Quite regularly, I'm asked a question considered by many in this world to be relatively straightforward: "what cell phone do you use?" Despite the simplicity of the statement, responding is hard. This week, I carried the Bold and iPhone. Last week, I carried the Bold and Hero. The week before that, I carried the Bold and Storm2. In early October, I carried the Bold and Tour. You get the idea. It changes on a regular basis (and when I say "regular," I'm referring to a weekly basis).
Sure, I'm a BlackBerry addict through and through (and as such, my first choice will always be a BlackBerry), but there are a bevy of devices that I sport, or have used on a regular basis at some point in my wireless career. It's worth noting that this is my list, so naturally, it's biased and based on what I carry (or have carried) on a regular basis.
Coming soon: Aaron's Top Five Phones for the Holiday 2009 season
1. BlackBerry Bold 9700 - AT&T ($199.99 after $100 mail-in rebate) and T-Mobile ($199 on Even More plan)
Prior to the Bold 9700, everything I liked about BlackBerry devices was scattered across various units. I preferred the battery life from the Curve 8900, keyboard from the Bold 9000, the trackpad from the Curve 8520, and general appearance of the Tour 9630. The Bold 9700, available as of last week on T-Mobile and yesterday on AT&T, takes all of the features above and places them into the perfect BlackBerry form factor. Gorgeous screen, OS 5.0, Wi-Fi, 3.2-megapixel camera, roomy keyboard, trackpad in place of the trackball, and absolutely incredible battery life all characterize the Bold 9700. With so many great features, I'm not sure how RIM will one-up this device when the time comes (unless the revision has a better web browser).
2. Apple iPhone 3GS - AT&T (Starting at $199.99)
This phone will always be near the top of my list. Hands down, the experience is always a good one. With anything popular comes a contingent of people that hate it, and the iPhone has both. The good camera (3.2-megapixels), large screen, absolutely phenomenal web browser, and an App Store that's bursting at the gills make it a near-perfect device for consumers and various business types. Combine with iPod integration, and it's a joy to use. It's the one device that literally makes your life easier in almost every way.
3. Palm Pre - Sprint ($149.99 after $100 mail-in rebate)
Though it's not my favorite in regards to build quality (not a huge fan of the plastic body), webOS has an incredible amount of potential. The key of 2009 is social media and networking, and Synergy does a fantastic job when it comes to integration of both. Battery life was a little shaky at launch earlier in the year, and Palm's App Catalog isn't nearly as expanded as its competitors, but the improvements make it a worthwhile device.
4. Motorola Droid - Verizon Wireless ($199.99 after $100 mail-in rebate)
Rocking Android v2.0, a physical QWERTY keyboard, gorgeous 3.7-inch screen, good web browser, and a 5.0-megapixel camera, the Droid is Verizon's answer to the Apple iPhone. Backed by a huge advertising campaign (part of which has gotten Verizon into some legal hot water), the Droid is the flagship of the Android line (the Droid Eris/Hero isn't too far behind, in my book). The battery life is less than desirable, and the design is a love or hate thing. Still, you can't deny that the device is powerful and worthy to be in the belt during those long airport visits at Christmastime.
5. BlackBerry Storm2 - Verizon Wireless ($179.99 after $100 mail-in rebate)
Considering the level to which I prefer RIM, admitting that I strongly disliked the original Storm is serious. It was a two part issue for me - part of the problem centered around poor OS builds (which, in fairness, have been rectified since the launch of OS 184.108.40.2068 for the unit), and the other part centered around build quality issues. Thanks to electronic actuators in place of a physical button underneath the screen, gesture input is significantly improved, and the screen feels like it can withstand the elements a bit better than the original.
Close, but no cigar: