Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 15th Jan 2013 23:28 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless The smartphone world is, at this point, a two-horse race. Android has the numbers, Apple's iOS has the figures. Everything else - Symbian, Windows Phone, BlackBerry, etc. - are also-rans. Irrelevant in the grand scheme of things. Even though, say, Windows Phone not making any serious headway into the market, despite boatloads of money poured into the platform, RIM still thinks it can do better with BB10. Austrian website Telekom-Presse has a pretty detailed video hands-on with a BB10 device - the Z10 - and it left me with one burning question: what is BB10's identity?
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Multitasking
by Moochman on Wed 16th Jan 2013 00:10 UTC
Moochman
Member since:
2005-07-06

You are harping on a supposed lack of brand identity (which is in any case really country-dependent and not universal) while seemingly completely missing the interaction plus points...

-Real multitasking(!) with actually live previews of the apps (not like Android's pretending to multitask with fake previews)
-Integration of social networks directly into the OS (not available on iOS, on Android only via third-party hacks)
-Well-organized, comprehensive notifications center that's always a swipe away
-Keyboard *other than Swype* that actually innovates
-Indeed, very soon a hardware keyboard...

The user interface of BB10 looks chaotic, unfocused, cluttered. Things appear and disappear left, right, up, and down, and there doesn't really seem to be a single anchor point to go back to. There's no clear icon standard going on, and user interface elements are all different with no consistency. It feels very busy and messy, both visually and behaviourally.


Things appearing from different sides have very clear functions. I might point out that a similar approach was taken with MeeGo on the N9 and everyone (including you, if I recall) had only praise for that. As for no single anchor point to go back to, there is the task manager and app drawers, which you can easily swipe between--how is that not a "home screen"??

As far as the icons go, they look like, well, modernized BlackBerry icons. If you had every used a BlackBerry before you would recognize this. Android took a cue from them, not the other way around....

For me the identity of BB10 is extremely clear: a modern OS that focuses on communication and business use cases first and foremost. iOS is *far* far from this, Android is almost there but for the lack of services integration and inconsistencies/slowdowns that still make the user experience herky-jerky at times. The only OS that even tried to do this in recent memory is webOS.

I can understand that you let your dislike of certain aesthetics ruin any joy you might get out of such a purely functional approach to a mobile OS. But no need to ruin it for the rest of us.

Edited 2013-01-16 00:22 UTC

Reply Score: 10

RE: Multitasking
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 16th Jan 2013 00:22 in reply to "Multitasking"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

I can understand that you let your dislike of certain aesthetics ruin any joy you might get out of such a purely functional approach to a mobile OS. But no need to ruin it for the rest of us.


This article is about identity. Something to make it stand out. Not a single consumer cares about real multitasking. 'Social integration' isn't working for Windows Phone and webOS either - people prefer applications. Notification center - uh, Android?

So far, there's nothing that makes it stand out from what's already available. If there's anything that BeOS has taught me, it's that you need a large enough userbase to survive. I've see nothing so far that will pry said users away from iOS or Android.

You may think the visual stuff doesn't matter - but out there, in the real world of sales and consumers? It does.

Edited 2013-01-16 00:23 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Multitasking
by Moochman on Wed 16th Jan 2013 00:29 in reply to "RE: Multitasking"
Moochman Member since:
2005-07-06

Not a single consumer cares about real multitasking.


So I guess I'm not a "real" consumer?

'Social integration' isn't working for Windows Phone and webOS either - people prefer applications.


You don't need to get rid of the applications. But the integration of notifications and contacts is the difference. Anyone who used webOS with Facebook for any length of time back in the day knows what I am talking about and would be able to recognize how deficient other platforms still are.

Notification center - uh, Android?


A list of notifications in no particular order (so no relying on visual memory), each of which requires you to open up a different app with completely incongruous interfaces just to see the contents, is not even close.

You may think the visual stuff doesn't matter - but out there, in the real world of sales and consumers? It does.


