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Need Advice on Blackberry Replacement

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  • Need Advice on Blackberry Replacement

    I am currently using a Blackberry device for e-mail and calendar reference. However, as has been pointed out many times on this forum, it is useless when it comes to managing tasks, especially based on the GTD model.

    What I would really like is a Palm/Phone replacement that offers the same kind of real-time e-mail capabilities of the Blackberry. It needs to sync with Outlook, preferably on the fly, as I send and receive messages. This is the one thing I love about the Blackberry.

    Will the Treo 600 do this? If not, can you recommend another device?

  • #2
    The Treo can do this...

    If you are on an Exchange server with your Outlook and your admin is willing to run software from a company called Good, the Treo can be an Exchange client. There is a hosted Exchange provider here in Albuquerque who has set up a number of Treo 600 users to do this. If you're not on an Exchange server now, there are a number of hosted Exchange providers you can look into. Check Slipstick.com as a starting point to find these services.

    Comment


    • #3
      I Have Found Two Palm <-> Exchange Options So Far

      Thanks, Marc. (By the way, I read your blog daily. Love it.)

      It seems that there are two third-party options: GoodLink from a company called Good Technology and Seven from a company by the same name. Best I can tell, both work with Exchange servers and provide seamless, real-time access to Outlook e-mail. Unlike the Blackberry, GoodLink doesn't require a cradle for any syncing.

      I stumbled across a couple of other articles that might be of interest to lurkers:Based on my cursory review, GoodLink appears to be the best of the two. However, RIM, the makers of Blackberry, have sued GT several times and seem committed to taking them down. I don't know what kind of threat this poses to users, but it may be something to consider.

      SprintPCS, which is my cell phone carrier, has what appears to be their own proprietary system. There is a detailed overview of this system on Sprint's Web site. (Warning: this is a PDF document.) I will be testing this system against my Blackberry this week. I will try to post my thoughts afterward.

      I am hoping that I can have my cake and eat it too. I want the real-time e-mail and calendar functionality of the Blackberry with all the benefits of the more fully-developed Palm platform, including the ability to run Chapura's PocketMirror Professional, so that I can sync all my GTD categories. If I can do all of this on one device, I will be in "tall cotton," as we say here in the south.

      Comment


      • #4
        Need Advice on Blackberry Replacement

        I've recently switched from carrying a Tungsten T3, a cellphone and a Blackberry to one device: the Treo 600. Although I miss the larger screen of the Tungsten T3, the fact I only need one device to do all that stuff won me over.

        We're currently still using Groupwise for e-mail at our office, but we use a program called NotifyLink to allow us to retrieve and read e-mails on our Blackberries and Treo 600s. A couple of us here were early adopters of, first, the Blackberry and, then, the Treo 600. Now, as more folks here have seen us use them, more and more folks are buying them.

        Randy Stokes
        randystokes@cox.net

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        • #5
          Hi Randy,

          What sort of experience have you had with the Treo 600? I've looked at it (the attraction of combining my PDA and phone into one unit is attractive) but the low resolution screen is off-putting as I often use my PDA to read ebooks.

          Does it do all the other Palm functions and let you run other Palm programs?

          Thanks!
          Scot

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          • #6
            Need Advice on Blackberry Replacement

            Scot:

            I made the switch from my Tungsten T3 to the Treo 600, so I know what you mean about the lower resolution screen. It's also smaller on the Treo 600 than on the T3.

            However, I'm happy with the trade. Sure, it would be nice if I had a larger, high resolution screen, but otherwise the Treo 600 does just about everything I could do on the T3 (except voice memos, and rotating the display). Plus, the Treo 600 includes my phone and my e-mails, along with web access (which I sometimes use to read this forum or David's and Jason's weblogs). Cutting down on the number of devices I carry helps, too -- and reduces the "dork factor," to quote David in a different context.

            With a couple of minor exceptions, the Treo runs all the same software as the T3. Can't recall those minor exceptions right now, but the Treo is an OS5 device, so it runs pretty much everything designed for that OS (plus most of the OS5 compatible older software, too, just like the T3). And I read books on the Treo 600, too.

            I'm guessing Palm/Handspring will come out with a Treo that has a larger, higher resolution screen, maybe with a slider like the T3 and the ability to rotate the display, in the not-to-distant future. I just didn't want to wait to combine my devices!

