Friday, April 03, 2009

A Crackberry User Once More

No, I'm not giving up my iPhone 3g. I love it, I use it constantly, and once jailbroken with useful non Apple apps added, it's exactly what I need in a PDA, a phone, and a portable personal computing device (minus the few Apple induced annoyances).

I've been resisting this for three years at work. Unfortunately, our workload has doubled over the past six months, and is going to double again over the next six months. We've already added one more person, and we NEED to add four more people.

So instead of leading a group of six (including me) I'll be leading a group of 10.

Plus I'm more and more involved in stuff for our CIO, and for the entire enterprise as a whole...

Anyway, yesterday my boss rather pointedly suggested to me that it was past time for me to have a mobile device 'pon which I could send and recieve corporate email.

Now technically speaking, I know a hack to let my iPhone do that; but that wouldn't be enterprise approved, and would be against security policy etc... etc...

Also, corporate mandate is now (well, it actually always had been but up 'til now they weren't enforcing it) that we can't tether, connect, sync, download etc... off our corporate systems with any non corporate devices. No pdas, cellphones, smartphones, external hard drives, or memory cards; and no syncing to external services like gmail or mobileMe.

Understand, my life is run off my outook calendar. I'm double booked 4 hours a day most days; and I can't keep things straight without calendar and contact syncing.

So I will once again be dragged kicking and screaming into crackberry land; and will also be a multi cellphone user once more.

At least it's not like when I was on call for a secured facility. I had my on call phone (secure), my secure phone, my non-secure phone (and yes, they made us have one of each. The ones that operated in both modes weren't out yet), my satellite two way pager, and my personal phone to deal with.

Yes, I was a walking Dilbert cartoon.

They gave me the choice of Sprint, T-Mobile, or Verizon; but if I went through either T-mobile or Sprint I'd have to pay the bill myself and then get reimbursement... Verizon it is then.

Then they gave me the choice of the 8130 (pearl), 8330 (Curve), the 8830, or the 9530 (storm).

Firstly, none of them have WiFi, which irritates the hell out of me. The T-Mobile versions have WiFi, the chipset supports WiFi, but Verizon doesn't want their customers using WiFi, so they disable it.

Also, why are they still offering the old curve and 8830, and not the new 9000 series Bold and 8900 series Curve?

The pearl is just WAY too damn small. I'm guessing it's actually better as a phone than the others, but the keyboard is useless.

The 8330 is heavy, large, and awkward to hold; yet has a worse keyboard than the curve. The whole point of this is remote email access, so a bad keyboard is a dealbreaker. It DOES have quad band capability and a SIM card slot, which is nice; but I don't plan on doing any international roaming with my work cell at the moment.

The storm is cool looking, and has a touchscreen. I HATE the touchscreen. Seriously, the thing actually clicks, like a chicklet keyboard... It's awful.

So the curve it is then.

At least the 8830 has mostly 3g (it's ev-do, but Rev 1 only, no Rev A. So 700k down, and 30k up ) and tethering. Oh and they are throing in the car charger, the leather holster, the bluetooth headset, and the 4gb memory card (remember, no non corporate memory cards allowed).

So at least I won't be stuck with the bill for the stuff, or stuck with a useless phone without it.

So, any worthwhile apps in the blackberry app store? Do they have an SSH client? How about VNC?