What Does CrackBerry Mean?

CrackBerry is the nickname given to a BlackBerry device, a handheld smartphone to which users have a tendency to become addicted. The term is a combination of “crack” – or crack cocaine, which is a highly-addictive narcotic – and BlackBerry.


While the reference to the BlackBerry as a CrackBerry is often made in jest, mental health experts say that the lure of these wireless devices is real, and the behavior of those caught up in it may be similar to that of substance abusers. If weaned off their BlackBerry phones, these users may exhibit withdrawal symptoms.

Techopedia Explains CrackBerry

BlackBerry is a line of smartphones and mobile devices produced by Canadian company Research In Motion (RIM). As with rival smartphones, a BlackBerry can serve as a personal digital assistant (PDA), portable media player and mobile Web browser.

In addition to supporting email and popular social networking sites, a BlackBerry device also allows instant messaging (IM) through various IM clients, including the company’s proprietary BlackBerry Messenger service.

With BBM, the addictive nature of BlackBerry gadgets really manifests itself because BBM is built right into the phone. There is no way to take a break from receiving messages unless the device is turned off. Another thing that makes BlackBerry particularly habit-forming, compared to rival smartphones, is that push notifications for practically all types of messaging apps are sent by default. For the user, every sound or vibration can be the source of good or exciting news.

To a certain extent, this term is now outdated given the fall in popularity of Blackberries compared to other smartphones, most notably, Apple’s iPhone.


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.