Blackberry vs Treo (Google Results)

Holy cow! I was rummaging through the basement of statistics and kept seeing the search terms “blackberry vs treo” coming up in the results that brought people to my site. Then, I finally decided to go to Google and find out how far people have to go to get here.

I’m on the FIRST PAGE!? That’s right. Number 10 on Google’s search for the term. Holy cow. Well, perhaps I should write a little bit more to satisfy those who are visiting.

Below is my comparison, perhaps I’ll go more into detail if you’d like:

Good: Blackberry 7100t

  • The scroll wheel for navigation. It’s my first Blackberry, and I’ve found out why people rage about it. The scroll wheel is a wonderful way to navigate.
  • USB connector. I’ve never seen a phone that uses a USB cable for connecting both to the laptop or to the power adapter. Now that is just cool. One standard (read: not expensive to replace) cord to do everything. I think they even gave me 2 in my box.
  • Light weight. This baby is seriously light compared to the Treo.
  • Battery life is awesome (obviously depends on talk time) and it charges quickly when in the wall, not so quick plugged into a Mac’s USB port. But, the fact it charges while plugged into a laptop is pretty dang skippy.
  • Push email for no extra charge. It’s almost worth getting just for that.

Bad: Blackberry 7100t

  • The scroll wheel. Yes, I know I put it on the Good list too. It’s a great way to navigate if you keep things simple. Unfortunately, the more features that come out and the versatile Blackberries try to be, the more features you have to scroll through to get to the one you use all the time. It tries to default to the one you want, but doesn’t do a good job if you’re particular about things like I am.
  • Typing on the keyboard stinks. They say you can type an email quickly with the SmartType (or whatever it’s called), but it’s not easy. You can type it out quickly, but then I have to go back and edit all the words it didn’t get right. It’s not easy to edit either. Ctrl this, Shift that, scroll, no not that button. Yea… not easy.
  • Web browser stinks. It’s ugly, not fully rendered (text only) and you have to use the scroll bar to get from one link to another. In these days of lots of info on a page, I was hoping for better scrolling with the wheel.
  • No PDF support (or .doc, .xml, etc). As a business person, this kind of support is essential.

Good: Treo 650

  • Full keyboard. Although it’s small. I eventually got good enough typing with my thumbs that I could whip out an email in a few seconds.
  • Camera. I can’t tell people enough about how I want my camera back. I would take photos of tons of stuff I see during the day and email them to this blog. Now, it’s like going through withdrawls from crack.
  • Quick navigation from the middle buttons.
  • PDF, Word, Excel, and more support. Not to mention it was very easy to view the attachments in my email.
  • Customized menus.

Bad: Treo 650

  • The camera was only .3 megapixel, which was fine, even if kinda grainy, for website stuff. I’m not gonna make prints off ’em. (rumor: the Treo 700w will have a 1.3 megapixel camera on it. Yay.)
  • It’s quite the weighty phone. Although, for basically a mini laptop, I don’t expect it to be a feather.

And the Winner Is….

As some of my older posts have noted, I prefer the Treo 650 over the Blackberry 7100t any day of the week.

It’s unfortunate that T-Mobile doesn’t carry it or I’d go back to it today (T-Mobile is my recommended service of choice in the Bellingham, WA area). Sprint had the 650 but their service absolutely sucked. Although, I’ve heard that since the merger with Nextel, they might be better in our area now.

But, why go for the Treo 650 when I can just wait for T-Mobile to carry the 700w. I’ve been talking to some friends at T-Mobile who have informed me that they should be carrying it at the early part of 2006. Needless to say, I’m stoked.

And this concludes the daily broadcast of my comparison between the Treo 650 and the Blackberry 7100t. I hope all you Google people find it worthwhile. If so, feel free to drop a comment and/or a trackback. Enjoy.

Nate Ritter lives in Austin, Texas (U.S.), popularized the #hashtag and creates web applications for a living. He also does miles and point hacking to enable cheap travel for his family. More here →

23 Comments on "Blackberry vs Treo (Google Results)"

  1. Ruth says:

    First off…did you run out of things to do yesterday? I don’t know a lot about blogs, but I think that your suppose to space the posts on your blog instead of doing them all in one day. :-) Second on the whole Blackberry vs Treo thing…your crazy! But congratulations on making it as #10 on Google, that is cool!

  2. nate says:


    #1. No, I didn’t run out of things to do yesterday. I simply chose to work on marketing myself a little better instead of work on contracts for the day. ;)

    #2. I just wanted to give you something to do today… like read all my posts. Additionally, I came up with a million things to write about yesterday. I have a bunch more to write about today, but it’ll probably be kinda slim cause today is a contract day. But, thanks for caring enough to ask.

