• Chris Umiastowski Hops Off The BlackBerry Bandwagon

    band∑wag∑on noun, often attributive \ˈband-ˌwa-gən\
    : a popular activity, effort, cause, etc., that attracts growing support

    : a popular party, faction, or cause that attracts growing support óoften used in such phrases as jump on the bandwagon

    : a current or fashionable trend

    loy∑al∑ty noun \ˈlȯi(-ə)l-tē\
    : the quality or state of being loyal
    : a loyal feeling : a feeling of strong support for someone or something

    If youíre a sports fan, you have one team youíll stick by and support no matter what their record is. Iíve been a Dallas Cowboys fan since Tony Dorsettís rookie year. I stuck with them through the 1-15 season and cheered when they reeled off three Super Bowlís in four years. I remember rolling my eyes at the sudden Cowboys fans who decided that was ďtheir teamĒ simply because they were winning. I continue to stick with the Cowboys even with their heartbreaking seasons they currently put me through. And I listen to the sunshine fans during the championship years who bash them today.

    I bring up the sports analogy because whether itís a sports team, the car you drive or the cell phone in your hand, brand loyalty is an important part of peopleís lives and purchasing decision. Which is why I was shocked when I read over Fatherís Day weekend on another BlackBerry website, CrackBerry.com, an article that disturbed me greatly and caused the sports analogy I opened this article with to pop into my head.

    The article was titled ďWhat would it take to get me back to BlackBerry?Ē by Chris Umiastowski and it should make every user of BlackBerry devices very, very angry, because it wasn in essence Chris spitting in the faces of loyal BlackBerry users worldwide. For those of you who missed the article, Chris starts out the article by saying how heís been a BlackBerry user since 2000, he stated he was knowledgeable about iOS and had zero Android knowledge until (wait for it) he recently picked up a Samsung Galaxy S4.

    After giving only passing and faint praise to BlackBerry for having a better device and OS than Android (which they do), he spends the rest of the article singing the praises of his new love, the Android OS. And how heíll never go back to BlackBerry again.

    Really Chris? You write for an organization that has a specific website for Android Devices, why not write your ďOde to AndroidĒ there? Why did you feel the need to come onto CrackBerry, and basically spit in the eye of those who still know what brand loyalty is? You declared that despite previous assertions, you were nothing more than a bandwagon rider with your public abandonment of BlackBerry for Android. Thatís right I said it! Chris Umiastowski is a bandwagon rider! He saw BlackBerry heading for an 8-8 season instead of the playoffs and decided to start cheering for a team heíd never supported before that day.

    Now Iím not trying to start an inter-blog war here. Please understand that. (Full disclosure: Iíve been a registered member at CrackBerry.com since around 2007 when I purchased my first BlackBerry, a used 8100 Pearl.) Iíve actually sat on this article for two weeks to make sure that my feelings on this topic are still as strong as when I first read Umiastowski piece. I say that so you the reader know this wasnít a knee jerk reaction on my part. And I mean that. After all both CrackBerry.com and our beloved site here were created ostensibly, to bring together into a community, people who continue to use and share a love for BlackBerry smart phones.

    Have I used other devices before? Yes and Iíve admitted as much here. But I came back to BlackBerry. I used an iPhone 3GS for 3 years but I dumped it for a Torch 9800, then a Curve 9300 before I bought my current Z10. Iíve always tried to make BlackBerry my first choice, and I always will. And even if that were to change (which it wonít) thereís no way Iíd ever, come onto the pages of BlackBerryOS.com and declare what you did over there.

    The editorial staffers here, as well as contributors like myself are all BlackBerry users because we believe in the product. Do some of us test or carry other phones with other operating systems? Of course we do. We have to carry the phones our day jobs require us to carry. But at the end of the day when weíre scanning the news, checking email or sending IMís to our friends, itís done on a BlackBerry device.

    While Android users who read that article two weeks ago probably cheered Chrisís decision, Iíd caution you, heís switched loyalties before, heíll do it again. Itís what bandwagon riderís do. Today heíll be singing the praises of Android, tomorrow it would be a Windows Phone and on and on and on.

    BlackBerry isnít perfect and it certainly isnít for everyone. But those of us that use it swear by it, faults, app gap and all. Weíre willing to be patient and put up with having to find a substitute for a popular app or doing without that app at all for a time because, like with our favorite sports team, just because we might be down now, doesnít mean weíre not going to be the champions again soon.

    Then what will those who, like Chris U, abandoned team BlackBerry have to say?

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