BlackBerry Storm VS iPhone 3G: Will RIM’s First Touch Screen BlackBerry be an iPhone Killer?


Recently I had published a side-by-side comparison of the iPhone 3G and T-Mobile G1 which evoked an interesting debate.

Here comes another side-by-side comparison of Apple’s iPhone 3G with RIM’s BlackBerry Storm, which is considered as another iPhone Killer.

BlackBerry Storm is expected to be released some time in November exclusively by Verizon in the US and Vodafone in UK.




Hardware Spec

  • Dimension:
    • Storm = 4.4  x 2.4 x 0.6 inches
    • iPhone 3G = 5.5 x 2.4 x 0.48 inches
  • Weight:
    • Storm = 155g
    • iPhone = 133g
  • Screen Size:
    • Storm = 3.2 inches
    • iPhone = 3.5 inches
  • Camera:
    • Storm = 3.2M pixel
    • iPhone = 2M pixel
  • Memory:
    • Storm = 1GB on board + 16GB expandable with MicroSD
    • iPhone = 8GB / 16GB (No expansion)
  • Battery:
    • Storm = 5.5hrs talk time / 360 hrs standby
    • iPhone = 5hrs talk time / 300 hrs standby

Unlike T-Mobile G1 that we have reviewed earlier, BlackBerry Storm "steals" the design and looks much like the iPhone 3G. However, it does not look as sleek as iPhone 3G. It’s a little bit thicker (0.14inches more) and heavier (22g more) than iPhone 3G. And, surprisingly, BlackBerry Storm does not come with Wi-Fi support or they probably consider Verizon’s 3G network is good enough.

BlackBerry Storm’s screen is also a little bit smaller (3.2 inch) as compared to iPhone 3G (3.5 inch), however it sports a slightly higher resolution (460×360 pixels) than iPhone 3G (460×360 pixels).

Winner: iPhone 3G

Input Method

With the success of iPhone’s multi-touch interface, touch is now the standard for any new smartphone. Like iPhone, Storm does not have physical slide-out keyboard and uses the screen as input, in fact its RIM’s first smartphone to feature a touch screen. However, RIM highlights that the touch technology developed on Storm is somewhat different to other touch screen smartphone available. RIM refers its touch technology as "Clickable Screen". That means, when users press key on screen, they can actually feel the key pressed and release, just like you press the mouse button. They call it a game changing touch technology that makes on-screen keyboard more appealing.

Also, like T-Mobile G1, it will have built-in cut and paste capability across applications a feature missing from iPhone 3G.

Winner:Its difficult to call a winner on this one, until we get feedback from users on RIM’s touch technology. We love iPhone 3G’s revolutionary multi-touch interface.

Multimedia

Multimedia support is not the strong area of RIM smartphones, as they predominantly targets business users. Storm is developed with multiple support in mind to lure more casual users. Standard feature like music and video playback is included. A wide range of audio format (including MP3, AAC, WMA, etc) and video format (including MPEG4, WMV, etc). Storm also allows you to sync iTunes music files via BlackBerry Media Sync and has its own media software to manage your music.

iPhone 3G is the best iPod Apple has ever created. The music and video playback experience is awesome. And, Apple continues to update features like Genius Playlist into iPhone makes iPhone’s multimedia support nearly unbeatable. With its seamless integration with iTunes Store, you can download songs wirelessly or sync it between desktop using iTunes. iPhone 3G also supports a wide range of music formats but only plays Quick Time video.

Winner: iPhone 3G

Camera & Video Recording

Apple did not upgrade the camera in iPhone 3G, its still a basic 2 megapixel camera while Storm comes with 3.2 megapixel camera and includes video recording capability. Storm also includes a flash and auto focus for its camera.

Winner: BlackBerry Storm

Modem Capability

iPhone 3G does not support tethering and Apple tends to ban any applications in App Store that adds this capability. The only option you have is to jailbreak the iPhone and use jailbreak apps such as PDANet, iPhoneModem etc. BlackBerry Storm, on the other hands, comes with tethering built-in.

Winner: BlackBerry Storm

Enterprise Feature

Apple has made quite a few strides to take market share from RIM in the enterprise area. iPhone 3G, with built-in support for Microsoft’s ActiveSync protocol, lets enterprise users to access Microsoft Exchange’s services.  Also, it takes a great step forwards to support Cisco IPsec VPN, which is a standard in enterprise wireless security. Further, it incorporates a feature to let administrator to wipe data remotely, in case the iPhone is lost or stolen.

RIM is always the leader in enterprise wireless devices. Storm, by no means, continues to lead in this area. The enterprise support is outstanding that different security policies can be defined, such that administrator may enable or shutdown specific bluetooth profiles; and even, to disable its digital camera access.

