM. Yes, they have the lead and a loyal following. Some of their fans do crazy things. And Apple is limited to one carrier in the USA market.
But the winner is will go to the best user experience, a tightly integrated combination of hardware and software, the best apps and developers. Who does that sound like?