• BB 9780 vs iPhone 4 in Vegas?

    True Story

    Vacation last week was in Las Vegas, and the following incident actually took place. First of all, if you know me, I am BlackBerry through-and-through, so I am going to make every effort to not embellish or otherwise editorialize; I will state the facts as they occurred. However, I will not hide the fact that I smiled, or rather grinned, as I walked back to my hotel room.

    I was walking down one of the Bellagio walkways, on the South side of the man-made lake where they have the fountain shows at night. This is a beautiful lush green area (thanks to the water at nearby Lake Meade) and it is generally full of tourists taking pictures. From the walkway, if you face North, there are trees/bushes in front of the large Bellagio lake. In the background are a number of Vegas casino/hotels, including Paris, Bally's, Bill's and Caesar's Palace. It is a very popular place to take pictures.

    As I was walking, I passed under a covered area. There was a young couple looking at the view. As I was passing by, the man beckoned to me and asked if I would mind taking a picture of them with the lake in the background. Of course, I agreed.

    He handed me an iPhone 4. I could tell it was a 4 because it was Verizon. He showed me on the screen, while we were standing in the shade, where I would touch to take the picture. They posed; I touched; we looked. The background, drenched in sunlight, had washed out the features of the couple, who were standing in the shade. All one could see was black figures with a Las Vegas background. I said, "Let's move out into the sun and try again!" We moved out into the sun and began to pose the same shot - but I could no longer see the image in the screen. In direct sunlight, the screen had washed out and I couldn't get them centered in the picture. I aimed and shot, but the couple of photos I took were still lacking correct light balance, and, of course, the couple was not centered. And, they were still black figures against a Las Vegas background.

    I offered to use my Bold 9780, which also has a 5 MP camera like the iPhone, and see if that would work better. The guy sneered "Ugh, a BlackBerry" but I said "Let's try it, we can't lose!"

    We moved back into the shaded area, and I took two pictures of the couple there. The camera on the 9780 adjusted wonderfully and the couple were clear in the photo, along with the background lake/casinos. We moved out into direct sunlight for a couple more photos, and the screen on the BlackBerry brightened up nicely and I could see clearly where to aim the camera. The pictures, again, balanced out nicely.

    I said "Well, there ya go!" and asked him to turn on his Bluetooth so I could send the pics over. He told me that on the iPhone he can't transfer files from another device using Bluetooth. I said "You can't be serious - you can't send files with Bluetooth?" (When I got back to the hotel room, I looked at the iPhone specs at GSMArena and confirmed). I told him "I have Motorola flip phones from 2004 that can Bluetooth files. Are you sure?" He answered that either the phone could not, or he didn't know how. I then told him "Well, the pictures are on my microSD - I can just put the memory card in your phone for a minute and you can copy them. Does it Hot Swap?" He just shook his head and told me the iPhone does not have a memory card slot.

    I got his phone number and sent the 4 pictures to him using MMS. He said Thanks, and we went our separate ways.

    So, my 9780 had:
    • A better screen (it was usable in direct sunlight, whereas at least this gentleman's iPhone screen experienced severe wash-out - almost as bad as a Nokia)
    • A better camera (features of the people were clearly visible against a bright background, and on the iPhone the subjects were blacked out)
    • Could do the simple task of a Bluetooth file transfer, which apparently the iPhone is not designed to do
    • And has a microSD slot, which Apple apparently did not bother installing.

    But, I have to admit, the iPhone did have a bigger screen, and it was cooler to be seen with in Vegas.

    Comments 4 Comments
    1. Capdot's Avatar
      Jesus, mark....

      ahem.. You forgot to mention that the 9780 has a trackpad and that the iphone doesn't.
    1. BHP77's Avatar
      Inexperience. Lol.

      Touch to focus, BB can't do that. HDR, he obviously needed a BB because the features of a iPhone are too much for him. Lol

      Who sends files using Bluetooth??? Your 5 MP camera is no where near as good as the 5MP on the iPhone. Don't fool yourself.

      Glad you got a kick out of it mark, you're still living in a dream world though. Poke poke.
    1. Delfim's Avatar
      The practicallity of the BB is accentuated. The iPhone is like a convertible. Its a great show off but misses on important needs. Like when it rains and the hood gets jammed...
      Nice Mark.
      I had a similar situation in Monaco years ago. The 3Gs I had was no match for my wife's old BB Curve.
    1. Mark Stone's Avatar
      Well, frankly, I'm not an expert on iPhones at all but it seems that whenever I've seen one face-to-face and compared it directly with my last two BB devices (the 9700 and the 9780) the iPhones have not stacked up very well. I've done this with two 3Gs and now two iPhone 4s, one of which belongs to my boss. Granted, the users of those devices may or may not have been experienced, however the devices themselves have been about equal in video ability to the BBs, have been poorer in camera abilities (as demonstrated in Vegas), are much poorer in organizational abilities (calendar, recordkeeping, security), have larger screens but that wash out in bright sunlight. As far as browsers, I've never compared the two. I'm surprised that they have limited Bluetooth to only being able to use with headsets when many modern computer devices and mobile phones are equipped to use Bluetooth to transfer files. It's just a norm that we've come to expect, and most smartphones and even feature phones for the last 7 years can transfer files using it. The microSD issue I don't think is that important, because the iPhones have a lot of memory built in. However, it is convenient to just pull out my microSD and pop it into my Netbook and click copy, but I guess you can plug the iPhone directly into a computer using USB and do the same thing.

      Perhaps iPhones are better than BlackBerrys - they certainly sell better. But my practical experience, although limited, is telling me the opposite. I have nothing against Apple at all, as a matter of fact I'll be first in line to tell you that the iPhone is the most important mobile device to be introduced ever - it changed the way we think about mobile devices, it revolutionized our UI experience, and it outsells pancakes. Android exists only because something needed to challenge the iPhone. However, in practical use, they don't seem to stand up to my Bolds.
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