Monday, November 12, 2012

PC or PoC: Blackberry 8330

Ok. Technically this is a phone but, smartphones are really just baby computers. This Blackberry is a smartphone that can run apps. Because of this, this phone has not yet outlived its usefulness.
Now, don't get me wrong. This phone is old and slow. It connects to the internet at 1x speed. It takes 5 minutes for it to fully restart. It has 96mb of app storage (doesn't allow you to move apps to the card). Not to mention, no WiFi.

So the challenge before me was great. Circumstances beyond my control had forced me into this phone and now it was time to deal.

There were several things I liked about the phone. It did e-mail well. It could get on the internet and could be customized up to a point. So, this is how I was able to live with a phone that most consider past its prime.

The very first thing I did was replace the browser with Opera Mini. It displays web pages much more accurately than the built-in browser. I added Gigastrand and Linux4Everyone to the speed dial page (of course). Then I added,,,,, and Now, without installing any additional apps on the phone itself, I have access to al of the following apps:
  • Google search
  • Blogger
  • Google Docs (Drive)
  • Gmail
  • Google Maps
  • Voice Search
  • Latitude
  • News
  • Sync
  • Photos
  • Voice
  • YouTube
  • Calendar
  • Reader
  • Notebook
  • Tasks
  • Google+
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Ebay
  • Paypal
  • Accuweather (came with Opera)
  • Keloland (Local news, weather, sports)
Now, this is all nice but, some of the apps are better and starting with what is essentially a blank phone I had room.

So I installed the following apps.
  • My Verizon
  • Backup assistant
  • Battery Watch
  • Google Voice
  • Paypal
  • Ebay
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Scan Life (barcode Scanner)
  • YP Mobile
  • Skype
  • Google Maps
  • Tunein Radio
I started with a flashlight app, but I found if I simply went into Video Camera Settngs and Options then set the Light to turn on by default, I could use that as my flashlight app.

Everything else was either already on the phone or stuff I didn't use.

Some of the things that I wish I could do:
  • Square or Paypal here
  • Siri-type app (Vlingo did not work)
  • Some network tools
I then changed the left button to lock the phone (like a normal smartphone) and left the right to activate the Camera (default).

I downloaded the Gigastrand Wallpaper (the white one) and set it to the home screen picture then I had a phone I could live with that did about 90% of what my Android could do. No, not as well but it can do it.


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