The Problem with SmartPhones

iPhoneThe iPhone is cool. The iPhone is slick. The iPhone is neat. Blackberrys (Blackberries?) are way awesome, too. So is the rarely-mentioned-but-just-as-awesome Motorola Q9.

These are devices that are beyond cell phones. They’re “SmartPhones.” They are what you get when you combine a PDA with a phone. A teensy computer that happens to be able to place and receive phone calls and text messages.

When it comes to user experiences I find the iPhone experience to be the best if what I want to do is locate … stuff … and use it. If, however, I want to type something — a message, a phone number, a URL — then the iPhone sucks and the Blackberry/MotoQ families of devices reign supreme.

Never mind all that though. The real problem with SmartPhones is that when you want to use them as phones, unless you have a Bluetoothâ„¢ headset, you end up holding a calculator-sized box up to your ear, getting ear grease all over the gorgeous display or embedded in the chicklet-sized keyboard.

Sure, sure, the original cellphones were monsterous bricks but they, well, kind of looked like phones. You didn’t think, as you were holding those blocks up to your head, “Hey, I’m sticking a calculator against my head!” You weren’t constantly wiping the ear goo off of it. It was a phone! It’s supposed to have grease and wax on it!

I’m looking forward to the day they can implant a chip inside my head to do the phone call part of it so’s I can play Bubbletâ„¢ or Spider Solitaire on my weensy PDA while I chat.