Is This the New BlackBerry?

Give Peek credit. Shortly after I wrote that the company would find it tough to create a market for its dedicated Twitter device, a representative wrote to ask if I'd try it and review it. I accepted.

Here's what I've learned in my week or so of testing:

  • The TwitterPeek is a well-designed device that has everything you'd expect.
  • Using TweetDeck on my iPhone is faster, richer, and more intuitive.

In other words, as much as I like this device, I can't see anyone who has used a smartphone opting for the TwitterPeek. Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL  ) , Research In Motion (Nasdaq: RIMM  ) , Palm (Nasdaq: PALM  ) , Nokia (NYSE: NOK  ) , and the many models now using Google's (Nasdaq: GOOG  ) Android mobile operating system all tweet. They're also built to run thousands of other software applications.

The TwitterPeek isn't just limited in scope; compared to my iPhone, it's also slow, typically lagging three to four minutes behind in delivering tweets. To be fair, this could be due to the sometimes-mediocre network reception at my home office. On the other hand, TwitterPeek was far more reliable than my typical AT&T (NYSE: T  ) service. I count the device's radio as one of its many strengths.

Shortcuts are another strength. Using a variety of keyboard combos, the TwitterPeek can organize tweets, retweet, reply to followers, or fast-forward through to the most recent posts. A side-mounted scroll wheel also aids navigation. In all, I'd say the TwitterPeek boasts a pretty smart design.

What I fear is the niche. ARM Holdings (Nasdaq: ARMH  ) says there will be 500 million smartphones on the market in five years, up from 200 million in 2009. The TwitterPeek is trying to catch the curl of that tidal wave. I'm not seeing it.

But that could also be because I've never used a BlackBerry, the most famous and most effective one-off device in telecom history. TwitterPeek's look and feel is eerily similar to that of RIM's boxy, keyboard-laden breakthrough.

Which, ironically, brings us full circle. Formerly a one-off device, the BlackBerry is now a smartphone. The TwitterPeek seems to me unlikely to cross the same bridge. That's why, even after trying and liking it, I still question the device's future.

But that's also just my take. Now it's your turn to weigh in. Is a smartphone in your future, or are one-off devices such as the TwitterPeek more your style? Let us know by voting in the poll below. You can also sound off using the comments box at the bottom.

Apple is a Motley Fool Stock Advisor selection. Nokia is a Motley Fool Inside Value pick. Google is a Motley Fool Rule Breakers recommendation. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

Fool contributor Tim Beyers had stock and options positions in Apple and a stock position in Google at the time of publication. Check out Tim's portfolio holdings and Foolish writings, or connect with him on Twitter as @milehighfool. The Motley Fool is also on Twitter as @TheMotleyFool. The Fool's disclosure policy, after 15 years, still hasn't peaked.


Read/Post Comments (0) | Recommend This Article (6)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

Be the first one to comment on this article.

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 1051730, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 9/17/2014 12:05:57 AM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...


Advertisement