It’s certainly no secret that the way things ended between T-Mobile and BlackBerry wasn’t cheerful or even amiable. From my outside perspective, they made a bad marketing move and John Chen did what he had to in order to protect his brand. Yet, back in the early days of RIM becoming the mass device of choice, T-Mobile was a huge supporter - and I've been with them since my first BlackBerry, the Pearl 8100.
I’ve had to separate my feelings for the two companies, like an in between friend of two enemies. Here I stand, pleading with each individual, "Can’t we all just get along?”
My passion for BlackBerry stems from part comfort, part compassion for the underdog, and part loyalty. On the T-Mo side, again loyalty and underdog championing, but also, they’ve treated me well and I have solid service where I need it at a price I can’t replicate with anyone else. All of these added on features: Data Stash, Unlimited Music Streaming, JUMP, No overages, etcetera, just keep adding up to a ridiculous value. So, my question is, can BlackBerry and T-Mobile reconcile? Can we be the Three Amigos again?
If rumours are to be believed - there are talks between the two companies to make my dream come true. What would it take for BlackBerry to be accepted back into T-Mobile’s arms? What would they require of BlackBerry to make sure that it never again pulls a marketing stunt like the one that started the mess in the first place?
While they are the third or fourth among the top US carriers, distantly behind AT&T and Verizon; T-Mo really isn’t hurting BlackBerry as much as they might think. You can still bring your unlocked BlackBerry to a store, and use it on their network. But the no-longer fledging network partner is poised to make some seriously strong leaps. Their towers are set to move to XLTE with just a software update as opposed to a far more costly hardware upgrade. The money they won from AT&T when the buyout failed has been used to spread the network, update 2G signal to LTE and buy low-end spectrum for wider ranges. Sometimes the late comer earns the edge and becomes the winner.
I think BlackBerry would be wise to make some considerations in order to get back into their stores and on their website. After all, they are in the same boat. Both are working on building brand image and pushing new advances and benefits. The more exposure BlackBerry 10 gets, the better. I also know many of us would appreciate getting our WiFi calling back. It was last available on 10.2.1. Plus, updating to 10.3.1 requires a workaround rather than straight OTA software update. That’s frustrating for anyone out there desiring the 10.3.1 update on their T-Mobile Z10 or Q10.
Until formal announcements, any reconciliation is just hearsay. Granted, it’s hearsay that I like to hear. I hope we can let bygones be bygones, let it be water under the bridge and any other numerous clichés that comes to mind. For the foreseeable future, I’ll be buying unlocked devices and sliding in a T-Mobile SIM card. Whether that next device is a Passport, Slider, or some other as-of-yet mentioned BlackBerry, you can be certain of two things: 1) It will be a BlackBerry. 2) It will run on T-Mobile.