            Regards,

            Randy

            Randy Stokes
            randystokes@cox.net

            Comment


            • #7
              If Palm comes out with a Treo that is something like T3 for PDA and then a phone, I will buy it the same day. But until that as a "heavy PDA user" I have to keep my T3.

              Comment


              • #8
                Treo 600

                I use the Treo and would prefer a higher resolution screen but it gets the job done better than any other all-in-one device. You get used to the screen unless you are really into games. For text, ebooks, etc, it works just fine. I haven't found any programs that I use on a regular basis that don't work on the Treo.

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                • #9
                  Stick with the 'Berry or wait til Exchange Server 2004...

                  I recently got a Blackberry for our CEO and CTO.

                  Salient points of comparison:
                  * The Treo 600 using Goodlink software is _identical_ in functionality to the Blackberry:
                  1. Both require connectivity to an outside device; i.e. if you have an Exchange Server behind a firewall, you'll have to open a secure port to the Internet to let the traffic in/out.
                  2. Both are vertical solutions. Currently, Goodlink only supports a Palm-OS version of the Treo; there are Windows phones due out this summer. The Blackberry is obviously proprietary also.
                  3. Both use and support 3-DES (Triple-DES) encryption.
                  * We actually sent the Treo _back_ because we saw no difference. After talking to Good's tech support, they admitted that the functionality is basically the same.
                  * Research In Motion has been doing this (mobile email) for 10 years, and has 1 million Blackberrys out there. They also provide wireless calendaring. Wireless contact management is due in June, and wireless "tasks" and "notes" are due in the fall.

                  BTW, Exchange $erver 2004 is touted as providing all the "wireless" bells and whistles to connect to Outlook (contacts, calendar, tasks, notes) **with no additional software**, and the information doesn't ever have to leave your enterprise. The downside is that from what I understand, it'll only work in a PocketPC environment...

                  Personally, I'd stick with the 'Berry. Just my $0.02.

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                  • #10
                    But that misses the point. The Blackberry may do everything the Treo 600 does regarding reading/receiving e-mails. But, it isn't a Palm device (nor does it do a very good job regarding managing calendar, to do list, etc.). Further, in my own personal experience, the phone wasn't very good either. The Treo 600 is an excellent Palm device, with a very good phone, as well as a Blackberry-like e-mail device.

                    So, in my own opinion, there really is no comparison between the Blackberry and the Treo 600.

                    Your mileage may vary.

                    Randy Stokes
                    randystokes@cox.net

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The Treo 610 is coming

                      The Palm boards have been buzzing about the release sometime later this Spring or early Summer of the Treo 610 via Verizon. Details are sketchy as of now but the two common "facts" I keep seeing repeated are a higher resolution screen and more memory.

                      I'm waiting. The Blackberry could not meet my task management needs at all. The current Treo with its low res screen is such a step backkwards from the Sony Clie UX50 I'm currently using that I can't go back.

                      I've got my spare fingeres crossed Palm gets the next Treo right(er).

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I would stick with the Blackberry if ...

                        I would stick with the Blackberry if I could just sync the categories. Unfortunately, it doesn't currently offer this capability. I am surprised that a third-party developer like Chapura hasn't provided a solution.

                        Sometimes you wonder if the quest for the perfect PDA is like trying to find the Holy Grail!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by randystokes
                          But that misses the point. The Blackberry may do everything the Treo 600 does regarding reading/receiving e-mails. But, it isn't a Palm device (nor does it do a very good job regarding managing calendar, to do list, etc.). Further, in my own personal experience, the phone wasn't very good either. The Treo 600 is an excellent Palm device, with a very good phone, as well as a Blackberry-like e-mail device.

                          So, in my own opinion, there really is no comparison between the Blackberry and the Treo 600.

                          Your mileage may vary.

                          Randy Stokes
                          randystokes@cox.net
                          Not exactly.
                          * The BB _does_ support with wireless calendaring from Outlook, and quite well.
                          * Phone functionality is based solely on the carrier, not the BB. As a matter of fact, our CTO had a Verizon Wireless phone and we've got the BB thru Tmo, and she's startled by its phone clarity.
                          * Again, to clarify, the email and other basic 4 functions are based on the OS of the device.

                          Again, IMHO, if you're looking for something to wirelessly sync email and calendar and do it well (tasks/notes/contacts forthcoming), stick with the BB.

                          If it _has_ to be a PalmOS device, go fo' the Treo'.

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