I know little about the G1–I don’t know whether it’s sold in Canada–but the choice between phones with keyboards, such as most Blackberry units, and touch-screen phones such as the iPhone, basically boils down to “email”. If email is your primary purpose for using the phone, you’ll be better off with one with a keyboard. If not, you can get a touch-screen.
Touch-screen phones have soft keyboards that are great for texting and okay for limited email, and they have the bonus ability of adapting to the particular use or language of the moment, but for making longer messages, a physical keyboard with real keys is still better.
Beyond that, all these phones have web browsers, music and video players, access to maps, etc, etc. Apple has the advantage of the most developed app store, but the others are catching up.
The other consideration is network coverage where you want to use the phone. The iPhone runs on GSM and related 3G networks only. Various Blackberry models are available for both GSM and CDMA networks. I’m not sure about others.
I have a G1; I have no experience with other smartphones.
The G1 is awesome if you’re into all the Google stuff. My G1 gets my Gmail messages automatically - I don’t even use the Gmail Notifier on my PC anymore, I just listen for my G1 to beep. The contact list is synchronized with the Gmail contact list, and the calendar app with Google Calendar. The Google Maps app on the G1 has most of the functions of the web version, including the same list of local businesses (no need for a separate Yellow Pages app), and of course the current location based on GPS or other methods.
I have to say though, that web browsing can be slow on complex web sites. A simple web site is fine, a complex layout like Slate or Huffington Post will take forever to load. I’m not sure if it’s any better on other smartphones though.
It’s my first “smart phone” with a Qwerty keyboard/internet/touchscreen etc., and I love it. And while I’ve never used a Blackberry, several of my friends do, and they are all envious of my phone. (My dad in particular was like, “Now my phone is a piece of shit!” which made me laugh cuz if anybody uses their phone like mad, it’s my dad. And he wants mine.)
I’ve never used the iPhone so I can’t comment on it; I’ve been with T-Mobile for years so it made sense to go with their version.
You might want to add the HTC Fuze to your shopping list.
I’m in the same predicament as you. I’m using an old Katana still and I can’t decide what Smartphone to upgrade to. I hate iTunes and generally am not excited about getting an iPhone but the web browsing and apps are impossible to beat right now. On the flipside the keyboard is a fucking nightmare if you like to send messages longer than one line.
The Blackberry is the best for text and email by a wide margin. So far they’ve failed with media type stuff, though I haven’t tested the Bold yet. The Blackberry Storm seems like it just combines the biggest flaws on the Blackberry and iPhone into one device. Yuck.
I’ve yet to play with the G1 or the Fuze (both are HTC phones) but I’m eager to test them out. I love the big screen with slide out keypad, that’s precisely what I want, but I don’t know how good the web browsers and apps are. I hope other companies come up with something similar to the iPhone app store.
Personally I think I’m going to sit back as see what develops with the Andriod phones for a bit and see how the HTC phones work out before I dive in with a new phone.
Yeah. I am in the market for a new phone, as well. I am leaning heavily towards the iPhone. Partly, because the iPhone’s large userbase guarantees a lot of apps being created for it. And, partly because ATT has a widespread network.
I would like the google Phone. But, after taking a look at T-Mobile’s map I decided I didn’t want it. My circumstances are unique in that I am in Philadelphia temporarily, and after my treatments are done I will be heading back to Santa Barbara, CA. Even though, T-Mobile is so strong here. In SB it’s network isn’t nearly as strong. And, the trip across the country will cross over all sorts of white spots on the tmobile map.
I hear the Palm Pre got some good press. But, I am not sure about Sprint. Their track record of allowing new and different apps onto their phones without charging highly for them is not great.
I tried out the Blackberry Storm and while I don’t think it is as bad as it’s bad reviews. It’s not nearly as nice as the iPhone.
My first instinct is to sit back and wait. But, I really do like what the iPhone offers and I think it will be really useful for my cross country trip. So, I would rather have it before I leave than after.
I am also enamored with the idea of jailbreaking an iPhone. That opens up the possibilities from large to humongous. I have to read more about it and make sure jailbreaking does not break anything in the standard OS. But, I like the idea of opening up my options with a product I buy. I wish Apple was a little bit more onboard with it, so there wasn’t a constant battle between jailbreakers and Apple.
I haven’t had much experience with the G1, but I did look at the iPhone and the Blackberry Storm.
The Storm got bad reviews, and deservedly so. I think the next software generation is better, but the bottom line was that the software was embarrassingly buggy. When I tried it out the interface was sluggish, unresponsive and practically unusable.
I really do believe the iPhone interface is a significant achievement in small consumer electronics. I have not seen any other phone handle web browsing in any way that could be considered remotely usable. The iPhone appears to do a much better job of rendering pages and providing a way to interact when browsing that is intuitive and responsive. Phone user interfaces have been something that has annoyed me for quite some time now, it seems that the software engineers hired by phone manufacturers were totally incompetent, or the interface was just an afterthought. The iPhone may not be perfect, but in comparison to all the turds that surround it it really shines.
I have unrelated reasons for sticking with Verizon, so the iPhone is not an option for me. Given that the Storm is still bad I am not buying a “smart” phone at all at this stage. I really do want an iPhone, so I hope they will become available on Verizon at some stage (hopefully the stupid exclusivity agreement won’t be extended).
I don’t know much about the G1 outside that it is available on T-Mobile, which would be a deal breaker even if I wasn’t tied to Verizon. I do not believe their network, data or voice, is nearly as built out as Verizon or AT&T.
I’d like to add to this conversation, and I think it is appropriately within the scope of the OP: based on my sensitivity to lousy web browsing, are there any new Blackberries that do a good job of addressing this? I’ll admit it has been a while since I looked at them (besides the Storm). Any that provide a passable experience?
Verizon runs on CDMA, not GSM, so current iPhones will not work on it. Verizon has a long-term plan to shift their network towards a fourth-generation digital standard that will be common with GSM, but that’s years off, and the current generation of hardware definitely doesn’t support that.
I’m aware of GSM versus CDMA, but would expect that Apple would release a CDMA version of the iPhone if they were not in an exclusivity agreement with AT&T. This is what I am hoping for, although that is a long way off.
WebOS-running Pre’s aren’t even for sale yet, and sites like that one act like PalmOS is completely dead, which puzzles me. (I’m not :dubious:-ing you, but rather Gizmodo and their ilk.)
True, Palm has officially announced that no more PalmOS devices will be released, but for somebody who wants a smartphone today something from the Treo line (like a Centro) is a perfectly viable option.