I was slightly amazed by this post over at RIMarkable.  For a fan of any particular style of device to be so blunt and honest about their favorite device is refreshing.

What I want to say to Robb Dunewood about this is that, yes in comparison to the current state-of-the-art in Palm and Windows Mobile devices, the added functionality is behind the curve.  But that dismisses the advances in the devices and software themselves.

When the BlackBerry came out several years ago, it really reminded me of an overgrown pager.  And that is really how I viewed it for a long time.  The functionality was little more than that of a two-way pager.  Now fast-forward to today and you can do a side-by-side comparison with a Treo or an HTC Wizard based device for phone & PIM functions and it is a LOT closer.  (I think the Treo 700p would win the PIM ‘war’ at the moment, though I have seen one yet.)

The truth is that there are currently three completely viable mobile platforms (Windows Mobile, BlackBerry, Palm) and one runner up (Symbian).  You can get good push-mail and PIM functions on BlackBerry, Palm, Windows Mobile, and Symbian devices.  If you want to get advanced functionality, it drops to really two options – Palm and Windows Mobile.

The interesting thing that has started to change my perception of BlackBerry is the expanding number of 3rd party applictions.  That is a true indicator of a growing, robust platform.

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