It's always great to see the community sharing their stories about BlackBerry. Be it their devices, something in their lives, accessories or apps - we love it all.
Some of you may know Jared from across any of our Mobile Nations site. He took a bit of a hiatus for some family time but dropped by the forums today to leave us a quick post. After some long sleepless nights, Jared made the decision to drop his iPhone in favor of a new BlackBerry Z10 and hasn't looked back since. It's been over two weeks now and he's loving every bit of his new toy (as he should).
Jared's sentiments really echo what many of the CrackBerry community has felt about their BlackBerry 10 devices as well. Check out his post below and be sure to swing by the forums for more discussion.
I have always had a sweet spot for BlackBerry - I have used nearly every device that has hit Verizon Wireless since the 8703e, but recently I started flirting with some other devices. Over the past year and a half I have spent a lot of time on other platforms, most recently using an iPhone 4S as my daily driver. When BlackBerry 10 was released I was intrigued, but not enough so at that time to make the dive into the OS. Over the course of the last few months there have been many times where I considered driving to a Verizon store and picking one up, but I held off. Two weeks ago I finally convinced myself to give it a real shot, and now I am left wondering what took me so long.
Two weeks ago I picked my wife up from the airport, and we were discussing phones, and she knew how much I wanted the BlackBerry Z10. We decided that Sunday to hop in the car and head to the Verizon store to pick one up and give it a shot. The worst that could happen was that it wasn't for me and I ended up returning it, right? Well luckily that is not the case and the Z10 has fully rejuvenated my love for BlackBerry again.
The Z10 has fully rejuvenated my love for BlackBerry again
When I first got the device I was like a kid in a candy store, playing around, seeing how everything operated and trying to get used to it. The first day with the device was a bit of a struggle as there was no more home button and the size was a bit different than I was used to, but these were small struggles. Quickly I became adapted to the larger size and the bezel gestures came back to me from my use of the BlackBerry PlayBook. I took a few hours to surf the forums, check out how other people had their devices set up, and finally came to a set up that fit my needs.
Once better understanding the device I jumped into BlackBerry World to get some apps, first picking up the CB10 app and Blaq, and then just poking around. I am someone who thinks they need to have a ton of applications on their device but never really uses them, so this time I decided to check out just what I actually needed. I quickly found replacements for the apps that I used regularly and was also extremely pleased with how far BlackBerry World has come.
Some of the applications that I found for replacement were Endomondo for activity tracking, SoundHound for music identification, BlackBerry Travel for monitoring my travels and others as well. Additionally I found the games that my child enjoyed most on my iPhone, like Jetpack Joyride, Angry Birds and other big titles. After getting set up with some apps, it was on to check out how the device would perform in daily life.
Searching for applications was much easier for me in BlackBerry World than I found it to be in Apples App Store, mainly because the results were more accurate. The categories were easier to navigate, the information was presented in a neater, easier to read fashion, and overall just an experience I preferred.
There is much more to my mobile phone then these media applications, and not having them available for a single click download has shown me just that
Sure, some of the large name apps that people think make or break a platform are not available officially but can be loaded in other ways. Personally I have yet to load any of them and I can honestly say I don't miss them at all. I haven't kept up with my Instagram feed every ten minutes, haven't checked out What's Hot on Vine and it doesn't bother me one bit. There is much more to my mobile phone then these media applications, and not having them available for a single click download has shown me just that.
After a few days of getting in a routine with the BlackBerry Z10 I quickly realized how much faster I was getting the basic tasks done and how much time I was saving. To be able to quickly peek in my Hub and see what was going on or to be able to fire off an email via the amazing virtual keyboard, it was all so easy. Viewing how many emails, text, BBM's or any other notifications I have saves me time and allows me to at a glance see what is going on at any given time.
The past two weeks have felt more productive than any two weeks on my iPhone -- seeing the upcoming calendar activities, firing off quick emails, staying more organized, being able to add notes to phone calls, and much more has left me feeling really great about BlackBerry 10. The speed of the OS, the ease of snapping pictures, the lack of physical buttons and voice commands all make this experience a very positive one. As expected, BlackBerry 10 is still a young operating system and has kinks that need to be worked out as well as features that can be improved upon.
Throughout the last two weeks I have picked up my iPhone several times just to check it out and the amount of times I have tried to swipe up instead of hit the home button is insane. Now it seems so odd having to hit a button to navigate an OS, and instead it feels so much more natural to just swipe my way around.
The past two weeks have felt more productive than any two weeks on my iPhone
Unfortunately my Z10 has already needed to be replaced on two different occasions, but this has just given me even more insight on the new BlackBerry 10 experience. The first replacement was required because of some smudges in the LCD itself, under the top screen which were driving me crazy on white screens. The second device was missing some of the coating on the top of the display and it was causing some touch screen performance issues. I now have a fully functional unit that works and feels great.
Previously I would have been extremely annoyed having to swap my devices because it was such a pain. When switching devices you are almost always guaranteed to lose a BBM contact or have some type of issue or error hold you back from having a good experience. For me, it was exactly the opposite. Simply sign into my BlackBerry ID and my BBM list was back, download a few apps, set up a few folders and good to go. BlackBerry Link has come a long way as well, and it looks and feels great as well. A few minor setbacks and device exchanges weren't enough make me want to return my BlackBerry Z10, and instead each experience just showed me even more how much they have changed for the better.
For me, most of what I need is already baked into the OS, and having seen some of what BlackBerry 10.2 has in store I feel fully comfortable that buying the Z10, even at the $500 full retail pricing was the right choice for me. BlackBerry is hard at work behind the scenes creating an amazing user experience, and they have fully restored my faith and earned another full time user.
As with Jared's story, we always love to hear great stories from the CrackBerry community. We encourage everyone to share their stories with us in the forums - and you never know - they just may turn up on the blogs. After all, CrackBerry is all about the readers.
Also - if you're coming off another device like Jared did (or even if you aren't) be sure to check out CrackBerry's "Switch to BB10 in a 140 Characters" Contest where you can wins all kinds of fun prizes.
Head into the forums for more discussion on this post and be sure to leave some stories of your own!