    #2b. Care to elaborate on the craziness (Blackberry vs. Treo)? Tell me why you love your Blackberry 7100t, Ruth. Tell us all.

  3. Ruth says:

    I never said that I loved my Blackberry, its a phone and I don’t really have an opinion on it. Except to say that I do like the scroll navigation and a camera on the Blackberry would be great. I just thinks its funny that you have such a strong opinion on the phones.

    Also who is “us all” the 5 people that read your blog?!?! haha just kidding. :)

  4. nate says:

    Hah, funny funny. Ok, I just thought you’d have something more to say since you said I was crazy.

    Oh, and there’s an average of 80 people a day who visit my site…. so :P.

  5. karen says:

    Interesting post! I have a Treo 650,and love it. I am getting TomTom Nav 5 bluetooth GPS to use with my Treo.

    The Blackberry and Treo are both great devices. I am thrilled with my Treo — it does it all!

  6. nate says:

    Thanks for commenting Karen.

    That’s an interesting little device you have there. I haven’t seen it before. It looks awesome!

    I agree with you about the Treo. Although, take a look at the new blackberry, they’re getting close to matching the Treo. I’m not convinced yet, but it’s looking like some good (low priced) competition is coming their way.

  7. sharonr says:

    I have been on Treo 650 for about 6 months–company “suggested/supports Blackberry. Which is very best Blackberry to buy?

  8. nate says:


    Thanks for the comment. What’s your biggest priorities in your Treo (which you’ll need/want in a Blackberry)?

    We’ll see if we can help ya out.

  9. Robby says:

    I love reading your post. Have you had a chance to compare the Treo with the new blackberry 7130 yet? Im interested in your opinion

  10. nate says:

    Hi Robby,

    Thanks for the comment. I have not reviewed the 7130 yet. What is it about the blackberry that you like? Oh, and here’s a basic feature comparison between the Blackberry 7130 and the Treo 700w: (Feature Review from Phone Scoop)

  11. nate says:

    Robby replied via email:

    Hi Nate
    When I went to verizon and ask the employee for a suggestio on being able to browse the web and send and receive email, he suggested the BB over the Treo. I like the weight of the BB and the way it feels in my hand (that sounds weird doesn’t it!) I love the push technology that allows my email (both personal and work) come to my BB. I like being able to browse the web without having to be near a network. I don’t anything about the Treo.

    My response was this:

    Hi Robby,

    Well, there are a few things that the BB has over the Treo of which you’ve mentioned a few. The one thing that most BB users don’t understand about the Treo, and that is not highly publicized is that it also has the ability to do push email. You have to pay a little extra for a service called Good Technology, but it’s there and works like a charm.

    Physicallly, the Treo is a bit heavier bigger, but to be honest, it never trumped the features the Treo has. Treo can handle all the attachments that come in your email (pdf, doc, xls, whatever), the palm version syncs to a mac which BB doesn’t do, the camera (by far my favorite feature), the touch screen, and the customizability of push buttons and navigation are what really make me wish I had my Treo back. I also used to blog using my treo, which my BB can’t do.

    The scrolling navigation is about the only thing that I halfway like about the BB. But, it’s not enough to make me stick with it. As soon as I can, I’m switching back to the Treo. But, it depends on what you want for features. Is the lightweight and smallness of the BB something important to you? Is a camera? What about email attachments? Those are usually the big things that make people switch from what I’ve heard. Anyway, I hope this helps you out.


    Nate Ritter

  12. sean says:

    Hi Nate,
    Can you shed some light on the future releases of Treo. I am hoping the next release comes up with ‘more inbuilt memory’, ‘sturdy Linux OS” and maybe even integrated Wifi capability’. I guess that may be too much to ask for :)

    Look forward to hear your opinion

  13. Brian Adkins says:

    Forget #10, you were ranked #1 when I searched for:

    blackberry treo

    not bad! Thanks for the post. I have a Treo 650 and I do like having the camera quite a bit. I end up using it more than my “good” digital camera since it’s always with me.

  14. nate says:

    Thanks Brian! Good to know Google’s algorithm changes have actually helped me rather than hurt. :)

    And yes, I did the same thing when I had my Treo (using the camera more than my actual digital camera). I did that mostly because I could immediately send it here, to my blog. That’s what the “MoPho” category is about (Moble Photos). Anyway, it’s a great phone/tool, and I can’t wait to get another one. But now the hard part is deciding between the Treo and the Apple iPhone, considering it’s supposed to be released around the same time as my contract ends.

