I’ll start saying that I actually do not own an iPhone, but I do have an iPod Touch 4th generation, and owned before one of the third generation, so I’ll use my experiences with it for this comparison. I know that might not be a fair comparison, also with the Android, I own a Sony Ericsson Mini Pro, with Android 2.1, not the last version. On the blackberry side (my latest gadget) I’ve a Blackberry Bold III 9780 with Blackberry OS 6.0.
I’ll based my experiences with these equipments as tools for job, and as “playing” devices. ##Using iPhone, Blackberry and Android at work##
If you need your smart phone for your work email, and basically to have your calendar read and write emails on the go, here is what they can offer to you:
iPhone: If you are using MS Exchange or Google Apps, it has a great integration with them both, real push email capabilities, and also the calendar and address book will sync online over the air. The keyboard is something about your personal preferences, I’ve heard people saying that a real keyboard is better than the on-screen iPhone keyboard. Talking about me, I actually write better on the iPhone keyboard than on the blackberry one, in fact, I find it easier to write on the Xperia mini Pro keyboard than on the Blackberry Bold. The only drawback I find on the iPhone is the battery duration, It only lasts a day with heavy use and all time WiFi and 3G on.
Xperia Mini Pro: The Xperia loaded with Android 2.1, could be the best option if talking about Google Apps integration, but actually the iPhone has such a great integration, and the email client on the iPhone is (at least for me) better than the one you get on an Android device, which is great for your computer, but not too good in a phone. I do not like the fact that I need to scroll all the way down to reply or forward a message, on the iPhone or the Blackberry that simple function is easier. With the Android phone you’ll face the same problem of the battery that you will face with the iPhone, the Internet is all filled with blog posts and forum’s threads talking about how to save battery with both Android and iPhone phones. Something that Blackberry seems to have solved. I should add here that my previous Nokia E72 also showed better battery duration than the reported by Androids and iPhones.
Blackberry: Great integration with Exchange or Lotus Notes if you have BES service, if you are planning to use it with your Google Apps account, you have to seriously consider to install BES Express server and the Google Connector to have real synchronization, otherwise, you will see that your read emails on your PC will not show read in your phone, which is really annoying if you get lots of emails in a day. There are also third party BES services providers that works with Google Apps, I’m using one of them and so far so good, but you’ll have to pay something extra over your Blackberry plan.
Your best option
Of course this will be driven by your personal perception, and your personal preferences, and it is a hard decision. In my case I’ve my company email with Google Apps Enterprise, and can see that push capabilities, and sync options works great with my three devices the iPod Touch (while on wifi) the Xperia and the Blackberry works more or less the same, but the battery on the Blackberry lasts almost three days while the Android just 12 hours, and the iPhone seems not to be much better than Android phones when it comes to battery duration. So, you’d better read some reviews, talked to friends with the three devices, and take your choice according to your personal preferences.
Using the iPhone, Android and Blackberry, for fun
Now, if you are planning to use your smart phone for fun, or a mix of fun and work, then you should forget about the Blackberry, and think about the Android and iPhone as your possible choices.
I’ve found almost the same good apps for both iPhone and Android devices, yes iPhone has a lot more, but most of them you will rarely need, or even know about them.
I think that maybe because of the time on the market, iPhone apps looks more neat than Android ones, but that will not last for ever, for sure.
I prefer the way Android manages the background apps compared to the iPhone, it seems to me that the Linux Kernel makes a better job working with memory and CPU resources than iOS, but that’s me.
I’m not going to tell you which one is better than the other, as for me there is no better one, as I told you I have the iPod Touch, the Xperia mini pro, and the BB Bold 9780, and love the three of them, and use them for different things, what I actually do is:
- I have email on the three of them as that is my most important need, and use any of them to manage my email and calendar.
- I use the iPod for my pictures and music and my Podcasts.
- I use the Android for my social networks, Twitter, my RSS feeds, foursquare.
- I use the Blackberry mostly only for email, I love how it manage the battery juice, even with Wifi and 3G on all day.
If you need any help to decide which one you should choose, I can try to help you, let me know in the comments sections what are your needs and I’ll try to help you the best I can.
This is just my personal opinion, it may differ with yours, and that is good :).