RIM’s Blackberry and Apple’s iPhone series currently dominate the smartphone market.

Back when “beetles” were writing popular music, a blackberry and an apple were simply fruits to snack on when rummaging through your refrigerator. But times have changed and so has the context in which we perceive these words: what once were considered just fruits are names of two major advances in technology that have created hype amongst young adults all over the world. But what’s so special about these fancy gadgets that got our hearts racing in excitement? Let’s take a look.

BlackBerry is a line of phones designed by RIM, a Canadian telecommunications company with headquarters in Waterloo, ON. Different styles of the BlackBerry smartphones include Pearl, Bold, Curve, Tour, Torch, and Storm, with Torch being their latest release. In terms of appearance, the new BlackBerry Torch 9800 Slider phone is awfully similar to the Bold 9700; the only thing is that this phone slides. The 9800 has various features, including an 8 GB memory that can be expanded up to 32 GB with a microSD card. It also comes with an enhanced music player that displays album art and complete tracklists with the choice of either a landscape or portrait view. Another attribute of this phone is what they call the “pinch and zoom” effect, where you can use your fingers to pinch in or out depending on whether you want to zoom in or zoom out.  Torch also has a 5-megapixel camera with flash and auto-focus to allow a better picture-taking experience, and has a battery life of 5.8 hours of talking or 30 hours of music, so you can choose to do either. Aside from all that, this phone also makes Internet browsing very convenient with features like tabbed browsing and integrated social feeds from sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn.

The iPhone is a creation of Apple Inc., with four models already released to the market: the original iPhone, the 3G, the 3GS, and iPhone 4, the latest one. One of my favorite features of the iPhone 4 is the ability to video chat with other iPhones over Wi-fi. Because it comes with two cameras, front and back, and a convenient way to switch back and forth by tapping a button, video chatting is very fun and interactive. The iPhone also has the most vibrant, highest-resolution screen, making everything on the screen, pictures and text included, sharp and very clear. It also comes with a 5 -megapixel camera with LED flash, and HD video recording and editing. You can also open multiple files at the same time using the multitasking feature of the phone, which makes this phone convenient and user-friendly—like every other Apple product.

The market for smartphones is very competitive, with companies such as Apple and RIM striving to catch the eye of the average joe; this makes the process of selecting a phone tedious and complex. There was once a time when all that mattered was whether a phone could make calls, and how much it cost. Now when you step out to buy a phone there are a lot more things to consider, such as its features, the resolution of the screen, the memory, what size smart cards it carries, whether video recording  is done by a tap or a slide of the finger… the list goes on and on. After asking various people which of the two aforementioned devices they preferred, it came down to these results: A lot of the people seemed to prefer BlackBerry Torch, and the majority of them were girls. The remaining minority chose iPhone 4 because they did not seem to be satisfied with the design of the new BlackBerry. One girl stated, “It looks exactly like 9700, just touch screen and bigger-looking.” When asked whether the fact that it was a slide phone threw her off, she nodded, saying it was “slidely gross”. I personally would pick an iPhone over a BlackBerry any day, only because I find them a bit overrated and I don’t see the appeal in a phone that looks like a gigantic calculator. Either way, different people are attracted to different kinds of phones, so which phone is objectively “better” is out of the question.