One thing I like about my job is that I get to see weird problems that never even entered my imagination. Sometimes it takes a while to diagnose some issues just because the cause is so unlikely that I unconsciously dismiss it, and it’s only after circling back that I identify it.
Well, now it’s not a client problem, but my own: Last week, my BlackBerry Curve crapped out, two weeks out of warranty, natch. It happened all by itself, just sitting in my pocket. I thought something happened to my battery, so I bought a new one, and thought that resolved the issue — for about two minutes. While it appeared to be charging/booting up, I noticed the BlackBerry getting WAY hot. Something must have been shorting.
I cracked it open today (sorry, no pics) and took a look around inside, and everything appeared normal, apart from a truly appalling amount of embedded pocket fluff and general grime. While I had it open, I plugged it in, put in the battery, and boom, within a minute the keyboard area was untouchably hot. That’s not good. I was tempted to leave it plugged in just to see if it would spontaneously combust — that would be some awesome YouTube material.
Anyway, it doesn’t look like the kind of thing I can repair. I need a new phone. I’ve been living on my old Treo 650 for the past week and it’s been hurting me; the Curve keyboard is dramatically better.
So what to get? BlackBerry Curve 8900 (a.k.a Javelin), Palm Pre, or something else? Mac man that I am, I still can’t do the iPhone, as I can’t touch-type on glass; that’s kind of a dealbreaker for me personally. The Curve 8900 is pretty much the same thing I had with a much better screen, and camera, plus GPS; I’ll probably never love it, but I’ll like it, and it will get the job done dependably. (For me, the BlackBerry Curve line is kind of the epitome of competence and functionality, if not exactly pleasure.) The Palm Pre looks like the state of the art, possibly surpassing the iPhone, but it’s not out and hasn’t been reviewed yet, and would mean I’d have to go Sprint. There will probably be another iPhone before too long, but it is very unlikely to have a keyboard, so I don’t think it’s worth holding out for.
Or maybe I’ll dial it all the way back and bust out my StarTAC 7000. You know that will get me free drinks at parties. (1996 parties.)