Pearl's Paradise

"Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled teams yearning to breath free…"

April 30, 2010
by Steve Pearl

Marketing 101 – How Verizon Botched the Droid Incredible Launch

For all the advance hype surrounding the new HTC Droid Incredible on the Verizon network, you wouldn't have known it was the "next big thing" by the way it was actually promoted and launched.  Verizon could learn a thing or two from Apple/AT&T about how to hype, market, and launch a shiny new technology toy that everyone really should want.

About a week ago I was visiting the Verizon Wireless corporate store in Montgomeryville, PA.  Though there are two corporate stores closer to our offices, it's been my experience that the one in Montgomeryville is the creme de la creme, the place all the top reps land.  These folks know their stuff, whether it's in-depth knowlege of the equipment itself or the finer points of manipulating plans and discounts to meet the needs of the customer.

So when one of the sales reps told me, more than a week before the official launch date, "You wanna see the Droid Incredible?  I have one back in the shop…", I jumped at the chance.  It was clear to me that the HTC Droid Incredible finally fulfilled the hope many of us had for the Motorola Droid when it launched last week.  It certainly bested the lame, AT&T-tethered, Motorola Backflip, which AT&T heavily promoted for months leading up to its launch.  (The Backflip is so strange, so ergonomically off-putting, most of us in the geek community have taken to calling it the "Motorola Faceplant.")

Click to continue reading “Marketing 101 – How Verizon Botched the Droid Incredible Launch”

April 30, 2010
by Steve Pearl

Droid Incredible Update: “Houston, we have a problem…”

After hammering on the Droid Incredible for the better part of an evening I have come to a conclusion.

It's incredible!

As a multi-year iPhone user I can safely say that the HTC Droid Incredible is finally an iPhone killer, a mobile computing platform and phone equally appealing to both novice and power-user alike.  Though I can't speak to the one, central draw for most iPhone users – iPod functionality and integration with iTunes – on every other count the phone is at least the equal, if not the superior to Apple's flagship.  (I am the a-characteristic iPhone user.  I bought it more for the raw computing power and computer-like applications than for its ability to rock my world with deep cuts off the Doobie Brothers Greatest Hits compilation.)

The Droid Incredible, though, has an Achilles heel.  I didn't notice it at first, but after burning about 60 minutes of cell time hither and yon across the countryside, up the PA turnpike and down suburban side streets, I became keenly aware of the flaw.

The HTC Droid Incredible is incredibly radio deaf.

Click to continue reading “Droid Incredible Update: “Houston, we have a problem…””

April 29, 2010
by Steve Pearl

The Steve-O Ego: Jobs Pontificates Regarding “Flash”

I am not sure some days whether I love Steve Jobs for his singularity of vision about what constitutes computing excellence, loathe his arrogance toward any notion of opening the Apple eco-system to outside developers, or land somewhere in the resigned middle, where love and loathe live in equal proportion.  As an avid Apple user, I can't deny the sheer elegance of his team's products.  You can see from previous postings that I have at least as much Apple gear, if not more, than I have Windows. In fact, I honestly can't remember the last time I regularly used a Windows-based computer.

So why am I hammering hard on a new Droid Incredible that I just picked up from the Verizon Store this morning in a pre-launch coup?  Why, if Apple equipment and OS/X is so stellar would I even remotely consider dumping my beloved iPhone in favor of the Android phone du-jour?

'Cuz Jobsy isn't Jesus and the iPhone doesn't walk on water.

Click to continue reading “The Steve-O Ego: Jobs Pontificates Regarding “Flash””

April 28, 2010
by Steve Pearl

Hands-On with the Verizon Droid Incredible – iPhone Killer or Android Also-Ran?

This iPhone Owner Wants a Better Phone on a Better Network

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If you follow along at home, you know I regularly use Apple equipment. It doesn't matter whether it's professionally or personally, I just find Apple gear to be more stable, better performing, and a better long-range value. I still have a five-year-old, Intel Core Duo Apple Mac laptop in the stable, purring along nicely with performance that still makes some of today's Windows 7 machines look stodgy.

So it's no surprise that for the past couple of years the phone adorning my hip holster has been some variation of an Apple iPhone. (First 2G, then 3G, then 3GS.)  Of course that's a "hacked" iPhone, friends. Apple's base operating system for the iPhone is artificially crippled by Steve Jobs' insistence that every aspect of the iPhone eco-system be lorded over by the Cupertino Cabal. As a mobile computing platform it's close to fantastic.  As a phone on AT&T's network, though, it's crippleware.

Therein lies a narrowing window of opportunity for Verizon.

Click to continue reading “Hands-On with the Verizon Droid Incredible – iPhone Killer or Android Also-Ran?”

April 20, 2010
by Steve Pearl

Analysis: Canon T2i DSLR – Time to Dump the Camcorder

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Have you seen it yet?  If you're a die-hard amateur photographer, you have probably been waiting for it for a long, long time.  The Canon T2i has hit store shelves and it is, with a few caveats, everything you have been waiting for in a true, video-capable Digital SLR (or "DSLR").  I won't bore you with all the technical specifications and photography tests.  Visit my favorite photog site, DPReview, for the full nuts-n-bolts review.

No, this quick look at the T2i is all about one question.

Is it time to dump your Digicam?

Is the T2i a solid enough DSLR performer to merit purchase by the avid amateur photographer AND is it a worthy enough video machine to merit carrying just one camera to also capture video?

The answer is a qualified, though just-barely qualified, "yes" to both questions.

Click to continue reading “Analysis: Canon T2i DSLR – Time to Dump the Camcorder”

April 9, 2010
by Steve Pearl
1 Comment

First Impressions: iPad Hits, Jobs Whiffs

Succumbing to The Sickness

Every now and again I succumb to the intractable grip of "BIN" syndrome.  I suspect many of you also fall prey to BIN's ravages, though you probably wouldn't admit it in polite company.  The symptoms are obvious, the fallout predictable.

Your palms sweat.

Your heart races.

You suddenly find yourself compelled by an irresistible urge to slide a rectangular, stamped, piece of plastic across a commercial-grade Formica counter top.

"BIN" is short for "Buy It Now" syndrome and the Apple iPad is merely the latest Machiavellian scheme by Steve Jobs and company to spread the BIN sickness to a broader swath of humanity.

Click to continue reading “First Impressions: iPad Hits, Jobs Whiffs”

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