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iPhone, BlackBerry users still split in tastes

updated 02:30 pm EDT, Mon April 28, 2008

iPhone and BBerry Split

In spite of attempts to blur distinctions, BlackBerry and iPhone owners are still fundamentally opposed when it comes to what they like about their phones, according to new research from ChangeWave. Research in Motion's attempts to focus on media functions with the Curve and Pearl have still resulted in most customers preferring the phones for e-mail, with 56 percent of users citing BlackBerry line's signature "push" mail as their primary desire. Nearly all other features were distant concerns, with ease of use, the keyboard, and size all cited by less than 10 percent of the responding group.

Owners of Apple's phone are more balanced but focus on very different aspects of their device. About 36 percent prefer the iPhone for the integration of its Internet, media, and phone functions, while 27 percent like the device for its touch interface and 16 percent cite overall ease of use. E-mail support doesn't register as a significant desire, ChangeWave says.

Conversely, BlackBerry users are much more likely to complain about technical limitations of their phones than iPhone users. The largest complaints stem from the web browser and see 13 percent complaining about either its feature set or its relatively limited speed, particularly on the EDGE networks used by owners of GSM versions. About 11 percent complain about the keyboard; Pearl owners in particular dislike the SureType technique that allows fuller typing on the narrow phone but which introduces slowdowns and typing errors.

iPhone users are most likely to criticize the requirement to use AT&T and its slow EDGE network in the US.

ChangeWave also notes that most of the desired features for a next-generation iPhone are likely to be satisfied by June's Worldwide Developer Conference. The largest portion asks for 3G (19 percent), which is widely believed to be making its debut at the Apple event; third-party native software (18 percent) and GPS (15 percent) are also highly ranked. Apple has already confirmed third-party support with its upcoming iPhone 2.0 software and is rumored to be integrating GPS with a new hardware refresh.

E-mail integration and voice recognition are also considered significant concerns at 10 and 8 percent respectively, though the former will be at least partly resolved with full Exchange support in the coming iPhone software update.

by MacNN Staff



  1. vasic

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Voice recognition???

    That voice recognition made it to the list, with such a high percentage, indicates that iPhone users have extremely high expectations from their phone. Less than 3% of ordinary cell phone users are aware that such a feature exists, and even fewer actually made (rather significant) effort to set it up, record voice commands and actually use them for dialing.

    It will be interesting if Jobs & the gang would read anything into this little statistical tidbit and take any action on it.

  1. Schatz

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Mirrors my experience

    I carry a Blackberry 8700 for work and have an iPod Touch for myself. BB is hard to beat for corporate email. Easier to type on too. The Touch (and iPhone) is a much cooler, multimedia gadget. I don't know if I could adapt to it for a primary email device though.

    Apple browser is easily best on a mobile device. Photo app is incredible. It facinates young and old alike.


  1. njfuzzy

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Bodes well for my stock

    This suggests to me that the next iPhone will be a much bigger hit.

    It builds on all of the hype of the first launch, and has all of the features of the existing phone. However, it will add features that current iPhone users want-- 3G, third party apps, and probably a GPS. Even better, it responds to what Blackberry users like and dislike about their current phones-- especially push email.

    I think the next iPhone will close the gap, to the point where fewer people will have a compelling reason to prefer another phone. This means wider adoption. Adding features that current users want means upsale.

    It all means good things for my stock in AAPL.

  1. samrhall

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Untie us from AT&T

    I'm a long time BellSouth Mobility/Cingular/AT&T user. I was originally fine with AT&T as the sole carrier, mainly because I felt the 3G network would come along soon enough.

    That said, since AT&T purchased BellSouth/Cingular, the level of customer service has plummeted. The day Apple opens the iPhone up to other carriers is the day I leave the only cell carrier I've used.

  1. ViktorCode

    Joined: Dec 1969


    top feature missed

    Well, those are features requested by the current users of iPhone, right? Do you know what feature would make it to the top place if you ask people who doesn't have iPhone? Carrier unlocked out of the box. The lack of this option is the biggest roadblock on the way to mass market adoption.

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