Of course it matters. Especially to "consumers". But thing is, this actually matches BlackBerry's existing brand identity. You may not like it or think it's "cool", but then again neither was the aesthetic of MS Windows or Word compared to Mac, and yet due to its usefulness it has still managed to maintain a stronghold in the business world...

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[2]: Multitasking
by Morgan on Wed 16th Jan 2013 02:48 in reply to "RE: Multitasking"
Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

This article is about identity.


Fair enough, but then you are basing your critique on a single video of a yet to be released product, so until you've held and used one I'm not going to let your obvious negative bias cloud my own conclusions. I'd love to see a followup article if you do get your hands on a real device.

Not a single consumer cares about real multitasking.


Come on now, you know better than to make a grossly generalized statement like that! We're all consumers here, no matter that we use our phones and other devices for both business and leisure. Multitasking is one of those functions that benefit everyone whether they know it or not.

'Social integration' isn't working for Windows Phone and webOS either - people prefer applications.


Actually it's one of the best things about both of those platforms and is one of the reasons they have loyal followings despite huge issues with each platform. Instead of having a bunch of wildly different apps with poor performance and no integration, you get all of your social streams under one integrated and streamlined interface. And if you don't like that paradigm, the individual apps are still available in their antiquated and clunky original formats.

Notification center - uh, Android? So far, there's nothing that makes it stand out from what's already available.


You're right, there isn't much more you can do with that concept. RIM's implementation fits in well with the rest of the interface though.

If there's anything that BeOS has taught me, it's that you need a large enough userbase to survive. I've see nothing so far that will pry said users away from iOS or Android.


Maybe we haven't been watching the same videos, but I've seen a hell of a lot that makes me excited to try one out live. My daily frustration with Android as a phone OS continues to grow. I'm still enjoying it as a tablet OS on a device that I pick up occasionally, but depending on it for a 24/7 communication device is nearly painful at times.

You may think the visual stuff doesn't matter - but out there, in the real world of sales and consumers? It does.


I'm highly visually oriented and I absolutely love the interface! It's designed to stay out of the way when it needs to, and it looks great doing so. I'm eager to give it a whirl when Sprint picks up the new BB line this summer.

Reply Parent Score: 8

RE[2]: Multitasking
by shmerl on Wed 16th Jan 2013 07:01 in reply to "RE: Multitasking"
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

Not a single consumer cares about real multitasking.

Just because Android, iOS and WP are bad at multitasking doesn't mean that users don't care about it. They just don't know any better (given what's most commonly available). Hopefully mobile Linux releases like Sailfish and Ubuntu Phone will break the trend. So BB10 while having decent multitasking since it's based on QNX won't be unique in this aspect to make it an identity.

Edited 2013-01-16 07:06 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[2]: Multitasking
by fran on Wed 16th Jan 2013 13:47 in reply to "RE: Multitasking"
fran Member since:
2010-08-06


This article is about identity. Something to make it stand out. Not a single consumer cares about real multitasking. 'Social integration' isn't working for Windows Phone and webOS either - people prefer applications. Notification center - uh, Android?



Among it's users BB already has a identity separate from the intricacies of a UI.
It's a whole confluence of factors.

Edited 2013-01-16 13:48 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Multitasking
by chithanh on Thu 17th Jan 2013 10:41 in reply to "RE: Multitasking"
chithanh Member since:
2006-06-18

Not a single consumer cares about real multitasking.
Does being able to view your GPS or look up something on the Internet while making a Skype call qualify as "real multitasking"? If so, then there exist consumers who care about real multitasking.

So far, there's nothing that makes it stand out from what's already available.
Nothing for makes it stand out for you. So maybe this could be a hint that you are not the target demographic.

You may think the visual stuff doesn't matter - but out there, in the real world of sales and consumers? It does.
Of course the visual stuff matters, or else large high-resolution touchscreens wouldn't be so popular. 1080p is going to be the main selling point for 2013 smartphones. However, the UI behind this could be BB10's UI, Sense, TouchWiz or plain Android - consumers have demonstrated that they don't care a lot.

Reply Parent Score: 3