BlackBerrious Maximus!

BlackBerrious Maximus (Or, how far can you push this thing?!)

It is no secret that I am attached to my BlackBerry - too attached. The fact that Kevin, Martin and I are writing a book about BlackBerry addiction should give notice that we are a little "over the top" with regards to BlackBerry usage.

Whether it is the BlackBerry or any other device I own, I like to try to maximize the potential of the device. I want to find out everything I can do with it and more. With my BlackBerry, I already check my 7 email accounts, read the New York Times in the morning, check in on the Red Sox for a play by play during every game, play games during my 10 minutes of down time, listen to music on my bike rides and have my kids watch movies on long trips. I read PowerPoints and Spreadsheets, send picture messages, text my kids and use IM to stay in touch. That just scratches the surface. So, I decided to put my new 4.5 OS to the test on my 8320 Curve and see just how much was too much.

I have a Bluetooth Car Stereo that I installed in my car - so I use the BlackBerry for phone calls. With the new OS, I find that Bluetooth works a bit better and that the BlackBerry quickly sees that I have streaming Stereo audio capabilities (A2DP) - so I select Bluetooth Audio on my Car Stereo and then fire up Flipside and my tunes are streaming to my Car stereo - pretty cool. While streaming audio, I get a phone call - the music stops - I take the call just talking into the air and then when the call ends, my music is back on - so far so good.

I pull off the road for an experiment. I turn on the Garmin GPS that is paired with my Curve and start the Garmin navigation software on the Curve. I pinpoint my location and then start to navigate home - all the while still listening to my music stream from my BlackBerry to the stereo. Pretty cool - I have connected with two Bluetooth devices simultaneously. In the meantime, I notice my little red light still flashes when email comes in - so now I have a nice alternating blue and red thing going on while I stream music and listen to the phone tell me where to go.

I'm still not satisfied - I know I can do more, but how much more? I pull off the road (never do all this while driving) and stop Flipside - I make sure to close the program completely to try to avoid a memory leak and an overload to my BlackBerry. I then open up my web browser - I have a strong EDGE connection - at least for the moment - and then I go to and pick my favorite Internet radio station. Can I, I wonder, be on the net and stream internet radio while connected to the GPS and still get email and use the Bluetooth to talk on the phone - why not give it a try?

Low and behold, Internet radio starts to stream beautifully through the car stereo. The Garmin is still doing its thing and the red light still flashes when email comes in. I find the radio goes in and out (more because I live on an island with poor cell service) but it is still working. Then the phone for the big test. I go to answer the call and all I hear through the stereo is a loud series of buzzes and noise. I look at my beloved Curve and see the dreaded hour glass - nothing helps, nothing to do but pull out the battery and start over. I have done it, I pushed my BlackBerry to the limit and it has said "uncle." So, for all those who want to use Bluetooth and talk on the phone while you navigate using GPS on your BlackBerry while listening to Internet might need to wait for the increased memory capacity of the new BOLD!