April 26 2010

RIM Pretty Much Screwed BlackBerry Tour Buyers Today

You know how buying a first generation device is always a bad idea? There is always something missing from it, and it inevitably comes out in the next release? Well, Research In Motion (RIM), the makers of BlackBerry phones just hosed its customers in a whole new way that even makes me go “wow.”

Last year the BlackBerry Tour was released.  It was touted as the successor to the BlackBerry 8830, the company’s last world phone which had been released two years previous.  Before that it was the BlackBerry 7290, which had been two years before the 8830.  Logic tells you that 2011 should have been the next world phone from RIM, and it was also hopefully going to add Wi-Fi support, and maybe an optical taackpad since the Tour’s trackball was pretty much a total disaster.

I picked up a Tour as my 8830 was dying, and while I initially loved the Tour, that love eventually turned to hate.  I mean, true hate.  I was ready to throw that phone against a wall I was so sick of it a mere six months into owning it.  So, using one of our other Sprint lines which could be upgraded, I bought an HTC Hero, and the Tour now is my back up phone, collecting dust in a drawer.  I thought that perhaps I would look at the next world phone from BlackBerry in 2011, but until then I’d be using the Hero.

Well, imagine my surprise today when the BlackBerry Bold 9650 was announced.  Essentially it is the Tour … upgraded.  A mere eight months after the Tour hit the streets, it is being retired and replaced by a phone with almost the exact same physical body except it has an optical trackpad and Wi-Fi.  Well, imagine that.

Technically, what RIM just told you was, “Well, see, it was time for a new world phone, and the Bold wasn’t ready, so we churned out a piece of crap phone called the Tour to hold us over and not lose out on all those people who were ready for a two year upgrade … thanks for playing along!”

The Tour was technically a third generation device, and you should have felt safe in buying it, but, nope, RIM decided to play some games.  Why isn’t this called a Tour update?  I mean, it is almost exactly the same except for a few upgrades.  Because then people really would catch on to what RIM just did to everyone who bought a Tour.  Basically, eight months ago, RIM sold us an underpowered, underspecced place holder phone while they worked on perfecting the real phone.

Good job RIM, you just turned me from a customer who was willing to come back to one that hopes you rot in Hell.

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