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BlackBerry addicts mull life without device

New York, Jan. 25 (Reuters): Life without a “BlackBerry'” Hard-core users of the wireless portable e-mail devices are shuddering to think about a possible future without the gadgets they love, hate and aren’t sure they can live without.

The chance of a BlackBerry-less future loomed more vividly this week when the US Supreme Court refused to review a major patent infringement ruling against maker Research In Motion Ltd.

Now, a federal judge could issue an injunction to block RIM’s US business. Many observers, however, suspect RIM may develop alternative technology or perhaps pay what some say could be as much as a billion dollars to settle with patent-holding company NTP Inc.

“I’m addicted. They should pay the billion dollars and get it over with,” BlackBerry user and insurance company executive Jim Long said in Manhattan. So pervasive is the Blackberry culture, with some 3.65 million customers, that the device is nicknamed the “Crackberry” for its addictive allure.

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