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Consumer touchscreen Report – iPhone 3G, BlackBerry Storm, HTC Dream

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iphone htc dream blackberry storm

Sometimes for members of the BlackBerry Nation, it’s easy to miss the forest for the trees. We’re so busy with our PIN to PIN messaging, browser speed trials, network frequency band comparisons, and OS upgrading, that we forget how the rest of the world sees the BlackBerrys that we know and love.

Our sister site, QuicklyBored, which is a mobile consumer entertainment blog, posted a device comparison of the three big touchscreen devices of 2008: the BlackBerry Storm, the iPhone 3G, and HTC Dream (which will be the first smartphone to ship running Google’s Android OS). It’s interesting to see what the average citizen is concerned about when it comes to a smartphone. Consider QB’s top two questions regarding the BlackBerry Storm, for example: will it feature an apps store that can compete with Apple’s, and will it have an accelerometer for sweet lightsaber games?

The HTC Dream G1 vs BlackBerry Storm vs iPhone 3G – A Consumer Report

More BlackBerry Bold Browser Speed Trials Raise Questions, Problems

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Iphone 3G BlackBerry Bold Wifi Browsing Chart

While BlackBerry Cool was the first website on the Internet to bring you competent speed testing of the BlackBerry Bold and iPhone 3G web browsers, it seems as though our initial tests were not as definitive as we would have liked them to be. This past week, we have been working with Kevin from CrackBerry.com, who has been trapped in BlackBerry purgatory trying to get any sort of positive browsing experience. While we suggest you read his two long and passionate posts on the subject (which describe crackberry addiction better than anything else on the Internet), here are the problems in a nutshell:

– The BlackBery Bold from Rogers has some serious issues when you attempt to enable Javascript support while browsing the web over 3G.
– There has to be some sort of issue with the Bold and WiFi/HotSpot Browser that pops up under specific circumstances. I don’t know what is yet, but I’m sure there’s something up.

While we were initially surprised to hear that Kevin had been having such problems, because we had not encountered them at all in our testing. However, out of BlackBerry unity, we agreed to give him some help and adopt his testing methodology. Once we did, it became clear that we were facing (some, but not all of) the same problems as Kevin. Which means that something is going on with the BlackBerry Browser.

Click here to read more about BlackBerry Cool’s BlackBerry Bold Browser testing

Updated: The Definitive BlackBerry Bold versus iPhone 3G Browser Comparison (video)

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iPhone 3G BlackBerry Bold Browser Speed test Screenshot

Update: Just got talking to a couple of our friends at RIM, who said they weren’t surprised by the results of our test. It turns out that the focus of RIM’s development for the new rendering engine in OS 4.6 was in stability, not performance, and the Waterloo crew is still working on speed optimization. What this means is that future OS updates from RIM will require additional speed tests.

While previous results had been contested, we hope to put the BlackBerry Bold versus iPhone 3G browser debate to bed. Taking some time with our brand-spanking-new Bold and QuicklyBored EIC, Kyle McInnes’ iPhone 3G, we put the two beasts through some browsing hoops to see who can get through the fastest. We tested on Wi-Fi only, 3G-only, both with and without JavaScript enabled. Sadly, our results are pretty conclusive – the iPhone’s browser is faster.

To be fair, it’s not by much – maybe a two to three second delay, depending on the site, but it’s enough to notice the difference. We’re also running on BIS, so don’t have enterprise servers doing a lot of the compression for us. The Bold’s browser is still a huge upgrade for BlackBerry, and definitely more enjoyable than what I was using on the Pearl. While we’re calling this test definitive (we ran a series of five tests using multiple sites each time), your mileage may vary – if you’ve got both devices in hand, take some time to wipe the caches and run a few tests. We’d love to hear if our results match up, and love even more to hear if they don’t.

Click here to see the iPhone 3G and BlackBerry Bold Browser speed test

HSBC sticking to BlackBerry

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HSBC

Word has it that HSBC won’t be making that jump to iPhone reported last week. Australian CIO Brenton Hush had made some commentary regarding the possibility of an iPhone rollout, which didn’t really say “no”, but a lot of people took as “maybe”. A few calls to HSBC revealed that “there’s not a snowball’s chance in hell” that the some 200,000-odd BlackBerrys currently deployed internationally would be ousted in favour of the iPhone 3G. Good thing for RIM, because that’s a pretty big contract to lose to the competition.

(Internetnews via Pinstack)

PocketMac update supports Entourage and iTunes

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AppleMac users rejoice! Entourage 2008, designed to emulate much of Microsoft Office, can now support syncing for BlackBerrys released as of May through PocketMac. Devices running OS 4.5 reportedly work like a charm for getting contacts, tasks, and calendar items off your Mac and onto your BlackBerry via Entourage. iTunes support is also in there, although it’s kind of funny that PC users got the iTunes Media Sync first. This is pretty awesome for Mac users everywhere, considering the complete lack of love they tend to get from RIM. Hopefully this will keep enough of them from going with the iPhone instead… Hey, you can always make your BlackBerry look like an iPhone with themes like iBerry in Today, Icon and Zen styles. Head on over to the PocketMac site to download version 4.1.25.

(via TUAW)

HSBC trading in 200,000 BlackBerrys for iPhone 3Gs?

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HSBC sign

HSBC, the gigantor multinational banking firm, is considering making the jump from BlackBerry to iPhone for upwards of 200,000 of their employees.

“We are actually reviewing iPhones from a HSBC Group perspective … and when I say that, I mean globally… You know, it’s a big decision, especially when you have an existing fleet out there,” [HSBC's Australia and New Zealand chief information officer Brenton Hush] said. “We always explore the potential application of new technologies and this is no different.”

This is not only a big deal for RIM who could be losing a major customer, but could easily set precedent for other major companies who would see that the iPhone works for serious business. Many enterprises are not willing to give up BlackBerry’s rock-solid security, but it’s interesting to see that a financial firm that’s dealing with sensitive numbers all the time are confident enough to consider the iPhone a solution. Of course, no decision has been made yet, and the it’s still a pretty low priority for the HSBC CIO, but we’ll all be watching to see if the change is made. Some remain optimistic that RIM’s push into consumer territory will be more successful than Apple’s move into enterprise, and how this HSBC deal ends up will decide if that’s true.

(via ZDNet)