So are any of you like me and love having the latest devices that no one else has as soon as they come out? Like only a few of our readers, I was very lucky to have the BlackBerry Bold the day it was available in stores for Rogers! Being an employee may have helped, aka having access to people with access to inventory, but still, I was quite lucky to have my contacts! Anyways, shortly after its release, the stores began getting more and more stock, quickly making my BlackBerry Bold no longer a rare item! Anyone who knows me knows this would irk me! Let’s fast forward 5 months. One of my suppliers, Ryan, of Negri Electronics (which by the way is a great company for all your cell phone needs) told me about one of his new suppliers named ColorWare Inc. I had asked them, what do they do? Basically, they take many high-end piece of technology such as phones, PDAs, computers and MP3 players and give them a professional, custom paint job! I figured I would check them out!
Their site is definitely worth a visit. A nice Flash application simulates the paint job on several BlackBerry models, with many colours to choose from. So after looking at their site, http://www.colorwarepc.com, I said to myself, “wow, their work looks great.” I figured I would extend my research to see what other work they have done. The most popular pieces of work I have seen from them is their iPhone 3G stuff. Now mind you, some people have pretty untactful taste on their colour selection, but for the most part, the selection of colours available and the quality of the workmanship that I saw on the devices looked like it had come straight out of the Apple factory in China! At this point, I wanted to give them a try. At the time, in addition to my BlackBerry Bold, I also had an iPhone 3G 16 GB in White. I figured it would be cool if my BlackBerry Bold could match that as I knew no one else with a white BlackBerry and had never even seen pics of them. Their Director of Sales and Marketing was kind enough to send me the full body housing for the BlackBerry Bold to check out and review. Below are some pics of the finished product. Click on an individual picture to enlarge it!
As you can see, the workmanship on the product is great! They use their patented X2 coating which is basically a special liquid coating that is applied once the parts are painted. This coating helps improve its scratch resistance and it also protects the paint from UV radiation to prevent yellowing… especially on white. Think of it as an invisible sunscreen for your device! As well, on the bottom of the back cover is a rubber insert which prevents the back cover from getting loose like many of you will have noticed with your OEM back covers!
Some of you may be wondering about pricing and what comes with your order. Well, first of all, when working with the BlackBerry Bold, you get your choice of options. First, you can choose to either send your product in to have the parts installed, or simply, to have the parts shipped to you for self-installation (saving you about $40). You can also opt to order the entire phone, custom painted directly from them with their own warranty! I should mention that the send-in option is only available for U.S. addresses at this point in time. This is likely due to extended costs in shipping, taxes, and import fees! When delivering the do-it-yourself kit, ColorWare is gracious enough to include a high quality T5 screwdriver in the box! As well, each part is wrapped individually to prevent them from hitting each other in shipping! As for the parts you can order, you can order one or all of the following: the frame (bezel), the back cover, the bottom (where your providers logo normally goes), and the camera bezel. If every part gets its own colour, you are looking around $150 US + shipping. Add $40 if you are performing the send-in. Subtract $10 if you want the camera bezel to match the back cover. Individually, the parts are priced as follows: the back($99), the bottom ($10), the frame ($30), and the camera ($10). I’m not sure why they price the back cover so high, but that’s the price for high quality customization, I suppose! For those who are wondering about the frame, yes, it comes with buttons preattached, the speakerphone grill attached, and the charging contacts preattached! All you have to do is install it! When ordering, you can pay by credit card, PayPal, or Google CheckOut. Parts ship out in as little as 1-2 days, but ordering the entire phone can take a little longer.
I would like to mention that I have dubbed my BlackBerry as the first “WhiteBerry Bold 9001” to hit the market! A few of my friends have claimed that I am playing the race card, but really, RIM started it, not me!
All in all, I am very pleased with the quality and the service that I have received thus far from ColorWare. While my order was in process, I figured I would test their customer service and shoot them off a couple of test emails! I received helpful responses very quickly and both of them would have resolved the issues that I was having. I am also amazed at how fast the items were shipped from the U.S. and got here in Canada. My only reservation is the price charged for the back cover, but like I stated above, there is a certain price to pay for a professional, customized paint job for your electronics!