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Bye Bye Cheapos, Hi Smartphones – Blackberry Storm 2, Motorola Milestone, Apple iPhone 3GS

Friday, April 2, 2010

/ by Srikanth Eswaran

Once upon a time touch screen phones were considered luxury. If they had 2MP cameras, they were worshipped, and if they possessed Wi-Fi, it was not meant for the middle class. All that is now passe. With the entry of the BIG 3 super hit phones, the Indian market just heated up to get exciting. So who are these three and what’s on offer? Find out more below.

 

 

Image source: www.gsmarena.com

 

Image sources: www.boygeniusreport.com  , http://img.xataka.com

The last one month has seen some hot launches in the smartphone market from none other than Research in Motion (RIM – Blackberry), Motorola, and Apple. Each has unleashed a turf war with their best selling products – the Storm 2 Blackberry touch, the Milestone, and the 3GS iPhone. A brief comparison of the specs are as below:

 

If we compare the Moto Milestone, and apple iPhone 3gs briefly with Blackberry Storm 2 9520, these are the features available:

 

Features Milestone Storm 2 iPhone 3GS
       
Price 28,500 31,000 35,500
3g Networks 2 1 3
Capacitive touchscreen Yes Yes Yes
Resolution 480x854 !! 360x480 320x480
Sensors Yes No proximity sensor Yes
Internal memory 256MB 2GB !! 256 MB
3g Speed Upto 10.2 Mbps !! 7.2 Mbps 7.2 Mbps
Camera 5 MP !! 3.2 MP 3.2 MP
Video 24 fps 24 fps 30 fps !!
Flash Dual LED !! LED None :-(
Processor 600 Mhz, lesser graphics 528 Mhz 600 Mhz, better graphics !!
GPS with maps Yes Yes Yes
Battery 1400 mAh 1400 mAh 1200 mAh

 

From this comparison you can see that for the price point under question the best value for money phone would  most naturally be the Moto Milestone. However, more of everything does not mean a better phone.

  • For example if you look at the table, graphics is much better in iPhone which means their user interface will needless to say be the best among the three.
  • Also if you look at video recording, the iPhone surpasses its competition by a good 5fps more.
  • So also with the bands supported for 3G. In this department the blackberry is the worst.
  • Again if you see the camera, the Moto beats competition hands down with 5 mega pixels with dual LED flash and the apple is not even worth talking about

So which one must you consider? Well frankly, for me, these are my opinions considering I have or will be using atleast two among the three titans of smartphones, the storm and the 3GS.

 

  • When it comes to price the Milestone from  Motorola kicks everyone else out
  • When it comes to navigation and usability for all people of the house, the apple iPhone wins by a big margin. One should also not forget the 1,50,000 applications that the appStore has for users compared to Google and Blackberry
  • For pure business applications, the Motorola milestone has the potential to keep people happy for a long time, perhaps until Google itself releases its 1GHz Nexus One (which it does not intend to in India)
  • One another important thing is that while Apple iPhone 3GS in India is locked to Airtel or Vodafone, the Motorola Milestone and Blackberry Storm 2 will be available unlocked for any operator in the country which is a huge plus point at that price.
  • With good 3g data services support from BSNL and the impending 3G spectrum auctions, all other private operators will shortly follow with their 3G services, all these phones are set to harness the power of 3G from various operators to provide video calling and other such facilities. These phones support 3G quite well as expected and this is a good feature in all phones in comparison
  • All these phones have 3.5mm standard headset jack making them all multimedia ready by nature of design
  • All these phones are GPS enabled with the Moto supporting free turn by turn navigation which is a big boon to finding your way in a lost place.
  • If you are the person who likes physical qwerty keypad, Moto is for you, if you like both touch and press (surepress) keypad, the storm is for you and if you like the touch only keypad, iPhone is for you. I am used to touch typing, so both Storm and iPhone 3gs appeal to me more than the physical QWERTY of Moto.
  • Google has only 30000 applications, compared to Apple’s 1,50,000 which is a huge marketing plus for Apple. Blackberry apps are not worth mentioning at all frankly

For any comparison there have to be negatives, so here they are:

  • Though the Moto Milestone sports 5MP camera, there is no 30fps video recording which is a shame
  • The RAM in both Moto and Apple is only 256 as compared to 2GB in Blackberry. This is a vast difference
  • None of the handsets support dual camera (front and back facing) which are most necessary for video calls, and this is a shame for the price paid.
  • Limited support for each of these handsets in terms of warranty repairs and the limited reach to the customers is slightly disheartening.
  • Blackberry and Apple have no clear maps usage policy which makes it difficult for a normal user
  • Locking to operator is going to hurt Apple’s fortunes compared to the other two competitors
  • Non removable battery is bad for Apple whereas not for the other two since they also sport more powerful batteries

In SUMMARY, if you love core technology, want huge features for low price, with Google’s famed Android 2.1 OS, look no further than the Motorola Milestone. If you are the business conscious user who have been a fan of RIM and their products and appreciate their push email technology and still need other commonly found features, then the Storm 2 is a refreshing change from RIM with their touch based screen and surepress typing technology. The large memory, and slick business features will appeal the business community for sure. If you want ease of use, large amount of apps to chose from, and don’t mind the extra cost, for what you get in return – the famed apple popularity, at the cost of some missing features, then the iPhone 3GS is for you.

Take your pick, for now mine is the iPhone 3GS since I feel Google has some catching up to do with Apple. As for blackberry, I enjoyed it as long as I had it, and would recommend it even though I don’t own it now.

 

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