We're half way through January which means 2009 is well underway. But before we get too much further into the new year it's time to hand out out some Best of 2008 Cracky Awards in a variety of BlackBerry & CrackBerry-related categories.
Readers' Choice Awards voting came to a close in the forums this past Sunday, so after the jump you can check out the final results and see who gets bragging rights for the next 11.5 months as crowned by the CrackBerry.com community.
And the winners of the Best of 2008 Crackies go to....
BEST OF 2008 READERS' CHOICE CRACKY AWARDS
To see full results - all nominees and votes cast, visit the Best of 2008 Cracky Awards Forum.
1. Smartphone of the Year - BlackBerry Storm 9530/9500
This was really a two device race between the BlackBerry Bold and BlackBerry Storm, and the first few days of voting saw each device taking turns in leading the vote count. But in the end the Storm chasers would not be denied and the BlackBerry Storm 9530/9520 edged out the Bold, winning by a margin of nearly 25%!
Whether you're a Storm lover, Storm hater or somewhere in between, you can't argue with what RIM's first touchscreen smartphone has done for the BlackBerry world and this site! The lead up to the Storm's launch made for awesome rumormill and leaked info fun (remember when we dropped the first live pics of the Thunder/Storm to the world?!) and inspired the craziest smartphone community event ever held in the form of the What Would You do for a BlackBerry Storm? contest!
And with the release of the BlackBerry Storm, our CrackBerry Storm Forums became the central hub for Storm owners worldwide. The influx of new BlackBerry owners and traffic had our servers stressed to the max (all good now as we've added lots more power to cope) as Storm owners have traded tips, hunted down the latest OS's, raved, ranted, searched out apps and more.
Congrats on your Best of 2008 Cracky Mr. BlackBerry Storm! Will it be the Storm 2 that takes the honor for 2009?! I guess we'll find out in 365ish days!!
2. Favorite Celebrity BlackBerry User - Barack Obama
This one was a landslide. It doesn't matter who you voted for in the Presidential election, from a company standpoint (Research in Motion) you really can't do better than to have the soon-to-be President of the United States of America endorse your product to the point where he's willing to break the law to use it. Obama is a CrackBerry Addict!!
Barack captured 46% of the votes, followed up by Sarah Palin with 11.5%. With "political celebrities" out of the picture, it was Kim Kardashian and Lindsay Lohan who rounded out 3rd and 4th place respectively. You can click the link to the title of this Cracky for full results.
Congrats on the Cracky Mr. President! Now go make CrackBerry Nation proud!!
3. Best Productivity App - CrackBerry Viigo
When it comes to placing BlackBerry software apps into distinct categories, 2008 proved to be a year where the lines have begun to blur and I think this is a trend that we'll see continue into 2009 and beyond.... when traditional Productivity apps start to pull in both Entertainment and Social Networking and Shopping (lets call of these Lifestyle) components you just know things are never going to be cut and dry ever again.
That said, in the area of Productivity Applications it was Viigo (and in this specific case CrackBerry Viigo!) which edged out Google Maps and Documents To Go as the Best Productivity App of 2008. PageOnce, Poynt, Telenav, World Mate and Vlingo all garnered their fair share of votes as well and a number of excellent apps were also suggested on the accompanying forum thread (check it out if you're looking for ideas of apps to install on your device).
Viigo got my vote in this category as well. Of all the third party apps installed on my device, this once gets used the most. What's impressive is that Viigo won the love of the CrackBerry community in a year where Viigo spent the majority of its time in "beta" form. There's still a host of performance and feature improvements coming to the app (download podcasts, built-in Twitter client, shopping channel, etc.) so it could very well be a contender for this same award when voting rolls around next year.
Congrats on the Cracky Viigo! And if you still don't know what this app is all about be sure to visit CrackBerryViigo.com for more information and to download it for free!
4. Best Game for BlackBerry - BrickBreaker
When I saw the results for this category, I wasn't sure whether to laugh or cry. After all these years, the winner of the Cracky for the Best BlackBerry Game of 2008 is none other than BrickBreaker!!
Capturing 37.5% of the popular vote, this oldy but a goody edged out Nintaii (25%) and WordMole (18%) for top spot. Don't get me wrong... I love BrickBreaker, but let's hope for 2009 a non-native game will emerge that will more completely capture the hearts of CrackBerry Nation.
To be fair, I'm sure BrickBreaker is by far the most played game on BlackBerry smartphones. And the touch version of BrickBreaker found on the Storm is definitely wayyy fun. I wonder if RIM has any means to track the # of hours that have been spent by CrackBerry Addicts playing BrickBreaker. I bet the total # would be astronomical!!
Congrats on the Cracky BrickBreaker. Be sure to check out the other nominees and runners' ups here.
5. Best Social Networking/Communication App - BlackBerry Messenger
Another native app wins the Cracky!! With 40% of the vote, BlackBerry Messenger beat out the Facebook app, MySpace app, BeeJive and TwitterBerry to win the 2008 Cracky for Best Social Networking and/or Communication app.
