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Old 07-15-2005, 05:56 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Instant Messaging

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At work most of us starting using the T-Mobile Sidekick and later upgrading to the Sidekick II. Overall, everyone seems to be pleased with their devices. The AOL IM, email, text messaging, and calendar are probably the most frequently used features. Very few use the phone because most of our employees are deaf/hard of hearing. We only use the unlimited data plan for $29.99 a month. Unlimited email, text messaging, web browsing, AOL instant messaging, and so on.

We are looking into possibly getting the blackberry handhelds when the contract expires. More specifically the 7290. However, after several hours browsing the different service providers: T-Mobile, Cingular, Verizon, and Alltel it is not clear to us if the instant messaging feature is available. We're under the impression we have to pay $15 or $20 extra a month just to have instant messaging?

Can anyone explain if instant messaging is really available on the blackberry? If so, which wireless carrier do you suggest? Any feedback would be appreciated.
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Old 07-15-2005, 09:28 PM   #2 (permalink)
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DON'T CHOOSE CINGULAR. That would be my only advice. They charge you extra for text messaging. Also, they don't have instant messaging software (on the 7100G, anyway.) You have to buy that separately. And even then, they don't "officially" support third party applications... so half the time you can't get them to make the necessary modifications to your account to add data features to your phone... and then even if you can get them to -- you'll be lucky if they don't charge you for each KB of data transfer.

If I could go back in time I would've chosen another carrier. I've been severely disappointed with Cingular, and will leave them after my contract is up.
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Old 07-16-2005, 11:35 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Well, I use a Verzion 7250. For my IM duties, I rely on Verichat. There are many threads here that detail what Verichat does. In short, it's a multi client IM service, that is very similar to Trillian. It allows you to setup and maintain MSN, ICQ, AIM, and YIM accounts. The AIM and YIM on the Sidekick II is superior over Verichat. Not only is it more stable (fewer disconnects) but it retains the true IM feature sets of each service (audible alerts, customizable status messages, etc...)

There are a lot of other things that need to be put in perspective when deciding between the two devices. If IM is purely what you are using as a focal point to choosing a device, then you may want to go towards the Sidekick. However, they only offer Yahoo and AIM for free. Verichat is $30 a year. One of my good friends has a sidekick. Loves it for IM, push emailing (although, BB is still superior), and the games. I feel it's fragile, nearly useless for a phone, no bluetooth, camera is poor, no holster and way too oversized. But to each their own, I guess.
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Old 07-16-2005, 12:44 PM   #4 (permalink)
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T Mobiles 7100t I believe comes with an IM client built in, as far as I know. As for messaging between you an others there is a new software on the boards called BB messanger. Search for it and read if it would work for you and co workers.

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Old 07-16-2005, 02:27 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Tmobile comes with an IM client built in... but it transmits the IMs using SMS messaging. So you need unlimited SMS if you're going to use it.

As far as third party apps. I've tried nearly all of them and think Webmessenger is the best, stable, most reliable one.
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Old 07-16-2005, 06:16 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I'm a fan of IM+ (supports all the major IM services - AOL, Yahoo, ICQ, MSN, Jabber). Available at handango.com.
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Old 07-16-2005, 09:19 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phlyersphan
I'm a fan of IM+ (supports all the major IM services - AOL, Yahoo, ICQ, MSN, Jabber). Available at handango.com.
Have you tried VeriChat?
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Old 07-17-2005, 09:29 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks for all your feedback! Greatly appreciated!
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Old 07-17-2005, 07:18 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I downloaded the Blackberry Messanger directly from their web site. It uses the Pin to Pin ability of all BB's. I have cingular and this bypasses the text message charges. If you are in a group like i am that is all BB, this is easy and free.
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Old 07-17-2005, 09:08 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Wirelessly posted (7250: BlackBerry7250/4.0.0 Profile/MIDP-2.0 Configuration/CLDC-1.1)

RIM has announced they intent to release IM clients for Yahoo, AIM and others later this summer. They are working with the IM services on these clients....and they will be offered as part of the operating system on the BB.

I would be patient for a month to see how this develops.
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Old 07-17-2005, 10:23 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I would stay with t-mobile... they have a combined mins and data plan. you get 1000 mins unlimited data and unlimited text. T-mobile is the only one the offers unlimited text. I use Ramble for my AIM. its better then the preinstalled one and its free.
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