It's a sad day for BlackBerry.
After years of being lauded as one of the most secure, work-friendly handsets money can buy, the US senate
has declared it's dropping BlackBerry as its long-standing smartphone of choice, bringing to an end the PR-boosting images of Obama clutching his black brick. The company has also announced it's axing the only phone it still makes with a physical keyboard.
With BlackBerry falling out of fashion, we've gathered together our fondest memories of its many handsets for old times' sake when it was way,
way ahead of the smartphone game.
Here's to you, BB.
Having a proper keyboard
Sure, the first time you saw it, you laughed at it.
It was tiny. It wasn't that obvious how you were supposed to use the number pad - the thing that dominated the front of every other phone. But the moment you got your thumbs round it, it just felt
right. Owning the same phone as Barack 'I'm a Legend' Obama
What phone does David Cameron own? Exactly, you couldn't give a gnat's tit about what phone David Cameron owns.
Barack Obama, on the other hand - of course you want what he's got in his pocket. Or rather, on the outside of his pocket, on a deeply retro BlackBerry belt wallet.
A phone holster, if you will.
WhatsApp? WhatsThePoint, more like? Right?
Back in 2005 when the world was still trying to squeeze text messages into 160 characters, BlackBerry users were spewing out reams of words via their own private messaging service.
It was a simpler time, when people were yet to discover the two-ticked Hell of WhatsApp.
"What's your BBM pin?"
There were two responses to this question:
1) A knowing wink, followed by a BlackBerry handshake and then heaps of super cool BBM chat.
2) "Is that like my body mass index? Are you a pervert? Leave me alone will you..."
Red light paranoia
You know how you get a phantom vibration? When you would swear on ya mam's life that your phone has just gone off in your pocket, pull it out and realise it didn't and begin thinking you probably have leg cancer because of how much time your phone spends pressed up against it?
Well it was the same with BlackBerry phones - but you could have
sworn you saw the red light blink from across the room... Downloading an app to change your notification light...
...and unleash ALL THE COLOURS OF THE RAINBOW!
Setting a new high score on Copter Snake? Bah. Snake wishes it was Copter. This was the original Flappy Bird. Using the Trackball
BlackBerry didn’t reinvent the wheel but it came awfully bloody close with the trackball: simple to use, deeply satisfying whenever clicked, it was a genuine pleasure.
It was also the mobile phone equivalent of evolving opposable thumbs.
Not some rubbish WAP email that only notified you of a message four days after it landed in your inbox.
It was the future before we knew what the future was.
A battery that lasted days
Even with email, BBM and
Copter! Having a memory card slot
What's that? Your Nokia can only store how many contacts?
HA! Excuse us while we just increase our storage with this massive memory card...
Absolutelyfreakingamazing. 100 points.
Getting a new handset every time your dad got an upgrade
Back in the day (the mid-2000s), BlackBerry was the business handset of choice for many companies. Whenever a new handset came out, that meant hundreds of thousands of office workers would pass their old handset down to their kids as the company rolled out the new model.
Hence, BlackBerry gained a cooler-than-cool, rich kid status without spending a penny on marketing themselves to a younger generation. Accidental, and yet, brilliant.
Owning a smartphone you knew no one else would have
There were SO MANY BlackBerry models, and they were all largely brilliant. If you actually gave a damn about having a handset that was a bit different to the average iPhone, BlackBerry was where it was at.
Hands up who had a BlackBerry Bold 9790? That's right, FOUR of you.
This thing made
so much sense. Sure, some other handsets had them, but the BlackBerry clickwheel was the king of clickwheels. Really. The way it went 'click'. Just magic. You owned a BlackBerry back when they were good
You loved BlackBerry when they were the master race of mobiles.
Now look at them. This is the Passport. It's massive. It doesn't make any sense. What happened, BB?
Using two hands
Wielding this podgy device with two hands, fingertips delicately sliding over button grooves like intuits kissing with their noses, was the only way to text from your BlackBerry. One handed was a fool’s errand.
Not practical, you say? Maybe so but it didn’t half look cool.