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Time to Ditch Apple Inc. iPhone and Go Back to BlackBerry Ltd. (and Buy the Stock too)

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July 9, 2014

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Time to Ditch Apple Inc. iPhone and Go Back to BlackBerry Ltd.  (and Buy the Stock too)

It’s been a really swell party, with me and my 3 generations of Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhones. But it’s time to go back to the grown-ups world of BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY)(TSE:BB). After 4 years with an iPhone, there’s one key reality that has dawned on me daily for just about the last year: If you want a toy, buy an iPhone. But if you want a tool, you need BlackBerry.

I first ventured into iPhone land after my BlackBerry tumbled out of my pocked and into a sewer as I was tumbling into a cab after a raucous night in downtown Toronto. At the time, I was particularly open to the idea because I was in a new relationship with my Macbook Pro, which, after 20 years as a Microsoft drone was like waking up out of a coma. Apple, at the time, was making all the right moves under Steve Jobs, and BlackBerry was just embarking on a downward spiral which has only recently reversed course.

Apple vs. BlackBerry

Apple does some things very well. The interconnectivity and syncronicity of accounts across imap and PoP iterations across multiple devices still has to be the one aspect of Apple devices and software that I appreciate the most. Things like intuitively finding the right network, detecting bluetooth and now texting to other iCloud users on devices other than the iPhone are all positives.

But things like contacts and calendars seem to be a perennial thorn in Apple’s side. For example, not being able to just dump contacts to a csv or txt file is a source of continuous wonderment for me. Why try to force me into your shoebox if I don’t want to be in your shoebox?

Now don’t get me wrong. BlackBerry will have its fair share of device-specific deviations to frustrate and annoy, I’m sure. But I’m thinking they will be minuscule in comparison to what I’ve been enduring with Apple for the last 4 years.

The main catalyst in the return to BlackBerry is the keyboard. Four years of trying to master the touchless keypad has taught me an irrefutable truth: touchless keypads suck. At least for someone like me, whose hands are generally larger than the average.(but not my feet…what’s up with that??).

At any rate, I’ve literally started dreaming of the glorious quick-paced downtown lemming race, where on crowded sidewalks and with satchel dangling from one hand I could easily publish one-handed text messages to colleagues, multi-tasking effectively across transportation and communication with every step.

If you’ve ever tried to do that with an iPhone, it will be a miracle if the result is intelligible. More likely it will say something like ‘sorry running llama…be there in finicky’. Useless.

Plus, if I have to do one more iOS update, I’m going to throw my phone against the wall.

There are other aspects of the iPhone which experience has taught me render it less suitable for business and more suitable to juvenile pursuits. Facebook is a juvenile pursuit, Twitter is an important tool that drives traffic to my web site.

One might consider one’s music collection more of a ‘juvenile pursuit’, but I can assure you, as a writer, the ability to block out the surrounding cacophony in crowded places makes reliable access to thinking music an absolute pre-requisite in many cases. And that’s one area where iPhone, and in fact, all Apple devices have fallen down for years, and seem to be able to find fresh depths of stupidity when it comes to the architecture of that notorious destroyer of musical libraries – iTunes. iTunes, and its accomplices Match and Genius, have collectively wiped out nearly all of my 90’s and early 00’s obscure playlists of old Pete Tong and Sasha and the other now-impossible-to-buy recordings.

While I appreciate the information technology industry’s persistent delusion that somehow forcing users into proprietary management software for everything different file type is somehow smart business, BlackBerry’s ability to just store mp3’s as mp3’s in simple file architectures is one of those long-missed simplicities about BlackBerry that I’m excited to re-experience. My iPhone is such a complete waste of time when it comes to music that I never use it to store songs anymore, and will only stream audio from online radio stations when convenient.

I’m Not the Only One Abandoning Apple

Let’s face it. Since the demise of Steve Jobs, Apple is looking increasingly like a ship adrift. Yes, sales continue to be strong, and the iPad is indeed the greatest thing since sliced bread, but apart from that, the strategy as it pertains to business use can only be categorized as random.

