There is a well-kept secret to which few people are privy. Being an enterprising journalist, I dug deep and called all my sources. Right on deadline, I was able to beat the odds and piece everything together.
It certainly is a shocker: The BlackBerry Storm 9530 for Verizon Wireless has launched. Yes, I have an extraordinary ability to ferret out the tough-to-find stories.
This No Jitter piece predicts that the Storm will be a winner. The writer, who provides a chart comparing the device to the iPhone in 11 categories, clearly is among the converted. He points out that e-mail is the biggest deal for the enterprise, and that Storm "has it all over" the iPhone. It also tops the Apple device on battery life, business application support and management and security features. So at least one person who has tried the device thinks it beats the iPhone in just about every category important to businesses. It also will stop employees from asking for an iPhone, he says-though those requests may be replaced with requests for Storms.
The sides -- Apple vs . Research in Motion -- clearly have been chosen. In what this CRN piece probably correctly calls a preemptive strike, Apple moved up the iPhone 2.2 upgrade. The upgrade, released during the lull before the Storm, is intended to reduce call set-up failures and dropped calls, to extend battery life, reduce iTunes backup time, make e-mail more reliable, speed third-party application installation and reduce third-party bugs. The new version also upgrades Safari, improves performances and stability, and offers a search-friendly user interface.
There will be a spate of reviews and various catch-all type reporting for the next few days. Here is a video on the Storm and a compilation of reviews of the device. PC Magazine answers 20 questions about it. The overall categories are pricing, phone functions, media, physical aspects, OS, browser and GPS capabilities.
Another interesting global view is offered by Al Sacco, who goes to war with himself over whether the iPhone 3G or the Storm is the better bet. He wrote two stories, one providing eight reasons to pick the Storm, the other eight for the iPhone. The reasons to go with the Storm are inclusion of stereo Bluetooth; a removable battery; expandable memory; digital camera/video recording; ability to use the device as a modem; the inclusion of tactile feedback on touch screen; copy-and-paste capabilities, and superior multitasking. The story links to the item that makes the case for the iPhone.
Many industry insiders actually think that the BlackBerry Bold is a better business device than the Storm. Whether the duo enables RIM to keep its business market dominance remains to be seen, of course. The bottom line, however, is that the explosion of cool new devices shows no sign of slowing.