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  1.    #1  
    I have been researching the Treo 650 vs. the Blackberry 7290/7250 on TreoCentral and BlackBerryForums, as I'm currently in the market for a hybrid device. Researching this stuff takes a long time and I really appreciate any comments from the group. Apologies for the long post.

    I travel periodically for my job (domestically) and work around the clock. I travel sporadically internationally, mainly for an occasional vacation to Europe or the Caribbean/Mexico. My family also travels to Nantucket for a week or two every summer. Because of work demands, I need to have access back to the office while traveling.

    I strongly prefer to travel light both around town (I live and work in NYC) as well as when on the road. I have grown tired of carrying so many gadgets (cell phone, Blackberry 957, camera, Palm Vx, etc.). I have been using the desktop redirector at work and our small business does not have BES.

    Because it integrates so many features (email, PIM, MP3, speakerphone, camera, attachment modification, ability to use 3rd party apps like AvantGo and Vindigo, HTML email), a Treo 650 is appealing. However, I have a number of questions for the group below, not only to help pick the service provider but also to check on the Treo vs. the Blackberry. I do like the fully QWERTY keyboard of both.

    1. Does the new Flamingo Bluetooth headset work with the Treo 650? I've read elsewhere that's the best headset on the market because it works with glasses and because it is so light.

    2. For people in NYC, how does Cingular/ATT service compare vs. Verizon (I'm already ruling out T Mobile because they seem to have the worst network)? How does Cingular look in other areas across the country and Nantucket? People in NYC seem to routinely say Verizon has the best network (I know the Verizon 650 phone is not out yet but is coming soon), but I wonder if that is changing since the Cingular-AT&T merger. I know GSM can be used overseas (especially with an unlocked phone to be cheaper), but if Cingular/ATT is still inferior then it's not worth the tradeoff for where I spend 99% of my time.

    3. Can Cingular/ATT service be used as a modem with the Treo? I think you can do that with the Blackberry 7290, which is a major plus. Will the Verizon Treo 650 allow for high-speed EV-DO access when it comes out?

    4. How often does Treo 650 crash? I worry about bugginess/uptime. My Blackberry has been rock solid for 5 years now.

    5. How well does the Treo work with Bluetooth headsets? I have seen mixed thoughts on this from the group.

    6. Can you talk on the phone and write emails at the same time with the Treo 650?

    7. How does the battery life of the Treo 650 compare to the Blackberry 7250/7290?

    8. Is the Treo 650 as good as the Blackberry desktop redirector for pushing email? What is Chattermail and does that replicate the same thing?

    9. People seem to make a big deal about the Blackberry and Treo not having WiFi access. What is the benefit of WiFi? Is this something I should be worried about for the future.

    10. For an unlocked Treo, can you buy a global SIM card to allow for receiving emails as well as voice? From where? Which countries? Cost?

    11. How is Cingular's service in Nantucket? Voice? Data?

    Thank you so much for any insights/data/opinions you might have related to these questions.
  2. #2  
    Here is my take:

    1. Yes (but the Sony Ericsson 660 is the best Bluetooth headset)

    2a. Sprint is the best in NYC, Verizon second. Cingular/ATT are bad. CDMA networks perform much better in densely populated areas like NYC. I would go Sprint, as data rates are way cheaper.

    2b. Generally, across the country, Sprint is good; Cingular varies. Can't comment much on Nantucket-haven't been there in a while.

    If you spend most of your time in the USA, don't worry about GSM. You can get yourself a decent unlocked GSM phone for $50 and then just use that with a prepaid service.

    3a. Yes, but Sprint's data rates are a lot better for tethering.

    3b. No, a Verizon Treo 650 will not do EV-DO

    4. The Treo will reset more than the Blackberry. It varies...sometimes frequently, sometimes rarely. NOTE: I have never lost any data due to a reset, so it's more of an annoyance.

    5. Works fine with a decent BT headset like the SE 660.

    6. Yes, but you cannot send or receive email until you are off the phone.

    7. I think the Blackberry is tiny bit longer, but you can swap another in battery, which beats the Blackberry.

    8a. For redirection, the Treo works fine. Chattermail is a different beast and would take longer to explain.

    9. Wi-fi is not a big deal for your scenario...don't worry about it.

    10. Depends on the country, but generally it's voice only. You will need to find out more details for you target countries.

    11. Again, can't tell you...have not been there. Check to see how Sprint is.

    That's my .02.
  3. #3  
    First of all, I recommend you search about these questions. There are a ton of threads on this. I will give you what I know/have read here at TC.

    Quote Originally Posted by eliasek
    1. Does the new Flamingo Bluetooth headset work with the Treo 650? I've read elsewhere that's the best headset on the market because it works with glasses and because it is so light.
    DK, search for the flamingo thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by eliasek
    2. For people in NYC, how does Cingular/ATT service compare vs. Verizon (I'm already ruling out T Mobile because they seem to have the worst network)? How does Cingular look in other areas across the country and Nantucket? People in NYC seem to routinely say Verizon has the best network (I know the Verizon 650 phone is not out yet but is coming soon), but I wonder if that is changing since the Cingular-AT&T merger. I know GSM can be used overseas (especially with an unlocked phone to be cheaper), but if Cingular/ATT is still inferior then it's not worth the tradeoff for where I spend 99% of my time.
    If you travel and have to have access to the phone, then I wouldnt recommend Verizon...its CDMA and you'll have more travelling success with a GSM phone.

    Quote Originally Posted by eliasek
    3. Can Cingular/ATT service be used as a modem with the Treo? I think you can do that with the Blackberry 7290, which is a major plus. Will the Verizon Treo 650 allow for high-speed EV-DO access when it comes out?
    Search for a program called PDANet. It allows you to connect your treo to your laptop/pc via the sync cable.