It’s as if Apple wants to attract an adult business crowd, but insists that if you dine with Apple you must sit at the kid’s table. Sounds like fun for one meal, maybe. But every meal? No thanks.

Even the U.S. Military has reversed direction on what initially appeared to be their intention to support Apple devices.

According to an article at Nextgov.com:

“A Pentagon system intended to secure a mix of brand name smartphones for warfighters will primarily support BlackBerrys when the tool starts launching later this month, according to Defense Department officials.

About 80,000 BlackBerrys and 1,800 Defense-owned Apple and Android-based phones and tablets will begin being hooked up to the new management system on Jan. 31, officials announced on Friday.”

Is BlackBerry Stock Finally a ‘Buy’?

This all leads to the question, is BalckBerry now a ‘buy’? It certainly is according to some people. In an interview with Damian Wojcichowsky, senior technology analyst with Jacob Securities in Toronto, the case was made that new BlackBerry CEO John Chen’s turnaround strategy was indeed just that.

Midas-Letter-financial-radio-podcast-thumb

Listen to the interview with Jacob Securities Technology Analyst Damian Wojcichowsky discussing BlackBerry CEO John Chen’s turnaround strategy:

According to Wojcichowsky, “I mentioned that the bears focus in on the hardware business and whether or not they’re going to resume selling devices. I think that’s the wrong way to look at it. I think you want to look at where QNX is selling through – we heard the Ford announcement that they’re ripping out Microsoft and using QNX in their automobiles. That announcement on its own put Blackberry through QNX into something like 70% of the automobiles that are being sold out there. Those are good numbers. Those are things that I don’t think are being reflected in the stock price at this point.”

BlackBerry stock is up 56% since touching a low of $7.82 back in April 2014. While the company is not out of the woods yet, it certainly looks like the strategy to focus on business users is having the desired effect. It’s certainly working on me.

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About Author

James West

(65) Readers Comments

  1. B J
    July 9, 2014 at 12:39 pm

    Yes! Excellent! Take the mask off of Apple. as a serious "business tool". Nothing could be worse in terms of security ruggedness reliability and battery power... and communication - email notifications etc. Blackberry 10 was designed for multitasking business, and now with running 98 percent of android apps (securely sandboxed) there is no reason whatsoever to go android but a LOT to go Blackberry.

  2. !magine
    July 9, 2014 at 1:05 pm

    Q10 Passport and Z50 sound to be right up this guy's alley should he allow himself the time to learn the OS.

    • ATInsider
      July 20, 2014 at 2:24 pm

      Oh can't wait for the Z50 power house. The Passport is the most innovative smart phone ever created to date.

  3. Whocares
    July 9, 2014 at 1:27 pm

    Where is BB standing now in this segment? Damn, big companies are dumping BB for iPhone and android phones. You must be out of your mind to think BB is still up there. Wake up. It will end up like Motorola in...oblivion.

    • DEVVVV
      July 9, 2014 at 1:33 pm

      the guy who wrote this story has BB shares I think.

      • MidasLetter.com
        July 9, 2014 at 1:38 pm

        No actually I don't. If I did, it would be disclosed.

      • LessThanCrazyDevvv
        July 9, 2014 at 2:02 pm

        You are a complete idiot and joke Devvv. Trolling every Blackberry article online and bashing and making no sense. Get a life

      • LP
        July 9, 2014 at 2:23 pm

        DEVVVV go home... you're drunk (permanently!)

      • guest
        July 9, 2014 at 3:45 pm

        I AM THE ANTI-DEVVVV. You get me in a vendetta kind of mood, you tell the angels in heaven you never seen evil so singularly personified as you did in the face of the man who pwned you.

      • me1
        July 10, 2014 at 6:50 am

        Hey look it is.....The Troll who calls himself Devvvv....

    • itzjustmeh
      July 10, 2014 at 7:01 am

      Trolling BlackBerry is so last year..

    • wvobiwan
      July 12, 2014 at 11:51 am

      Behind the times. Big companies can't take the constant and massive security breaches brought on by iPwn and Androot.

