Paul's Blackberry pages
This all started out as a simple review of my Nextel 7510, written for
my co-workers. It's kind
of gotten out of hand since then.
I've now broken the pages up by content, added a small blog, and
setup a page navigation bar at the top of each page. I hope you like
When I look at a web page, it's always nice to see the date/time and
10/22/04 Initial posting.
10/27/04 Typos corrected, also added more on messaging, reorg and
10/28/04 Added note about TCP/IP, laptop charge.
10/29/04 Added IM, RSS
11/01/04 Added SecurID
11/24/04 TaskPro update, ditto PocketMac
12/20/04 OS4 and 7520 teaser
1/6/05 Split into two pages
1/16/05 Great Rewrite - header, page split, weblog
1/21/05 Data page update - the Mybluebery error, data rates posted
Syndicate these pages
I post updates on the
RSS feed, so please subscribe to that if interested. If you've not
got an RSS reader, the
Blog link at the top of each page is an HTML version of the RSS
The 10-second summary
These pages are primarily about the Blackberry 7510 and 7520, on the
Nextel service. There's quite a bit of other information about other
hardware and carriers, but that's the focus. If you don't know what the
RIM Blackberry 75x0 is, here's a picture:
This review was written when the Blackberry OS was version 3.7. Since
the initial posting, 4.0 has been released and I've reworked these
pages accordingly. Having used 4.0, there's no reason to run 3.7 any
As of 10/2004, the new position required that I get a Nextel cell
phone. I convinced
them to get me the Blackberry
7510. My thinking went something like this:
- I have to have a Nextel phone. Moreover, I have to carry
- SDSC will let me pay the delta in cost and get data service.
- If you're a nerd, the Blackberry is cool-looking. Really.
- I've been wanting a smartphone, preferably the Treo 650, to
replace my palm + cell.
- The Blackberry costs 130 extra, which I have to pay. However,
Nextel will credit you $100 for any PDA that works. Most geeks will
have an old Palm or such that qualifies, reducing the cost to $30.
So I decided to see if I can use the 7510 to replace my cell + palm.
These pages are
both a review and a list of recommended programs for those in similar
I want to have just one cell for work and personal use. The idea was
combine gadgets, make traveling easier, and simplify a bit. That turns
out to be difficult.
I have, and have been pretty happy with, T-Mobile. In metro areas
and overseas, tri-band GSM is great. The initial idea was to transfer
the T-mobile phone number to Nextel, and
then buy a second number on the 7510. A lot of phones can do this - use
and handle dual
This allows me to only carry one phone, avoiding the dreaded
'Stormtrooper belt' look. Granted, some people want to look like this,
at least until they try and fly commercial aviation. I do not.
However, the Blackberry is the only cell phone Nextel sells that
cannot handle a second line. I cannot transfer my existing number
without replacing the one I have now. On our group plan, I also cannot
buy additional personal minutes. Basically, Nextel+Blackberry cannot
solve the problem
This is still an open question. For now, we're waiting to see how
usage goes. I suspect that the pool of group minutes will cover my
personal calls, and have offered to
pay if not. We'll see what happens.
Suggested reading order
Good question, that. How about:
- Add-on programs
- I like the Blackberry a lot. The email-anywhere + cell + limited
PDA is pretty compelling. Services such
as Berry 411 and hz.com
are really useful on the road.
- Nextel cell coverage seems acceptable, easily better than
T-Mobile pretty much everywhere. I have complaints, but no cell service
seems much better than any other.
- OS4 fixes many of the shortcomings, and the 7520 looks to fix
most of the hardware issues.
- Note that I've not had a single crash, freeze or malfunction in
the month I've owned it. This
is much more reliable than any Palm I've used, and highly appreciated.
- Annoyance of daily reboots if you run Verichat.
- Extra-cost data service. Expect to pay $120 per year on top
of your cell service. More if you have a carrier like T-Mobile. It can
- Less software available than Palm/Treo, and almost no freeware.
- The better half still thinks that it looks supernerdy, and I
argue. She also thinks that I now work more, which is certainly true.
Being always available can be a problem.
Works very well, not as cool or flexible as a Treo but better email
reliable. Recommended. Make sure and get OS4.