    Quote Originally Posted by eliasek
    4. How often does Treo 650 crash? I worry about bugginess/uptime. My Blackberry has been rock solid for 5 years now.
    Varies on what you put on it. If you dont read through the posts here at TC and you load a bunch of third party programs that havent been tested, then you will have lots of resets. If you load a new program one at a time and back up to an sd card with a good backup program...you will be much better off.

    Quote Originally Posted by eliasek
    5. How well does the Treo work with Bluetooth headsets? I have seen mixed thoughts on this from the group.
    Not good. You can get basic usuability (i.e. you can talk and hear conversations) but you won't be able to initiate calls and end calls with most headsets. Search the threads on this.

    Quote Originally Posted by eliasek
    6. Can you talk on the phone and write emails at the same time with the Treo 650?
    Yeah Im pretty sure you can. I usually am talking and checking my schedule at the same time. You won't be able to talk and send email at the same time however.

    Quote Originally Posted by eliasek
    7. How does the battery life of the Treo 650 compare to the Blackberry 7250/7290?
    DK, but the battery life on the 650 is pretty good. Plus you have the option of a 2nd battery.

    Quote Originally Posted by eliasek
    8. Is the Treo 650 as good as the Blackberry desktop redirector for pushing email? What is Chattermail and does that replicate the same thing?
    Versamail (the app that comes stock on the 650) isnt very good and people have mixed results. Chatteremail is awesome. If you have IMAP email and you want the instant notification of new emails and you want it to run in the background...then demo www.chatteremail.com You won't regret it.

    Quote Originally Posted by eliasek
    9. People seem to make a big deal about the Blackberry and Treo not having WiFi access. What is the benefit of WiFi? Is this something I should be worried about for the future.
    Wifi is much faster than surfing on your phone's data connection. Wifi allows you internet access while you are out of your coverage area (i.e. if you cant make a call, you wont be able to get your email/surf the web). Having wifi allows you to overcome this. I want that feature, so I am holding out for the next treo (I also want better bt like ver. 1.2)

    Quote Originally Posted by eliasek
    10. For an unlocked Treo, can you buy a global SIM card to allow for receiving emails as well as voice? From where? Which countries? Cost?
    DK, I have read how you can buy or rent a sim card for use in another country (probably pay per minute but at least you get to use your phone).

    Quote Originally Posted by eliasek
    11. How is Cingular's service in Nantucket? Voice? Data?
    DK, seems that cingular has mixed results. From what I have read, cingular does cover more people better than Tmobile, but that my opinion.
  4. #4  
    Quote Originally Posted by t2gungho
    First of all, I recommend you search about these questions. There are a ton of threads on this. I will give you what I know/have read here at TC.
    You realize that doing a search on the majority of things he's asking is going to bring up obsolete info %50 of the time... The fact is, new firmware have come out, tons of new accessories have come out, new carriars have come out, etc. Weeding through tons of old posts is a waste of time when someone here can answer all the questions pretty quickly.

    don't forget that most threads are inundated with whiners about completely irrelevant details. These posts are also good because they consolidate many relevant questions.

    -BT
  5. #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by BIGtrouble77
    You realize that doing a search on the majority of things he's asking is going to bring up obsolete info %50 of the time... The fact is, new firmware have come out, tons of new accessories have come out, new carriars have come out, etc. Weeding through tons of old posts is a waste of time when someone here can answer all the questions pretty quickly.
    Even if searching is difficult, I still think its important that people 'try' to find their own answers to questions. Even at your estimates, he would find his answers 50% of the time.

    Quote Originally Posted by BIGtrouble77
    don't forget that most threads are inundated with whiners about completely irrelevant details. These posts are also good because they consolidate many relevant questions.
    I totally agree and that is why I took the time to answer the questions.
  6. #6  
    My understanding is that the Blackberry 957 has AMAZING battery life. My Treo 650 only gets about 36 hours of uptime. How about the 72xx blackberry's?
  7.    #7  
    Thanks all for your helpful comments. I have posted something similar in BlackberryForums to get the thoughts of the "other side." See link below.

    http://www.blackberryforums.com/show...53168&posted=1

    So the bottom line is the Treo can't be used as a modem for the laptop? That does seem like a major advantage of the BB, if one takes a laptop on extended trips to places...
  8. #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by eliasek
    Thanks all for your helpful comments. I have posted something similar in BlackberryForums to get the thoughts of the "other side." See link below.

    http://www.blackberryforums.com/show...53168&posted=1

    So the bottom line is the Treo can't be used as a modem for the laptop? That does seem like a major advantage of the BB, if one takes a laptop on extended trips to places...
    Two things... The treo can be used as a modem, but not right out of the box. You have to either install the DUN hack or buy a program like PDAnet for $35. The DUN hack works well, but requires a device reset after using or you'll have instability. PDAnet works perfectly, as a result many people here use it.

    I also agree that wifi isn't all that important if you have a data plan. I think the biggest advantage of wifi is if you use VOIP with skype.

    -BT
  9. #9  
    Most of these questions have been answered, but here's a few more bits of opinion... Cingular in NYC is pretty decent. I used to be t-mo which was sad and I switched to cingular to get the cheap treo650 as well as take advantage of edge, but I figured that the service would be about the same - fortunately I was wrong.. covereage in nyc is pretty good, at least in places I've been. EDGE can also be quite fast for basic internet needs - even ssh'ing to my servers is reasonable.

    Chattermail is pretty amazing too, I definitely recomment checking out the website www.chatteremail.com and poking around the forums there and what not. It's definitely worth it for the treo's.

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