  4. Christophe Piquemal
    July 9, 2014 at 2:05 pm

    Author, you're right ;) I never used something smoother and efficient as a BB10 phone. My first BB was a Z10, and now a Z30; and I really think I'll never go back to iPhones or Droid crap. And Passport is coming soon now :)

  5. LP
    July 9, 2014 at 2:24 pm

    I would never trade My Z30 for any other phone in the market... I just LOVE IT!!

  6. sunHammer
    July 9, 2014 at 3:05 pm

    Same sentiments here. After years of being an iPhone user, I'm back to Black with a Z30 - despite it also being a touch-screen, I can type *perfectly* and effortlessly with little to no mistakes, whereas everyday for the past 4 years it would be a struggle on my iPhone to pound out a perfectly-spelled sentence. I have no regrets, the BB10 OS is wonderful and fast; transferring music is simple, no iTunes nightmare; I have a constant VPN-connection to my home PC so I can stream any video or music or edit any document on my computer (this is built-in to BB10!).... and the easy 20+ hours of battery life I get out of this despite using it constantly, which is twice the battery power I'd have on my iphone. I also get phone signal where no iPhone user can get it - inside elevators, underground, and in remote rural areas. * I am still long AAPL

  7. bob
    July 9, 2014 at 3:53 pm

    Is this article for real? I just clicked on it for a laugh.

    • John Peters
      July 10, 2014 at 2:43 pm

      Everything the author said is 100% spot on.

  8. Majipoor
    July 9, 2014 at 3:58 pm

    I guess you are trying to be the next Macalope victim. For sure you are a strong contender.

  9. Bill Chalmers
    July 9, 2014 at 4:06 pm

    Q10 here. Wasn't sure if I would like it but wow. The thing is amazing. GIve yourself two weeks to figure out the OS and you will never look back. Its different, but in a good way. Once you are on to it it is amazing. Wife has the latest and greatest samsung and its like a fisher price toy compared to the BB. Business emails get pounded out in seconds. Web browser is the fastest I have ever seen on a mobile device. Itunes is the definition of walled garden. Except its not a garden. Its a nuclear waste dumping ground. How people keep buying apple products is beyond me. Have some classic essential mixes on the BB myself.....no way Im going to let Itunes call Grooverider "blues rock" Go Blackberry and let the kids have the fisher price phones.

  10. Tomislav Dragos
    July 9, 2014 at 4:48 pm

    New BlackBerry (RIM)management deserves respect. It is nice to see that is BB growing to be strong again.

  11. WalterB
    July 9, 2014 at 9:11 pm

    Wow, really great article! Obviously I'm a blackberry 10 fan also. I disagree on the keyboard part, my Z30 is a great keyboard on! I will also agree that the blackberry 10 phones blow apple phones away for functionality.

  12. McBob
    July 10, 2014 at 3:36 am

    Great to see the Blackberry users of the world are out in force defending their once proud phones. All 15 of them.

    • Frank
      July 10, 2014 at 6:04 am

      Whaddya mean McBob, there are 16 of us :) BlackBerry Z30 is the best work phone I have used.

      • Almost Sober
        July 10, 2014 at 7:14 am

        17 now. The straightforward simplicity of BB10 has me hooked. I now own two. A Z10 as my daily driver and a Q5 on the go when I need something a bit less smashable. My office is a mix of devices and I'm the only one in it that doesn't want to smash my phone on a daily basis. I'm of the opinion that most BB10 bashers on the internet are bashing to stay with the trend and have never even touched a new BlackBerry. To all of you who continue to bash without actual experience with the device, you have no idea what you're missing.

        • சாதிக்
          July 10, 2014 at 9:05 am

          18th here. And another 85m queued behind.

          • Guest
            July 17, 2014 at 5:15 pm

            #19 here!

    • me1
      July 10, 2014 at 6:52 am

      McBob / iSheep I assume....you clearly can't count and can't read share prices.......not defending for defending sake but basing it all on fact and user experience.

    • wvobiwan
      July 12, 2014 at 11:49 am

      Enterprise users seem to like the fact that their BlackBerry phones can't be jailbroken, rooted, hacked, or spied upon.

