Grappling with the mobile email monster

Updated on August 22, 2008

Most people I know in business have a Blackberry. And it is usually a Blackberry, not another smartphone brand, that people use to keep on top of things like email when they’re out and about.

For years, I’ve been a permanent resistor to the notion of being at the beck and call of email no matter where you are, and no matter when you are.

That’s how I’ve always looked at it – the mobile email monster craves your attention 24/7.

Yet I’ve come to accept a certain reality in business, which is that you can’t really afford to be disconnected when you’re mobile. So I’m going to experiment with such a smartphone over the next few weeks.

But it’s not a Blackberry.

Instead, thanks to the folks at WOM World/Nokia, I’ll be using a Nokia E71, the mobile device from Nokia you see pictured here (click the image for a larger view) that was launched in June, and which I think is the prime competitor to Blackberry, notably the Blackberry Bold.

Unlike other mobile devices from 3 and O2 I’ve been testing in recent months, where the devices come ready-to-go with SIM cards and accounts, I’ll be using the E71 on my own dime, so to speak.

So I’ll slip my Vodafone SIM card into it and configure it for my own email, etc.

That means I’ll be largely forsaking my Nokia N95 8GB while I use the E71. Not sure how I’ll manage – and how soon the withdrawal symptoms will start – in switching a superb multimedia device to a business-focused one.

And will it persuade me to change my views about the mobile email monster?

We’ll see. Review to come on Next, my tech blog.

Neville Hobson

Social Strategist, Communicator, Writer, and Podcaster with a curiosity for tech and how people use it. Believer in an Internet for everyone. Early adopter (and leaver) and experimenter with social media. Occasional test pilot of shiny new objects. Avid tea drinker.

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