Anyone who was owned a BlackBerry knows how it can make your life easier. You don’t have to fetch new e-mail messages. They just show up. And over the past couple of years RIM has done a good job making the designs sleeker and sexier (no more need for a geeky holster) while adding welcome multimedia features like music players and sharp cameras. The fact that they last at least a day longer on a charge than your typical Windows Mobile phone (based on my own tests) doesn’t hurt either. So what could be so bad about a device that delivers your messages in real-time, lets you surf the Web anywhere, keeps your schedule, and keeps you entertained between meetings with a nice game of BrickBreaker? If you’re not careful, it can take over your life.
Take the academic study done by David Vance, assistant professor of accounting at Rutgers-Camden university, and Nada Kakabadse, professor of management and business research at the UK’s University of Northampton. It found that a third of BlackBerry users show signs of addiction “similar to alcoholics.” For those scoring at home, that’s not good. So what are some telltale signs you’re a BlackBerry addict? I’ve devised a list that’s designed to poke a little fun at our compulsive behavior–I’m not afraid to admit that I’m a bit of an addict–but as Jimbo from the Simpons once said: “Inside every joke is a little kernel of truth.” Is it possible someone more literary said the same thing? Probably, but I’m too busy checking my BlackBerry to read. Top Ten Signs You’re a BlackBerry Addict 10. After a cross-country flight you wait for all your new messages to download before you alert loved ones you’re still alive. 9. You try to use BlackBerry keyboard shortcuts in Outlook. (No, you can’t hit the space bar to type “@”) 8. You think the iPhone would be much better if it only had a physical keyboard–and a trackball smackdab in the middle of the touch screen. 7. Your BlackBerry keeps you regular. Go to the bathroom without it and you’d have to “push” on your own. 6. You joined Facebook just so you could try the BlackBerry app. (No friends? The “I have a BlackBerry, I’m out of your league” group has 4,409 members.) 5. You’ve learned to drive with your knees. 4. Five or more consecutive vibrating alerts is on par with an orgasm. 3. You swap service outage stories with other “victims.” 2. You’ve completely forgotten that a blackberry is a fruit. 1. You’re reading this on your…..