    • Naegi
      July 17, 2014 at 1:54 pm

      make them 19

      • Pablo Wegesend
        July 17, 2014 at 5:16 pm

        ok, I'm #20

  13. Sixtyseven
    July 10, 2014 at 3:59 am

    Blackberry phones Work Horses. Finally you will see more and more people coming back to Blackberry. Welcome back my friend and also buy some shares as well it going to go much much higher.

    • FS
      July 11, 2014 at 7:45 am

      Well, before my BlackBerry Z30, I had an iPhone. Hmm, I had used it for a while and I was in the stone age again :-) I love the new BlackBerry 10 OS, it's easy and very fast to handle.

  14. wingsy
    July 10, 2014 at 7:14 am

    Hands down, this is the funniest article I've seen all week.

    • John Peters
      July 10, 2014 at 2:43 pm

      You're obviously stuck in the iBubble. Everything the author said is absolutely valid.

      • 3ricss0n
        July 10, 2014 at 4:28 pm

        who knows wingsy could probably be in that erroneous "android is secure" bubble

    • southerndinner
      July 12, 2014 at 9:50 am

      No kidding. BB!9 is trash

      • wvobiwan
        July 12, 2014 at 11:46 am

        BlackBerry skipped from OS7 to BB10. Get some facts first?

  15. xBURK
    July 10, 2014 at 8:11 am

    Wow, finally the truth comes out. Nice article.

  16. சாதிக்
    July 10, 2014 at 9:09 am

    Two years ago, BlackBerry phones were limited to under-4 inch market segment. Now, new models are available in over-5 inch segment. But, Apple's creative juice has dried up since iPhone 4 launch. Qwerty is only a part of the BlackBerry user experience. The OS is the real story.

  17. harkonnenesque
    July 12, 2014 at 9:42 am

    This article is ridiculous. No amount of biased "journalism" from a bunch of hacks will save it.

  18. southerndinner
    July 12, 2014 at 9:49 am

    BB is garbage

  19. wvobiwan
    July 12, 2014 at 11:44 am

    BlackBerry's new devices are still the best business phones on the market, they are indeed business tools, not consumer toys. But BlackBerry's biggest business asset is their BES server, by far. Blows away all others.

  20. Millan Jankovic
    July 14, 2014 at 5:22 pm

    A friend had to delete all her music on her iphone to make room for pictures. She came over and didnt have music to go out for a run and im like "you can just take music from my computer" then she told me that she couldnt and it reminded me of how much I hate itunes

  21. M.A
    July 17, 2014 at 1:53 pm

    I super agree! '' If you want a toy, buy an iPhone. But if you want a tool, you need BlackBerry''

  22. Bob Cole
    July 17, 2014 at 1:54 pm

    I'm not always thrilled with my iphone but I bought a playbook and it's horrible. You need decent apps to make mobile work and I have no confidence apps will work on the bb phones any better than they did on the playbook. Although playbook did not get os10 but still. I have no faith it's any better until I see someone using one, which I haven't.

    • Onlyfacts
      July 17, 2014 at 4:25 pm

      Are you aware the OS 10 can run about 85% of the current android apps? Things are only getting better. Get a Z30....promise you you'll never go back to whatever you're using now.

      • bob cole
        August 3, 2014 at 3:18 pm

        AT&T won't carry the Z30 or I would probably get one. Maybe I 'll wait for the square phone.

  23. Peter John
    July 17, 2014 at 3:31 pm

    Me A Die hard Blackberry Fan. From Curve 8520, Upgraded to Bold 9900 and Now to a Z10. Many of the people used to mock when i owned a BB, the Iphone and Droid users. Now With Blackberry Z10, one of the powerful OS on mobile phone that comes handy by supporting APK/Andriod apps, smashed iphone and many android users. Finally. Owning a Blackberry make a value to people , rather than having a phone 5S or a Mack Air book.

  24. Arek Iksinski
    July 17, 2014 at 3:42 pm

    I bought Z10 in May. I am using iPhone 4S (as a company phone). Previously (for private use) I used Sony Xperia SP with crap called Android. Z10 is amazing. iPhone and Android phones are toys. Z10 is a tool that really helps you on daily basis. I am not going to get back to Android.