Winner: BlackBerry Storm

To sum up, BlackBerry strikes a balance between business and causal use. It’s, by far, the sleekest BlackBerry; which should help RIM lure causal customers.

Is it another iPhone killer? Its difficult to conclude. iPhone 3G and BlackBerry both come with some unique features that neither have and they are positioned differently in the market.

However, I still fail to understand the omission of Wi-Fi in BlackBerry Storm, its true that BlackBerry is targeted at the business users who use it primarily for email, but still it seems like a major disadvantage over iPhone 3G.

As a consumer device, iPhone will definitely win thanks to the iPod application, its Safari browser which is easily the most advanced web browser on a portable device which makes browsing the internet on the iPhone a treat and overall for its cool factor. But if you turn to some business-savvy users and enterprise, BlackBerry is still the de-facto choice.

RIM has also not disclosed the pricing or the official shipping date.

You can checkout the demo video of BlackBerry Storm to get an overview:



BlackBerry Storm, T-Mobile G1 and soon to be released Nokia’s XpressMusic phone (Nokia’s first touch screen phone) might or might not end up being iPhone killers but they are healthy competition to Apple’s iPhone 3G that will ensure that Apple constantly innovates which in the end is beneficial for consumers like us.

Let us know which one is a winner from your point of view and why?




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  • TJ

    First off, the "clickable-touch" tech is HARDLY new. It's a fancy name for haptic feedback, which is total bull. It feels like you have a small seizure every time you touch the damn thing.

    The camera in the iphone may have less pixels, but the image sensor is of a higher quality, and has an easier method of zooming in on specific areas. Granted, autofocus would be nice, but since the Storm's is digital, that means no bueno quality. Both phones have physically locked lenses due to the small nature, and therefore an iphone could have autofocus as well.

    Tethering? ON A SITE CALLED IPHONEHACKS?! You're seriously complaining?! Besides, it isn't a problem with Apple, it's a problem with AT&T. They just want to charge more money for you to tether. You CAN tether, it's just an extra fifty bucks a month. Or you can jailbreak and do it for free.

    The enterprise features are great and all, but if a business is giving out iphones it CLEARLY doesn't care about controlling digital camera use, or bluetooth use. Not that those things are particularly useful anyways, since I can't think of any situations in which control of that would be necessary. AND STILL, IT'S A SOFTWARE ISSUE. And since Apple is the only phone manufacturer that CONSTANTLY updates its firmware, I fail to see the problem.

  • KingRichard

    C'mon people… Nothing new on all this gadget. However each have its own advantage and disadvantage and its win here due to this is an iphone blogs. And surely Storm will win on the BB blogs.

    I'm not sure why no one compare Nokia HH to iPhone because surely iPhone is behind its technologies by far.

    Sooo… just my 2cents

  • thedevilsjester

    Yeah I agree that the phone comparisons are not really useful, since this is an iPhone specific site, any article will always have a biased towards the iPhone.

    You fail to mention things like CPU and speed, RAM, and how powerful the graphics chip is. All these matter in a multimedia smart phone. You cannot really do a valid comparison based on surface facts.

    Also there will be no iPhone killer. There may be phones that are equal or better than the current model, but Apple will simply respond with a new model that continues the innovation that they are know for, and companies will continue to copy that.

    Sure a new fancy phone, like the BB and G1 might take the spot light for a little while, but that doesnt make them an iPhone killer.

    As for the video…that video was horrible. I was actually a bit interested in the BB at first (probably not enough to buy it), but that video was a major turn off.

  • No matter how hard they try they are not going to beat the iPhone, because the minute other companies make something that is better than the original iPhone technically, they always fall short somehow and plus Apple comes out with an upgrade that kills the competition. Check some more iPhone comparisons at http://web.illish.us

  • mish

    seriously, the iphone is great and all, i even have one myself, but this device has so many flaws that i cant wait to get rid of it, no video recording?no mms? no copy and paste? no qwerty? come on all these features are so basic that 4-5 year old phones have them maybe even older, so how could you compare the g1 or storm to a phone which lacks so much and still declare it a winner?

  • rpalermo

    Love or hate the Apple, you can at least give them credit for their products stimulating innovation in the markets they participate in. Do you really think we would be seeing a product like the Storm if the iPhone wasn't being a trailblazer? Yes, iPhone has both strengths and weaknesses, and the basis of new product development is for the competition to try to emulate the strengths and improve on weaknesses. Any phone that tries to compete for iPhones market share can be spun to be a superior phone. It is all a big marketing game. For me, I like the iPhone because it was developed by an innovator, not an imitator. I know I can look forward to many more cool things down that road while the other companies are playing catch up.

