BlackBerry Vs iPhone – Which Do Bands Prefer?

According to a new ad campaign, “BlackBerry Loves U2.”

Now hold on, wasn’t Bono the face of hated rivals Apple iTunes? Yes he was, and now U2 have done the impossible by switching loyalties. Not in music history has a band (or should I say brand) defected to a rival sponsor like this. But if anyone can do it, U2 can.

The band are releasing a ‘mobile album’ with BlackBerry. With it, you can listen to the new album, read news from, and watch music videos.

Oh, and users (sorry, fans) will be able to share video clips from U2 concerts, using a digital map that will let you pick among BlackBerry-toting audience members with different stage angles.

Now here’s a thought, instead of filming the concert, or producing your own digital show by selecting from 187 other nosebleed seat viewpoints, why not put your BlackBerry into your pocket and enjoy the gig?

Regardless, it appears there’s a definitive split in the Indie world between BlackBerry Boys and iPhoners, with more rockers choosing the former.

On a trawl through after-gig photos and a straw poll of NME journalists, I could only find Caroline Glasvegas owning the 3G handset, Lily Allen, and The Streets – you can see Mike Skinner’s on his Twitpics.

A greater number favour the more ‘businessy‘ Berry. Geekier electro types, such as Frankmusik, opt for the BlackBerry. The Others’ Dominic Masters responds to fan’s emails via the device, and, like Barack Obama, Mark Ronson has been spotted bashing at its ‘qwerty’ keyboard.

The trend is clear to see. Check out this email I got from a record company insider: “Lethal Bizzle is a Blackberry man. All of Fightstar are iPhone nuts. Jamie Cullum loves his iPhone. Buckcherry love their iPhones, Motley Crue love their Blackberrys.”

I’ve got both. Not because I’m a drug dealer, but because I’ve got a ‘work BlackBerry’ and I also signed up with O2 simply to snag myself an iPhone. Ignoring the 16GB of music you can cram onto the Apple device, I can tell you that the BlackBerry’s battery outlasts the iPhone by, er, loads, and its web application shows Apple’s Safari a clean pair of heels.

Yet Apple’s ‘phone feels like it’s more Indie, with a dedicated iTunes festival application, and apps for fans of bands like Kraftwerk and even Fightstar. Comments on some geek blogs have suggested that with the signing of U2, BlackBerry are aping Apple’s business model. And with the U2 ‘mobile album’ that’s never been more obvious.

Two years ago, before Lily Allen even bought an iPhone, she criticized iTunes saying, “They won’t advertise your album unless you give them extra material.” Now it seems you’ll get more ‘extras’ when you purchase music on the BlackBerry. Perhaps the next Horrors album will come with a free app showing you how to backcomb your hair.