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Old 08-02-2006, 07:25 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Questions about using BB as a simple PDA ?

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Hi!

I'm happy that I have found this forum for some help!

I would like to know if it's possible tu use a blackberry as a simple PDA without the real time email capability.

My problem is that my office doesn't support blackberry. The only phone/pda accepted is the treo 650 but without the email functionnality and since the price on ebay of the treo 650 vs BB 7290 is like 250 $ difference I will try to get them to accept BB.

But for that I meed to know if it can only be used as a PDA and if it's compatible with lotus notes.

Your answer will be really helpful!

Last edited by Couchsurfer : 08-03-2006 at 08:33 AM. Reason: Clearer question
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Old 08-02-2006, 09:12 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Couchsurfer
...can only be used as a PDA...
Absolutely. If the native apps do not satisfy your needs, there are a multitude of third-party apps that can provide you with most of the essential PDA functions users desire. For example, you can (with the appropriate third-party apps):

1. Create to do and task lists.
2. Set multiple alarms with recurrence.
3. Perform dictionary lookups in multiple languages.
4. Perform (limited) conversions via the native Calculator.
5. Set calendar appointments with or without alarms.
6. View incoming, outgoing and recent call logs.
7. Store passwords and other sensitive information in encrypted databases.
8. Sync your contacts, tasks and appointments with various PIMs.
9. Take and store notes on the device.
10. Backup and restore the device.
11. Take advantage of Bluetooth features.

Quote:
...and if it's compatible with lotus notes.
"Lotus Notes 5.0.6 or later, 6.0, 6.5, 7.0" - blackberry.com
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Old 08-02-2006, 10:45 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Is it possible, yes but in my opinion it is a poor PDA. Even with email, the PDA functionality isn't nearly as good as a plam or pocketpc. If you need secure email over wireless then Blackberry is the solution. Anything else it falls far short.

Out of the box the palm and pocketpc do so much more. Want to bring your files with you, no problem, just sync them. No room on the device, SD cards give you virtually unlimited storage. Need to read or edit a MS Word document or Excel spreadsheet, Pocket Office will do it as will software that comes with the palm. There is a free pdf reader from Adobe. Multimedia or viewing pictures is much better on the PocketPC. You can sync your email back at your office and get html email as well. You can't even copy an appointment on the BB without a third party program.

Software is much less expensive on the non BB platforms. Consider this for the BB: need MS Office capability, $200 for dynoplex eOffice, need a pdf viewer Repligo is $80/year. Need a decent today screen, PocketDay is $35, need a utility to store passwords CryptMagic is $35. Need to bring various office docs with you to read or refer to during a meeting, can't be done. Want to have a decent program to take notes and to-dos you need idea/taskMatrix $100 for the bundle. Need IM, you have to get a third party program ~$35.

Can you do some of the PIM functions without third party software using the BB, sure, but it isn't very good.

After re-reading my email, I should note that I use my BB as a PDA throughout the day for email of course but also addressbook, notes, calendar, task management as well as looking up information on the net. If you don't use the device heavily you can probably get by with just the basic PDA functions it provides. All depends on what you plan to do and how much you plan to use it.

Regards-Michael G.
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Old 08-03-2006, 04:25 AM   #4 (permalink)
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If you don't care about email, then don't get a BlackBerry. If your company allows Treos, then you are going to have an easier time getting them to accept another Palm model (some of them are quite cheap) than you are getting them to accept a BlackBerry. Palm is a much better PDA than a BlackBerry. The BlackBerry is probably the best smartphone, but probably the worst PDA of all the big brands. For contact management, available software, and general PDA functionality, you would be better off with a regular phone that had Bluetooth and a Palm that had Bluetooth so that you could dial and text from the PDA, than you would with a BlackBerry.

The only reason to get a BlackBerry is if you want well-integrated, reliable, fast email and text messaging at a cheap price. Otherwise Palm and Windows Mobile have more software, better software, cheaper software, and more capable software.
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Old 08-03-2006, 08:03 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Thank's for the advices but to be honnest I already have a palm tungsten T wich I only use as a contact manager and for the calendar (since the email don't sync with this model) so I should have been clearer In my question.

If I'm tired of always having a phone and a pda to do the job done and if the only features that I want on my pda is contact management and calendar as well as being able to do phone call is it still better to get a treo or a BB can do the job for far less in price.
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Old 08-03-2006, 08:59 AM   #6 (permalink)
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The 8700 can do the job. In fact, it isn't really bad at the job. Just don't expect to do much more than that. It is a fully functional address book, with a decent calendar, and reasonable built-in apps. However, if you are use to something like Datebook on your Palm, the calender will disappoint. If you have been using apps like expense trackers or time trackers, or spreadsheets, or anything like that, don't expect the same quality and performance you would from a Palm app.

I like my 8700 just fine, and the price was one of the reasons I chose it over a Treo or a Tungsten/phone combo. However there are many things you take for granted on a full PDA that the BB doesn't have. If you're using the email it makes up for it (in my opinion making it a better product than the Treo by far) in speed and reliability, but standing on its own as a PDA, it is weak.
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