View Full Version : Need advice on choosing first Blackberry!

12-22-2008, 06:40 PM
Hi experts!

I need to buy my first Blackberry ASAP. I currently use Verizon for cell service but my priority is to have a Blackberry that A) has great cell service in NYC--where I am based--and USA-wide and B) has easy international service for phone and emails, esp in Europe, and in Colombia where I'll be next week. I think Colombia has GSM.

I heard that you need to use some sort of SIM card if you have a Verizon Blackberry. I need a user-friendly Blackberry (I'm a bit of a Luddite) that will just work anywhere I go internationally, without having to switch SIM cards in and out. (Although I hear it's best to use a SIM card to pay local rates? Do most international BB users do this? Seems like a hassle).

Any opinion between which BB product to get and which provider between Verizon, T-Mobile and AT&T to use? Also, is the iPhone a better option? Thanks in advance for any advice!

Berry One
12-22-2008, 07:15 PM
Your options: Storm for coolness or 8830 World Edition if you need truly proven reliable device for emails and calls.

8830 runs on both CDMA and GSM networks, if you signed for proper plan and have Verizon SIM card (yes, Verizon GSM SIM card) provided. Ask in wireless store, they should know.

No need to switch SIM cards if you don't want to: it'll be in device and 8830 will automatically switch to GSM overseas and back to Verizon CDMA in USA.
You may have to configure automatic switching under Networks configuration on device, it should say 'Global' or something similar.

My friend who travels worldwide, mostly Europe both Western and Eastern occasionally Asia and South America, is very happy with his 8830. He is not what I would call computer geek, not at all. He was glad once he set his device with SIM card and Global settings he never had to do anything with it to have it work world wide.

He needs his device for emails and occasional phone calls while abroad. 8830 does the job.
He can afford to pay international data fees and voice charges, so he never bothers with SIM card swaps. 8830 just works for him.

12-23-2008, 09:54 AM
As always:

1. Select the carrier first, based on real world coverage where you need it.
2. Select the BB model from the carrier's offerings based on features you need/want and subjective preference (cost, size, keyboard, etc).

If you're sticking with Verizon you need to look at the World Edition BB's. Those are the ones with SIM cards used for GSM roaming while traveling internationally. You don't have to swap SIM cards. It's just that many find the lower cost of using a local prepaid SIM* significantly cheaper and worthwhile when traveling internationally. It's less hassle if you don't switch but probably more expensive. Again, it's another point where you need to make a personal judgment call on what you think suits you best.

When my ex was traveling throughout Australia, Taiwan, Egypt, Indonesia, etc we just got her an international BB data plan. Since we were on at&t there was no concern about getting a special "world edition".

* Note that you'd need to find one with Blackberry data if you want email/data.