What makes a Smartphone ‘smart’?

This week I took the leap from Blackberry to iPhone. My friends congratulated me on Facebook for making the change. Someone went so far as to comment, “it’s cool that you have a smartphone now.” While the Blackberry is not the hippest thing, surely it is considered a smartphone?

With mobile’s rising popularity we take for granted that running an operating system once made a phone into a smart phone. About.com defines a smart phone as a cell phone with extra features that a personal computer might have. Features of a smartphone could be the ability to send an email or edit documents – all things my Bberry could do.

I cannot delude myself into thinking there is no difference from Blackberry to iPhone. The apps are the clear differentiators. Although there was a Bberry app store, I cannot call it that with a straight face… When I heard there was going to be a Blackberry App world I actually laughed out loud… The difference is feeling hip, feeling included in this new club. It also depends on what you use it for and what industry you are in. I enjoyed the Blackberry immensely for years because I needed reliable voice and email. I always had iPhone envy. The Blackberry NEVER made me feel hip or cool. Speaking of cool. Don’t get me started on the Android! Perhaps the more accurate jargon to use for iPhone and Android is smartphone 2.0?

In theory I like the freedom of choices the Android gives, but the app store is clearly not as good. Yes features like swype, etc. are cool, but I place high value on ease of use. Androids are not as simple to use as iPhones. Other people have echoed my opinion on the usability issues of the Android, although I have to admit multi-touch is pretty freaking cool. On a geeky level I am drawn to the Android and it ends there. Owning an Android is akin to living without a television; the respective person waits for the topic to come up in order to point out how alternative they are. (Sorry hipster-geeks)

After reading various blogs my conclusion is that “smartphones” represent nearly every phone on the market right now. With multi-core microchips  in abundance and computing power rivaling desktops, smartphones have finally conquered PCs. What a lovely triumph.

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