Like BrickBreaker, BlackBerry Messenger definitely helps put the Crack into CrackBerry. Once you begin using BlackBerry Messenger as a form of communication and get all of your peeps using it too, it basically becomes impossible to leave the BlackBerry platform. Heck, even if you wanted to try out the competition for a bit, you'd probably end up buying a second phone on another plan just so you could keep using BBM on your BlackBerry.
Congrats on the Cracky BBM... you've got us all hooked for life!
6. Best Media App / Player - FlyCast
In the category of Best Media App / Player, in 2008 FlyCast was the clear winner as voted by members of CrackBerry.com, capturing 44% of the vote. BerryTunes, FlipSide and Nobex followed up behind, and the BlackBerry native media app even got several shout outs in the comments as being good as is!
With apps like MyDJ and Slacker and Slingbox Mobile Player emerging toward the latter part of 2008 and now launching in 2009, this year's race will be even tighter.
Congrats on the Cracky FlyCast! Be sure to watch the video above for a great overview of the app by one of FlyCast's co-founders and visit FlyCast.fm for more info.
7. Best Utility App - CrackMem/CrackUtil | PeeKaWho
In the category of Best Utilty App of 2008, we're awarding two Readers' Choice winners. Why? Because we had to include Pete6's awesome CrackMem and CrackUtil apps into the running, but these aren't actually apps you run off your BlackBerry but rather install on your computer to help make your BlackBerry that much better. With CrackMem/CrackUtil being the winner in this category with 24.5% of the vote, the top on-device utility app came in with 18.73% of the vote, and that's no other than PeeKaWho! Big congrats to both winners here. Of all the categories in the Best of 2008 voting, this one turned out to be the most closely contested among a variety of nominees right down to the wire.
CrackMem & CrackUtil
A big congrats goes out to Pete6 who developed both CrackMem and CrackUtil, which are both provided free of charge. CrackMem allows you to easily get rid of the preloaded, unwanted crap on your device, freeing up precious memory while CrackUtil acts a Swiss Army Knife to your BlackBerry. Think of it as JL_Cmdr but with more power and a friendlier user interface.
A short write up won't do these utilities justice, so follow the links below to learn more and download:
Congrats on the Cracky Pete6!! Thanks for helping out CrackBerry Nation not just with these awesome apps, but for being a CrackBerry Forums moderator as well!
When it comes to the Best of 2008 On-Device Utility App, the big winner here is PeeKaWho! From the moment I first dropped word of this email popup alert utility in the blogs it was an instant hit with the BlackBerry Community, quickly shooting up the ShopCrackBerry top sellers list. Since its initial release, PeeKaWho has seen a ton of improvements and updated releases (free updates for life once you purchase) that have made this app a must-have for any hardcore BlackBerry user. It really is one of those apps that RIM should just payout/acquire and build directly into the BlackBerry OS as an option users can turn on or off. Not having to back out of an app/task to check who emailed or SMSed you is a great time saving feature.
Congrats on the Cracky PeeKaWho. CrackBerry Nation Loves You!
8. Best Bluetooth Accessory - New Jawbone
With a max of 10 nominees in the forum voting, we figured it would be impossible to have an objective poll on best BlackBerry Case (there's just too many styles and devices to choose between!). Bluetooth, however, proved to be a bit easier.
When the voting came to a close for Best Bluetooth Accessory of 2008, there was one clear winner and everybody else was nearly tied even for second place. Following up on the successful release of the original Jawbone, Aliph's New Jawbone clearly made an impression on CrackBerry Nation, capturing over 34% of the vote.
Congrats on the Cracky Jawbone! We can't wait to see what you release next!
BEST OF 2008 CRACKBERRY FORUM MEMBER AWARDS
The idea for the Best of 2008 Cracky Awards came when member KStout posted this thread
in the forums, encouraging members to nominate other members in four different categories: Most Helpful Member, Favorite Forums Moderator, Craziest Member and Mr. / Ms. Intelligent.
The thread got a ton of attention and in the end KStout gave me the distilled list of the top ten nominees in each category, which were then turned into a poll for voting.
BIG CONGRATS go out to everyone who was nominated and made the top ten finalists. All of you ROCK! The CrackBerry community is a big and active forum and it's simply amazing to see the commitment our members have for both BlackBerry, and more importantly, to the people who use them!
And the winners are....
MOST HELPFUL MEMBER OF 2008
FAVORITE FORUMS MODERATOR OF 2008
CRAZIEST MEMBER OF 2008
MR. INTELLIGENT FOR 2008
Congrats to all the winners!! Be sure to click the links above each picture to see the nominees and voting results in each category.
AND... as an additional bonus to the honor of receiving a Cracky, each winner can have their pick of $50 in free software or accessories from ShopCrackBerry.com ($100 for Crucial_Xtreme since he won twice!).
UNTIL NEXT YEAR...
What a ton of fun! Next year we'll do this event up bigger and better and start it off a bit earlier (let the voting begin in mid-December).
Think you have what it takes to win a 2009 Cracky? SHOW US!! You've got 11 months to gett'r done!