I’d like to introduce a new series of interviews to the Inside BlackBerry blog with guest blogger Corey Herscu (@cellguru). In the coming weeks, we’re going to hand him the reins for a few posts and introduce you to his program.
Corey has been an avid BlackBerry fan for years, and while he often uses other devices as a tech blogger, the latest BlackBerry OS 10.2.1 update prompted him to make the switch full time. He’s not alone – throughout the series, he’ll introduce you to professionals, influencers, and hyper-productive mobile users that he’s challenged to use BlackBerry 10 as their exclusive mobile platform. We’ve outfitted them with the latest BlackBerry devices like the BlackBerry Z30 and the BlackBerry Q10, and over the next few weeks, Corey will chronicle their experiences.
I sat down with him at his Toronto office this week to discuss the project and dive deep into what compels him to teach others about what’s new and great about BlackBerry 10.
DH: I want to introduce you to our readers. Tell me about the program and why you’ve chosen BlackBerry.
CH: I’ve been on BlackBerry for a long time. My first BlackBerry was the BlackBerry 7290, then the BlackBerry Pearl. I was always enamored by what a BlackBerry could do. For me, it’s also about what BlackBerry represents to Canada, and about Canadian pride. The type of people I interact with every day inspired the program. In my role as a tech writer, I get to see how a number of different types of professionals use their mobile phones, and I wanted to get a real productivity device into their hands.
DH: Tell me what you’re using right now and what drove you to start the program.
CH: Currently, I’m using a white BlackBerry Z30 as my main device, though as a tech blogger, I always have a few phones on the go at any given time. I was driven to start this program after updating to the latest BlackBerry 10 software, BlackBerry 10.2.1. Once I did that, I realized what the device could do with the latest iteration, and found myself enamored by BlackBerry once again. Look at the strides that have been made in just over a year, I’m really impressed.
DH: What is it specifically about the BlackBerry Z30 that you love?
CH: It’s the feel . . . the quality is there, it just feels solid. A high-quality build is rare in the industry right now so the BlackBerry Z30 really shines. I also love the BlackBerry Priority Hub, and the battery life I’m getting is unreal.
DH: Walk me through the essence of the program.
CH: I wanted to seek out professionals in different verticals and ask them to switch over to the latest from BlackBerry to give it a try. Some have been BlackBerry customers for a long time but haven’t upgraded to BlackBerry 10 yet, some are using other platforms as their primary device, and others are on BlackBerry 10 already but might not be aware of all the things 10.2.1 has to offer. After I get them onboard, I brief them on the device and set up everything for them, like their contacts and accounts. I hold their hand through the switch process and make sure they’re comfortable using it. After a couple of weeks, I’ll interview them and report back to Inside BlackBerry readers with stories from key people in the program.
DH: What has the response been so far?
CH: There’s a learning curve, but a good one. They tell me the keyboard is unbelievable. They can’t get over how much more efficiently they can type with this keyboard. There’s an adjustment, as there should be with any new technology, but people can fly once they get used to the software. They all agree it’s a messaging powerhouse, whether for social media, emails or browsing. It’s snappy.
DH: Who’s your ideal target for this program… who are we going to get to meet throughout the series?
CH: My ideal candidates are people who demand a lot from their phone, who really depend on it to get the job done — the type of people who aren’t afraid to write a ton of emails from their phone. They Tweet, text, and BBM all day to stay in touch with the office, with friends, and home. Basically, imagine someone who needs to power walk through his or her entire day.
DH: What do you say to people who haven’t given BlackBerry 10 a chance, or to reviewers who looked at the first BlackBerry 10?
CH: I say go back and give BlackBerry 10.2.1 a try, re-review it. Install your favorite apps – for me, they’re all there and they work. I just want to encourage people to try it before dismissing it. When people get to use it full-time, what I’m hearing is “Wow, I didn’t realize everything it can do.”
DH: Anything else you want to say to Inside BlackBerry readers before you wrap up?
CH: Try it out; break the mold and step out of your comfort zone. All too often, I find people who are stagnant with their technology, they’re afraid to try something new. I thought of this program as a way to get something that I love into the hands of people who otherwise may have written it off.
You can stay up to date on the series, here, on Inside BlackBerry in the Feature Stories section. Be sure to follow along as we challenge professionals to step out of their comfort zone and try the new BlackBerry 10 platform. Thanks again to Corey for his time. As always, feel free to connect with us in the comments below.
Corey Herscu is a paid contributor to Inside BlackBerry and has been compensated for his work on the program.