Anyone who knows me, knows that I am as big a BlackBerry geek as most people will ever meet. I love the devices. I love the solution. Avis is trying to find love, or money, with the BlackBerry as well.
Avis is giving away BlackBerrys. Specifically, it's giving up to five 6710 models, each with an $85 rebate toward service activation, to travelers who rent between Jan. 1 and March 31 and who sign a one-year telco service contract.
I'm sure someone's mother said the following in the late 60's, "Free love is neither." Here is why I think this applies to the Avis offer.
There is nothing about this offer that I can't get at the cart in the mall. Avis is co-opting 2005's most successfull brand (according to the Newsmaker Brands survey) to build it's own. All the while it's clearing outdated product out of someones warehouse, and someone is collecting a respectable commission for your 1 to 5 lines of data, and probably voice, activations. All you are getting is an old product, at a retail price, with no set-up support.
If you want a BlackBerry, go to a respectable dealer, pay a respectable price for a respectable device, and get the help you will need to get it working with your e-mail and communications needs. I promise, you'll respect yourself in the morning.