Battle of the smartphones: RIM BlackBerry Bold vs. Apple iPhone 3G

Should you buy an iPhone 3G, or is RIM's top-of-the-line Blackberry Bold the better fit for you?

RIM's BlackBerry Bold is an email-centric smartphone that boasts plenty of multimedia features

RIM's BlackBerry Bold is an email-centric smartphone that boasts plenty of multimedia features

E-mail

This isn't really a contest. BlackBerry's heart and soul is e-mail. As anyone who has ever owned a BlackBerry will tell you, e-mail is fast, efficient and effective. For corporate users, there is simply no other choice. The BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES) allows over-the-air handset application pushing, and integrated e-mail, calendar and contact pushing. E-mail filters, remote searching and security are also features of the BlackBerry Bold that the iPhone can't match. E-mail on the iPhone 3G isn't bad, but it doesn't appeal to corporate users and could certainly use some improvement.

You can't apply filters or out of office messages, there is no way to search e-mails, or mark multiple e-mails as read or unread, and attachments can't be saved on the phone. Thankfully, some of these issues may be corrected in the iPhone's 3.0 software update, due for release in June.

Winner: BlackBerry Bold

Applications

Apple's App Store has had quite a head start in this battle and remains the benchmark. It offers far more applications than BlackBerry App World, which isn't even available in Australia yet. RIM has made no announcements regarding a timeframe for an Australian launch; currently, BlackBerry App World is available to users in the US, UK and Canada, with more country launches to follow.

Winner: iPhone 3G

Battery life

Although both the iPhone 3G and the BlackBerry Bold have been criticised for poor battery life, the Bold is slightly better in this regard. Battery life is one of the iPhone 3G's biggest weaknesses — with push settings turned on and set to fetch at particular time intervals, you'll be lucky to last a day without recharging. The BlackBerry Bold definitely doesn't have the greatest battery life compared to other smartphones, but it does trump the iPhone.

Winner: BlackBerry Bold

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Ross Catanzariti

Ross Catanzariti

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