  • Scott C

    I find the new BB insteresting. Being relatively new to the iphone I notice who has iphones and who has BBs.
    iphones seem to attract people who want to have fun with their digital life where BB are for the people who feel compelled to stay in contact with their job 24×7.
    there are over 50 iphoners where I work and less than 10 BB (outside of management) Its interesting to see the information exchange with the iphoners and the lack there of between the BB'ers.
    I beleive the iphone will continue to dominate because of the overall experience, availability of apps, itunes, overall experience. BB will continue to survive because the suit that is compelled to check their email every 30 seconds in meetings will want the ability to reassure their contribution to their society while the rest of us have fun.
    As far as lack of functionality of the iphone, what phone has really challenged iphones market share. When there is a competitor I am sure apple will address some of the short comings. How else are they gonna get all of us to buy new iphones?
    When BB touts their phone in Steve Jobs face, his ego will be poked at and he will react.

  • KingRichard

    People.. if you examine outside the state then you wont see iphone a break through device. It only sold like peanuts in the states because its the most advance there. So again nothing to bash on iPhone but its glory only hit home. For the rest of the world iPhone is just another iPod with a phone feature. This is my opinions…

  • sebastian

    um…you all need to calm down… It's a phone… I just wanted to point out that there is no diference in the resolution comparison. And I was wondering what was meant to be written

  • sebastian

    um…you all need to calm down… It's a phone… I just wanted to point out that there is no diference in the resolution comparison. And I was wondering what was meant to be written

  • A Black Dude

    the original iphone's success was purely based of off foreign sales…people buying it on ebay or the like, and then unlocking the phone. only a small percent of americans had it because of the hefty price tag. The only reason the 3g is selling is because of the marketing. americans cant resist buying what they think is a "deal" and by advertising it as half off so they gobbled it up.

  • Dev

    IPHONE IS STILL BETTER GO TO CNET

  • Anonymous

    I used the blackberry thunder (verizon storm edition) recently for work and got to play around with it for several days. I can say this much: the touch screen interface is VERY frustrating to use, especially when browsing the web or doing detail tasks.

    The cool feature that it does have is the ability to edit word, excel, and powerpoint documents on the phone. One can even shoot video.

    The landscape mode is well implemented, although the phone's ability to switch between landscape and portrait mode feels frustrating. The Storm often gets 'stuck' in one mode or another.

    Touch screen 'tap & click' feels more like a gimmick than a feature. clicking on the screen often repositions the cursor and forces you to click on something you don't want. That paired with the frustratingly unintuitive UI, makes a deadly combination that will leave a user cursing.

  • me gusta

    i like it…
    its very informative
    thank you
    fuk yo'll haters

  • Josh H

    Well, besides the fact that you have a version that is beta (prior to release) & think that everything would work smoothly is just ignorant. You complain about using a phone that isn't even out yet because it is glitchy. Why do you think that it isn't out yet??? Because they want to make everybody anticipate it longer first? Damn, some people do not think before voicing they're illogical opinions.

  • Steve

    Holding opinion till launch. Then we'll compare, how about that?

  • DM

    Oh dear, some real Apple geeks here.

    Haptic Feedback, ummm do your research son.

    Bluetooth only being a software difference makes it even worse. There is no reason for is not to be better than it is!

  • Adam

    The Blackberry Storm destroys eeryphone out today, its amazing and it fucking owns in every single possble way, Iphone with its shitty camera and cheap sensor, Storm is unbleivably better.

  • stormed assasin

    can you get xm satellite radio on the iphone, can you get pdfs, spreadsheets, power point slide shows and word documents on the iphone, can you get facebook on the iphone. i rest my case.

  • Other than xm satellite radio, its a yes for others.

  • Hybrid00923

    to stormed assasin :

    i do agree on all that and to add to…is the Blackberry messenger..beat that iphone..! Amen bro!

  • Zach

    TJ,

    You obviously haven't used a Storm, or you wouldn't have made the novice mistake of saying "it's a fancy name for haptic feedback, which is total bull. It feels like you have a small seizure every time you touch the damn thing." The screen features a button underneath it, and has nothing to do with small vibrations, etc. The button IS revolutionary, and does in fact offer an incredible more expandable interface than simply multi-touch (which, by the way, the Storm does have).

    As for the camera, only the new iPhone's camera is ALMOST as good. With the Storm, you simply slide your finger across the screen to zoom, no inconvenient pinching gestures (it's difficult to pinch if you have fingernails at all). Apple's CCD chip is made in CHINA. It's not of "higher quality" by any means, not to mention, the Storm features a lense that focuses (it literally goes in and out inside the phone, which you can see). The focus is fully analogue, NOT digital. Again, use one before you act like you know it.

