America - the land of opportunity - the land of freedom - the shining star in the economic universe!! OK, so maybe our economy is in the toilet and maybe we aren't really as "free" as we think we are. And, Ok, maybe the rest of the world isn't thrilled with us right now - but it is great to be an American because we are certainly the land of technology and cool gadgets - right?
So, seeing that the BlackBerry Bold is the newest and coolest BlackBerry around, I wanted one so I set out to get one. "What?" "Only AT&T will be the American Provider?" "What is this, the iPhone take 2?" Well, no matter - off to the AT&T store I go. "Jerry" my local AT&T guy (the names have been changed to protect the ignorant) tells me: "Nope, not even sure what the BlackBerry Bold is. This is the newest and coolest one." He says, taking me to look at an 8820. "No, Jerry - this is not the coolest - I'm telling you this thing is all over the world, why isn't it here?" "You must be mistaken" says Jerry and he calls his supervisor.
Out comes "Jim" and tells me that the Bold was due here in June, but product delays have kept it from coming out until September. "It is almost the end of September" I protest, and it is all over the world - why not here - in the land of freedom and opportunity? Jim first says that I am mistaken and that AT&T will get it before anyone else. I point him to one of my frequently visited BlackBerry related web sites and show him this list of countries in which the Bold has already been released.
North America Canada, Mexico South America Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, Venezuela Europe Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, Romania, Portugal, Serbia, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom (England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales) Asia Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore Australia Australia Caribbean Dominican Republic, Jamaica
The grand total is now up to 31 countries!
Jim has nothing to say - he checks his product information and tells me to try back in a few weeks. Frustrated beyond belief, I call my good friend in Canada who knows everything BlackBerry (his name rhymes with Plevin) and I beg him to procure me a Bold from the true land of opportunity - Canada. "No Problem" he says and he goes off on his mission to get me a beautiful, new BlackBerry Bold.
"Good news" he later tells me - "I got you a Bold and you should get it in two days." Forget that I had to pay the equivalent of a mortgage payment - in the scheme of things that doesn't matter - this is a Bold we are talking about! I track the order on line and wait like a small child for the FedEx truck to pull up at noon the next day.....but.....something is wrong.....very wrong.
The phone rings; "Hello" I say, since that is usually how I answer the phone. "Yes, this is United States Customs Calling" - "Oh S*#$*" I think to myself - what is going on here. The not so nice lady on the other end tells me that they are "holding" a BlackBerry Bold and that I need to get FCC clearance to bring it into this country. "You have got to be kidding me" I said. She wasn't kidding. She explained that she was sending me about two dozen pieces of paper attached to an email that I needed to fill out, sign and then fax back and then, and only then, would they release the Bold to me.
Well, now I was convinced that I was going to jail for smuggling an illegal Bold into the country. The phone rings again, this time it is the border office of FedEx making sure that I had been in touch with US Customs - now it was a conspiracy - I was definitely going to jail - I was convinced.
I opened the paper work and didn't understand half of it. I called the customs office back and spoke to the woman who sent me the forms. She advised me as to which was the preferable answer to the boxes that needed to be checked. "OK" I said, as I checked the boxes she said, filled out the forms and then prepared to scan and email them back. I figured this was all part of the plan - it would make the Bold somehow "sweeter" to have to go through this hassle.
Forms filled out, scanned and I just needed to send them to my computer since I don't have a fax. "Crap" I exclaimed - the wireless network wasn't working right - the scanner didn't "see" my computer. An hour and a half later and sill no luck - was I ever going to get this Bold? I work out the problems, send the forms and wait - wondering if flashing lights were going to be pulling in my driveway and taking me to a Canadian Prison somewhere.
Day 3 - the Bold arrives, safe and sound. It is beautiful, magical - the screen is everything I had heard it was. I turn it on, punch in my "Unlock code" and I am off to the races. In goes my T-Mobile SIM card and I am syncing and installing and....wait...no 3G? No personal Email setup icon? The browser only works in Hot Spots? I can't transfer "My Faves?"
Lots of emails to my buddy (the guy whose name rhymes with Plevin) and these issues can't be resolved. I change the APN information, I upgrade to a new OS, I remove the vendor.xml file - all the stuff that we all know how to do here - but to no avail, my Bold just doesn't work right.
Don't get me wrong - this is a beautiful device, I'm sure it words great in Malaysia and Turkey - just not here in the good ‘Ol USA!
America - the Land of the Free and the home of The BOLD - the Brave - not the Bold - at least not yet.
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