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In My Opinion
How Much Technology Does One Man Need?
Wednesday, March 6, 2013 • Posted March 6, 2013

My office is, depending upon your view, either a dream and/or a nightmare of technology.

I have a desktop PC runnings Windows XP. Behind me, on a side table, I have a laptop PC that runs Windows 8. On the far right of my desk, there is a Blackberry Playbook tablet. Just above my keyboard is a Kindle Fire tablet reader. Somewhere in that vicinity, you'll also find a Microsoft Surface running Windows 8 RT, the new tablet from the guys up in Seattle. My Blackberry Torch 9800 smartphone can be found either on my desk or in my phone holster. There are also three digital cameras, any number of USB flash drives, and assorted cables, connectors and convertors scattered about the office.

My nerd flag flies high, and I don't mind folks thinking I'm a bit of a techno-geek. I did have an Apple iPod; but, decided it didn't fit in with my technology plan, so I gave it away as a gift.

Recently, I've been put into a bit of a technological tailspin as I anxiously await my next upgrade. The company formerly known as Research in Motion, and now rebranded simply as Blackberry, are in a fight for their business life. As they attempt to maintain relevancy in a world of iPhones, Android devices and an end run from Windows phones, they have placed all their bets on a new operating system, and a full redesigned phone that takes advantage of that software.

Blackberry made their worldwide announcement of their new BB10 system, and of their first two new phones, on January 30th. And then, the silence was overwhelming.

The new Z10 phone, the unit I'm drooling over, went on sale in Asia, Arabia, Europe and Canada (home of Blackberry). Analysts have variously predicted a complete turnaround for the company, or sounded its death knells. Verizon, T-Mobile and AT&T have all announced that they ARE going to carry the phones, while Sprint has released news that it's going to pass on at least the Z10 and wait for the second model offered from the Canadian manufacturer.

Except, none of the other big carriers are actually offering the phones yet. Their websites offer a chance to sign up for updates; but, they don't even have a method to preorder the new handsets. All of them explain that they are still testing and training their own support staff; but, a flotilla of Android, Windows and Apple devices continue to be approved by those same carriers, so I suspect it's a rather concerted lack of enthusiasm and support on the part of the carriers that is holding back the process.

By now, you're scratching your head and wondering why I'm so fixated upon the progress of Blackberry's new phone. I have discovered that having an efficient and useful smartphone helps me do my job better. I've also found that the Blackberry, unlike many of the other phones, is truly good at doing what a smart phone should do: crisp, clear voice calls; good connections in almost all locations; efficient email service; integrated GPS services; durability; and ease of use.

Many of the other phones out there play lots of games, look really cool, and take great photos; but, I have specific needs for my device; and, those other offerings just don't make the grade.

If you poll your friends, you'll find advocates for every operating system, and for devices that run them. It's a long stretch from the day when there was one phone model offered, in one color, and with no difference in features from one installation to another.. Back then, we couldn't fathom the need for a phone that traveled with us at all times; or, for a device that could perform as many vital functions as some of the early PCs, and do them even more efficiently.

I'm a nerd on a quest for the Blackberry Z10, and I won't be content until I can finally hold it in my hands and prove to myself that Blackberry will continue as a leader in the industry. Maybe it will finally be the "final" device I need to be content.

It’s all just my opinion.

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