    Tethering: if it was an at&t problem, then why do all the Windows Mobile and BlackBerry and Palm phones let you tether? You just have to upgrade the plan (I can actually tether without the upgraded plan for some reason). Also, it's an extra $30 for tethering. And jailbroken tethering is against the terms of use when you use at&t service.

    Enterprise is not just a phone-side thing. With an iPhone, you get the regular at&t internet service. With a BlackBerry, you go through BIS (BlackBerry Internet Service). For enterprise, you go through an enterprise server with BlackBerry enterprise software installed on it, which is an amazing technology that simply shoots the iPhone through the heart in terms of email.

    BlackBerry, or RIM, have only constantly "leaked" new updates for the Storm. Now, however, it's stable. Constantly updating firmware is a FLAW not an ADVANTAGE. The only company that makes it an advantage is Sony, since the majority of changes in their constantly changing update repository are added features. FREE updates, I might add. By the way, Sony makes phones.

    Are you still all gung-ho about your precious iPhone? Since this isn't a forum, go ahead anyone who would like to prove me wrong, and email me at iggyluver (at] gmail daht com. Especially you, TJ. For the last time, try using a phone before you decide what it does and does not have. Or, at least do a bit of Googling.

  • Zach

    Be careful not to think that the iPhone is the best. Apple doesn't have the experience or the size to go head to head with a company like BlackBerry or Nokia. Google, yeah the G1 was an experiment. It's cool, but not that powerful. The Storm is not the best BlackBerry, and the iPhone isn't the best in anything except their App Store, but they lack the compatibility that BlackBerry devices have by using Java. You can literally put any mobile phone app on them and play/use it. And Apple just barely came out with video support. Their "new features" are things BlackBerry's already done, and Sony's been doing. Take geotagging for example. Since BB came out with GPS phones, you get geotagging on vid and pics.

    My point here is, the BB nor the iPhone are the best.

  • Zach

    The Storm was just BlackBerry's next step into the PDA world. A touch screen? Palm won that market long ago. Everyone thinks the Storm is the "iPhone rival" just because it's a touch screen. It's so different, hardware-wise. Blackberry created practical business email mobility, not to mention, the Storm is much more durable. It's metal across the whole back! A metal that doesn't scratch, as we all know Apple is notorious for finding cheap metals that scratch worse than limestone.

  • Zach

    Please post useful information, don't simply say something is better, and why is it all in caps?

  • Zach

    The UI is intuitive… Have you honestly owned one? "Thunder" was a rumor name. It was never officially called the "Verizon Thunder". That name was because the policies on developing these devices requires that the production name and the creation names are different. Thunder was just a facade so RIM could keep the name "Storm" instead.

  • Zach

    I have to agree. They posted several key points, although it could have gone with less bias. Not much to ask for there, since this IS an iPhone site, but that makes it not as valid anyways.

  • Zach

    Or even try the devices…

    Or even research the devices…

    Verizon pushed the release. No other BlackBerry has been as glitchy, and it's not like they don't have the experience to make it better. VZW got too anxious for Christmas.

  • Zach

    Well the BT radio is also a problem, they need to be more powerful to support things like a Media Remote and Stereo Audio Transmission without issues. However, it could still have been done even with less audio quality.

    High fives on the haptic feedback response.

  • Zach

    While the Storm is better in almost every way hardware-wise other than weight (I personally like it better than the iPhone in that regard, especially with thickness), the iPhone has the slickest softare, fo sho. But the iPhone does have a lacking camera, that much is certain…

  • Zach

    No kidding, BB msngr is da BEST.

  • jaynbbgrl@roadrunner.com

    well… never having had an iphone, and yes having the storm, and the storm 2, they both suck! The thing freezes up on any screen, and try answering it… funny. You might stop it from ringing, but cant answer. Try hanging up after a call? Nope, cant do that either. So I call the famous verizon to replace my brand new 340.00 phone within my first 30 days, and they send me a bigger piece of crap… "like new" replacement phone. Yay me! wish i wouldve gone iphone/at&t!!!! BLACKBERRY STORM SUCKS!!! And it does take longer to download your apps, there are no games worth playing for it, over all.. it truely sucks. So does the service provider.

  • Charlotte

    i love my iphone, its so easy to use. very fast and efficient.. the battery only runs out if you play a lot of music, ring people and use the internet constantly.. which i do, so i charge it every day or every other day! i love how quickly things can be found and how organised everything can be. Im so glad i got an iphone instead of a blackberry, because they are so confusing and really difficult to use and understand if you've never seen one before. the app store for blackberry's suck and aren't worth looking at.. i think they're just trying to be more like the iphone..