    Thanks for the comments, by the way. You guys are all amazing that you’ve even bothered to comment. I’m always surprised to see the amount, and I’m super excited about having people to chat about this with.

    Sean, ah, future releases of the Treo. Well, it’s a tough call. To be honest, I think probably engadget would probably have the scoop on any rumors of that. They’re an incredible resource of new up and coming stuff. I wish I had insiders like they do (if you’re one of them, feel free to contact me anytime!).

    As for my opinion, though, I’m hoping they will start to get slimmer. The fatness has been a niggling complaint for a long time with lots of users, so I’m hoping they’ll get the picture and move to a slimmer phone.

    Additionally, I also hope they stay in the Palm realm or move into a Linux OS rather than their current trend of MS. I can tell they are wanting more business users, but from what I’ve seen of people who use them, it’s mostly small business and entrepreneurs who really do use them. Unfortunately, from my experience, those folks are using more Mac OS (Linux-like), which needs to be a consideration.

    Wifi would be awesome too, but I’d be happy with just a speedy connection regardless of the network it runs on (wifi, 3g, whatever). But it definitely needs to be faster than what it ran on with the 650. I don’t think it’s too much to ask for. We’ve all been asking for this stuff for years now. They just need to build it in. That’s where the competition with the iPhone is going to get heated – those features and the natural easy sync with all things Apple.

    What do you guys think about the future of Palm Treos vs the Apple iPhone? Or just Treos in general? What do you want to see the most?

  15. dom says:

    thanks for the info. You were actually #2 on my google search this morning. I was leaning a little toward blackberry, but now I’m not sure anymore…

  16. Jane says:

    you were first on my google search of blackberry vs. treo!

    I have to get one of them, and can’t decide what to choose. I have Spring and don’t want to bother switching….the BB seems best for my needs (mainly email and phone) but I like the Treo for all the other functions.

    So Nate, which one works best with my Mac?? Noone can answer this simple question! Please Nate, tell me you can!

  17. nate says:

    Well, if you want to work with the software that comes with the Palm version of the Treo, the right choice is the Treo. However, I’ve heard the new BB’s have a sync that works. I haven’t seen the software or how well it works yet, but I’ve heard that rumor.

    On another note, I do know that a PocketMac exists which does do a good job of syncing BB’s with the mac. There’s another alternative called MissingSync which I’ve never used.

    Personally, in this case, if you think BB’s fit you better, I’d try out one of those sync tools for the mac and stick with your BB. Try not to get one of those sync programs that has their own applications in them (for instance, their own calendar instead of using iCal, etc). Watch out for those.

    I hope that helps, Jane. :)

  18. john says:

    i came across your posts and found them very informative. i am in the market for my fist smart phone. i live in canada and the phone will be for my personal use. i have narrowed my choices down to a BB Curve or a TReo 680. i want a GSM phone. my priorities are some internet browsing(to get stock quotes, send a few emails and some SMS(this is why i want a full QWERTY keyboard), i want a good organizeer(to compliment or maybe replace my daily planner). the phone function is the least important to me, but i still do want a phone.
    the camera is not something i will use. i have looked at both phones and both appear to be okay. both would handle my needs. the major thing that sticks out in my mind is the size and the weight of the treo.
    do you have any opinion of these 2 phones. thanks a bunch.
    maybe someone else has an opinion on these 2 phones. i would be interested to hear it.

  19. Brad says:

    If you want a QWERTY keyboard phone there are several options, but they depend on your carrier. If you’ve got TMobile then the sidekick is the way to go, else a blackberry in my own opinion. I would not go with somethink like the iPhone since there is no tactile touch of a keyboard. You have no sensory input from pressing buttons, which is the biggest complaint my friends with iPhones have.


  20. Anna says:

    Hi Nate; you came up first on my Google search for comparison of BB and Treo 650. Thank you for taking the time to share this info because I’m buying my very first cell phone (smart phone) ever and after doing some research, it’s come down to BB 7130e or Treo 650. I don’t know what that Ruth chick was on about at the very top of your blog. Of course we need opinions on products such as these, which we use constantly and many of us for our business.

    I’m leaning toward the Treo 650 for the bigger screen and easier keyboard. I’m a teeny bit hard of hearing so I like a phone which I can hear the person talking. Are Treo 650s loud enough?

  21. nate says:

    Anna, yes, Treo’s are plenty loud enough both with their ringer and with hearing the person’s voice.

    And you’re very welcome about the post.

    I have to give a ton of credit to Ken, though, who keeps answering people’s questions on a scale of knowledge much greater than mine. Ken, you are the guy who keeps this thing rolling and helpful for people. Thank YOU!

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