  25. Mitch Kehn
    July 17, 2014 at 5:23 pm

    I've been using a Z10 for a little over a year. My partner has an iPhone and everything is faster on the Z10 and with faster with one hand use. It's the ergonomics of BB10 that makes 100 little things less tedious.

  26. green_ember
    July 17, 2014 at 7:02 pm

    I had a Z10 and got rid of it.... as soon as the Z30 came out! Every new OS update makes this phone better and better. The virtual keyboard is fantastic, the reception of the Paratek antenna is superb, the sound from the speakers is quite loud and very clear. The ease of installing the very few Android apps I wanted was surprising. All I had to do was download the Amazon app store using my browser and voila! The browser by the way is very fast, scoring some of the highest mobile scores on HTML5test and Ringmark. The reader mode of the browser is great too. Most importantly of all though is the UI is brutally efficient once you learn it and the messaging experience of the Hub can't be topped. People that say the OS is not intuitive have mistaken their definition of intuitive with a term we call learning curve. It's steep, but it's sooooooo worth it!

  27. Padam
    July 17, 2014 at 7:54 pm

    Blackberry 10.2 OS and hub is so much convenient for messaging and also offers most of the apps what other platforms has, I used iphone 5, Nexus 5 and Samsung Note2 and definitely liking the Blackberry. One has to try Blackberry 10 smartphones and than there is no going back.

  28. Nilesh Kishore Shirke
    July 18, 2014 at 12:23 am

    There is simply no Point in Fights .. Apple is More about Music than Mails.. while Blackberry has more about Corporate level Calender, Mails, Organisation than Music/videos .. !!! Blackberry Over I phone any day .. unless i am old and i just want to listen to songs whole day long, but baa.. a cd player or tv will do just fine.. in entertainment. Now a days people are moving to a Proper communication device and fine tuned accessories rather than a Music, entertainment device.. Android supplies all games needs, PC/Xbox/PS3 supplies the heavy gamer needs and apple stays somewhat between.. and the Status factor is all diminished in APPLE already.. I believe Blackberry will soon be a leading champion in this race..

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  34. ATInsider
    July 20, 2014 at 2:17 pm

    BlackBerry 10 represents the future of mobility. Android and iOS don't have the capabilities to compete with it technologically. BB10 is not only a productivity work horse, it's elegant, intuitive, smooth flowing, secure, easy to use and intelligent. All Apple and Samsung via Android have is market share and mass colourful propaganda style marketing. BlackBerry needs smart strategic marketing. Once people try BB10 for a fair amount of time, and understand the OS, going back to either iOS and/or Android "WILL" Irritate them.

  35. Zealot
    July 24, 2014 at 9:48 pm

    Follow the leader, BlackBerry said to us : Thou shall say that BB is the best phones everrrrrrr! And, the competition wich is also good like Samsung and Apple are the devil, because of their HERESYYY!! Common seriously, seems like a CULT guys, you're not better than the fake apple nerds..

  36. Pingback: iPhone vs. BlackBerry: The Handset Smackdown - Midas Letter

  37. rocmon
    January 9, 2015 at 2:20 pm

    How lovely to read something encouraging for the state of the fad!

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  39. Anon
    March 2, 2015 at 6:29 am

    I agree BB is undervalued company and brand because they have great marketing point: safe, robust, professional phones. Problem is they spend to much time and resources on marginal things like design of keyboard and to little on commercial pit points like quality camera and sound. Whose idea was to market them self as: BB android app-s now work with us to. Where is their product positioning goals? If their marketing department sees brand lower than the cheapest commercial software out there, therefore it is job of CEO to relieve them of that burden or he can join them anytime soon. Step to cooperation with Samsung might be right direction here, as Samsung have resources and know how in commercial market. Perhaps we'll see BB restructuring into mobile security firm one way or another.

  40. chyna
    March 23, 2015 at 12:22 am

    the makers of iphones know what they doing even when u buy the phone u still paying money sucking vamps. you want a song u have to buy it thru itunes ughhh

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