I have a friend that is in the market for a new smartphone. She’s heard me talk about how great the BlackBerry is many, many times, however, while shopping for a new device, she called me and asked me a simple question that I could not give a simple answer to.

Less Email, What is the BlackBerry really good at?

When she first asked me this question, believe it or not, I was at a loss for words. When I finally did answer, you wouldn’t believe what I said.

After I thought about all the things that a BlackBerry is really good at besides sending and receiving email the only good answer I came up with was “Not Much.”

As a mobile phone, the BlackBerry is average at best. Many models still have volume problems and many standard mobile phone features that you would find on most $30 devices, like voice command dialing, are not available on the BlackBerry, let alone mobile phone features that you would expect to find on devices upwards of $200.

As an address book I will give you that the one on the BlackBerry is better than the ones that you will find on most regular mobile phones, however, I have yet to see a worse implementation of the address book on any smart phone or PDA than what you get on the BlackBerry. Lets just say that compared to what you get on the Windows Mobile is far superior.

To make a long story short, the Calendar and the Tasks are quite limited so the BlackBerry is not that great of a PIM either. The newer models don’t even get that great of battery life so that is no longer even a plus. At the end of the day, the BlackBerry is just average when you take email out of the equation.

As big of a BlackBerry fan that I am, I had to recommend that my friend go with something other than a BlackBerry knowing that email wouldn’t even make the top 5 list of what she would use the device for.