Disney ‘Mystery’ Western Carribbean Cruise 2011

We have been looking forward to this vacation all year. This is our second cruise in as many years as last year was our first ever: a 4 day quick hop to Nassau, day at sea and ending on Disney’s ‘private island’ in the Bahamas: Castaway Cay. Staci definitely caught the ‘fever’ and we decided to try our luck on a longer, 7 day cruise. Since I was already coming to Orlando in October for a conference, we found a 7 day Western Caribbean itinerary after my conference ended. Seemed like good luck and it was towards the tail end of hurricane season, too. So we booked it! Our original itinerary looked like this:
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First Impressions: BlackBerry 9930

After recent (and frequent) fights  with my BlackBerry Tour 9630 (I am a Verizon subscriber), I started considering that it might be time to get a new phone.  I have been a BlackBerry fan since the days of the 8700 and will freely admit an addiction to BlackBerry Messenger for quick chats with my wife, Staci.  But recently, I have been experiencing slow performance, hourglasses and just HORRIBLE lag from my current 9630.  Mainly, my frustrations pretty much had me cursing at the phone and ready to throw it out the window.  Staci decided that she had enough of hearing me complain and told me just to go out and get a new phone.  For those that might know my wife- this is a big deal!

I have been due for an upgrade since my failed experiment with a Droid X last year.  I liked the Droid, but after months of horrible battery life and the fact that I just could NOT get used to using a touch screen for emails and texts.  After I couldn’t be reached for tragic family news because of the Droid’s dead battery (~6 hours of use), I switched back to the 9630.  Knowing that an iPhone isn’t in the cards (see ‘touch screen vs. my thumbs’), I was drawn to the new 9930.  I’ve been asking for RIM to release this model forever.  A gorgeous touch screen with that BlackBerry keyboard.  So, what do I think so far…

Keyboard: What can you say?  It’s a BlackBerry.  A great keyboard and actually larger than the one on my 9630.  To be honest, the larger keyboard is taking a bit to get used to- but that’s a GOOD thing!

Screen:  Best screen I’ve seen on a BlackBerry to date.  Bright and crisp. Feels like ‘Gorilla Glass’, but RIM calls it ‘Hardened Glass’.  Whatever it is, it feels like the glass on my iPad.  I’m still going to put a screen protector on it, since I’m kinda geeky like that!

Touchscreen: Listen, it’s a BlackBerry- not an iPad or iPhone.  I knew that I wasn’t going to get the most responsive touchscreen ever. But the fact that I can scroll up and down, select and click around without using the trackpad is GREAT!

The question I’ve been getting hasn’t been why the 9930?  That’s because those who know me, know the reasons why I’m sticking with a BlackBerry.  The questions have been about the ‘apps’.   I don’t need a whole lot of apps on my phone…I pretty much use it for Facebook, Twitter, FourSquare, TripIt, BlackBerry Travel, BerryWeather and Google Maps. The one thing that I miss about my Droid X is the Google Navigation.  I can use VZ Navigator in a pinch, but Android’s free Google Navigation is great.

Why don’t I want more apps? Because I have an iPad (and an iPod Touch and a whole bunch of other gadgets).  If I want to Skype, FaceTime, play Angry Birds or Fruit Ninja- I’m good.  That’s why I’m perfectly happy with my BlackBerry- because it does what I need it to do and does it well.  It needs to first  and foremost: be a phone, then BBM with Staci and handle basic apps.  For everything else that needs  ‘apps’, I’ve got a better device along for the ride.  This setup works great for me!