A long time ago, before the iPhone was released, there were only two types of mobile phone devices on the market: phones and BlackBerrys. When you referred to your phone — a dumb phone that was usually a Nokia or a Motorola — you said “my phone”, and when you referred to your BlackBerry, you said “my BlackBerry”. BlackBerrys were far more than just phones, and despite what the BlackBerry haters say, they still are.
Back then, BlackBerry users were rabidly passionate and addicted to their BlackBerrys, giving birth to the term “CrackBerry”. It was at that time that I saw a job ad by a company that was looking for people who were extremely passionate about technology. Their ad included this text:
Do you get into the Windows vs Mac wars or the Vi vs Emacs wars ? Do you get angry when somebody calls your BlackBerry a “phone” ?
You get the idea.
Fast forward several years. BlackBerry’s market share has shrunk dramatically, the media doesn’t want to talk about anything other than the iPhone, and I never hear anybody say “my BlackBerry”, not even BlackBerry users. What happened ? Did BlackBerry users lose their passion ? Are they ashamed ? Are they afraid of being berated by iPhone users or Android users ? Why are they saying “my phone”, and no longer saying “my BlackBerry” ?
Over the past several years, iPhone fans and Android fans have put lots of pressure on BlackBerry users, trying to shame them into ditching their BlackBerrys for iPhones or Android phones. I don’t know if that’s the reason why BlackBerry users stopped calling their BlackBerrys “BlackBerrys”, and started calling them “phones”, but I’m willing to bet that not saying “BlackBerry” is hurting BlackBerry’s exposure, and could be one reason why BlackBerry doesn’t come to mind when some non-BlackBerry users consider getting a new phone.
Regardless, the fix is simple: stop telling people you have a “phone” and start telling them you have a BlackBerry. Say it loud, and say it proud. Give your BlackBerry the exposure it deserves. Don’t be ashamed, shy nor afraid. Be bold, be proud and tell it like it is. You don’t have a phone, you have a BlackBerry. Your BlackBerry.
After all, that device you have is more than just a phone, it’s a BlackBerry.