What’s RIM’s latest release? Did you hesitate before you answered? Who answered the 8300? Who chose the 8800? Actually, both would be wrong as the Red Pearl just came out, but does that even count? My point is this: a new device was just released to the public and already we’re salivating over rumours and what-if’s.
I know I don’t do much here at BBCool to help this. I post leaks and rumours just as much as the other guys (if not more, because we like to be on top of things), and in the process I’m sure to step on a few toes of both my readership and the folks at RIM. Why? Because they just want the current model to speak for itself and for the rest of us to sit idly by until the next press release from Research In Motion.
But yes, not two weeks after the official release of the BlackBerry 8800, some leaker decided to raise some eyebrows with shots of 8300, sending everyone into a bit of a tizzy. The forums lit up with a lot of “Thank God for 30-day warranty”-type posts, and it started frustrating me. More than it should have, actually. It helped put some things into perspective, though, and where exactly our Society 2.0 is at.
The “keeping up with the jonses” epidemic that started slow in the days of yester-year has been nuked into a huge problem that I’d love to see go away but is showing no signs of waning. We all want the latest and greatest, and so many of us are living in the future, just waiting for that next big thing to come down the pipeline. In our world, we all sat and waited on the Pearl, then the 8800, now the 8300 – and I’m left wondering why we just can’t be happy with what we’ve got?
Readers, if you keep waiting on “the next great device”, you’ll never have a new cell or BlackBerry for longer than the initial warranty is for. There’s always going to be improvements being made, new designs, new colours – it’s all part of product evolution and marketing. If you have a Pearl, how about waiting until your contract is up and then upgrading? By then, just imagine where the BlackBerrys’ll be at (maybe they’ll partner with Ron Popeil at some point – here’s hoping).
Carriers aren’t really helping with this, either. Today (March 14) in Canada marks the first day that you can keep the same number while switching carriers. Now, this doesn’t really affect the majority of BB users in Canada as they’re already on Rogers and the other carriers are a little behind RIM’s release schedule, but just imagine if that weren’t the case (like the carriers down South). I can picture the madness at wireless stores everytime a new product rolls out, the employees having to deal with another company’s ridiculous customer base. I digress.
Have you ever thought that our impatience might lead to products being rushed out the door? Sure, you might think that a big company like RIM works on their own schedule, but it doesn’t take a marketing genius to understand “hype”. I’m sure RIM wants their latest out on the floor quicker than, say, Palm or Motorola, just to be like us with their new devices and say “we were here first”. Maybe they, like us, get all excited and end up with small little backlashes about, say, a cramped keyboard or other things that might lack instead of taking their time with things in the first place.
And the features – yes, I know. GPS and Wi-Fi and all of those things are exciting and are quickly becoming great productivity tools. But if you’re in dire need for GPS and don’t have that functionality on the 8700 you’ve got with one year left on the contract? Get a GPS puck and try it out. See if you like it. Now, you can’t do the same with wi-fi, but hey, it’ll be there in a year when you can upgrade. I don’t mean to underplay the importance of these functions, just trying to get you folks to cool your jets for a second.
So what device is out now? How about the one that’s on your hip? You know it’s out, you know it works, and you know it functions the way you want it to (well, let’s hope). Have a year left on your contract? Just hold your horses until then, and hey, maybe there’ll be a deal on these 8300s by then.
I suppose my main point here is that our “evolved” society looks ahead too much. The old adage of “live in the now” is quickly becoming one of my favourites, and maybe the BlackBerry world could try it on for size – just for a little bit. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got 9XXX devices to play with.