It's on. I announced the Mobile Nations World Tour 2012 earlier this week, which has me spending the next few months getting to better know the competition as we wait for BlackBerry 10. My first stop on the tour is Android and yesterday I said hello to the audience over at our sibling site Android Central, who *mainly* welcomed me with open arms (turns out there are a lot of ex-BB users and CB fans over there too). I also joined Phil, Jerry and Alex for a podcast in the evening, which you can check about above.
My primary SIM card is now tucked into an HTC One X. Transitioning from a BlackBerry to Android phone has been interesting so far. When a blinking red light, physical keyboard and BBM have been part of your existence for so long, not having them is weird. Despite the big change, I've been managing to get along OK with the One X and am getting pretty fast at typing on glass (I tried a few different keyboards and have found the SwiftKey 3 Beta keyboard to suit me). Even if I learn nothing else while on Tour, I'm glad for the practice I'm getting in prep for BB10.
There are a few things that drive me bonkers and a few demands I still need to find solutions for, but overall it has been fairly easy to pick up and use. The One X hardware is pretty nice. The display really is awesome and it has a solid camera. But at the same time I've also found that the One X has a piece of sh!t speakerphone and that the bluetooth works like crap with my car (Range Rover) and is always dropping the connection. These are things that have been rock solid on BlackBerry for years, so I find it surprising and sort of unacceptable. I guess it's an illustration of where the priorities are at, and I'd put delivering a great communication experience not at the top of the list.
I'm taking detailed notes of all my experiences and also building an evaluation framework so I can provide useful insight based on all of my likes and dislikes and observations. I'm thinking the plan will be to do a dedicated Mobile Nations World Tour podcast followed by a long write up with my experiences as I try each platform (I dont' want to pollute the CB blogs with too many non-BB posts!). Stay tuned for more. And in the meantime, you can keep up with me on twitter and Google+ for my remarks.
A new 5G BlackBerry Android smartphone with a keyboard will arrive in 2021
A new joint announcement from BlackBerry, OnwardMobility, and FIH Mobile lays out the plans for a new 5G BlackBerry Android smartphone with a physical keyboard to be brought to market in North America, and Europe within the first half of 2021.