BlackBerry PlayBook Tablets are the hot commodity for 2011, and RIM has jumped into the game with the BlackBerry PlayBook. This attractive 7" tablet runs their new QNX-powered OS with UI inspirations from The Astonishing Tribe whom RIM bought. Hardware design and materials are top notch, the touch screen is among the best in tablets and the user experience is delightful even if ripped off from webOS. But apps are a weak point on this brand new platform, and software junkies won't be thrilled. The PlayBook has WiFi 802.11n, Bluetooth and a GPS that works with Bing Maps. You can use your smartphone's WiFi tethering to get online as well or tether to a BlackBerry smartphone using BlackBerry Bridge. This release version tablet leaves us with mixed feelings, but we can't seem to put it down.
BlackBerry Smartphone Reviews
BlackBerry Z10The all new BlackBerry OS 10 is here on RIM's first new phone in quite some time. The BlackBerry Z10 is a slab touchscreen smartphone with a 4.2" IPS screen running at 1280 x 768. It has a removable battery and microSD card slot, an increasingly rare set of features. The phone runs on a 1.5GHz dual core Qualcomm Snapdragon CPU with a gig of RAM and 16 gigs of storage. It has a 2MP front camera and rear 8MP camera with LED flash and backside illuminiated sensor. The Z10 is fast, fun and stable: BlackBerry is off to a good start.
AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon and unlocked GSM
BlackBerry Torch 9850RIM's all new full touchscreen phone runs BlackBerry OS 7 on the same 1.2GHz CPU as the Bold 9930 and Torch 9810. It has a 3.7", 800 x 480 capacitive multi-touch display that's very sharp and bright. There's no hardware keyboard here, but the virtual one is pretty decent, and the phone is fast. It has a 5 megapixel autofocus camera, WiFi, Bluetooth and a GPS. It's a world phone with a GSM SIM card slot.
Sprint and Verizon
BlackBerry Bold 9900It's been quite some time since RIM introduced a new BlackBerry smartphone. Now we've got three new touchscreen 'Berries launching together. In this review we look at T-Mobile version of the Bold 9900. This is definitely RIM's best BlackBerry yet, with a perfect keyboard, capacitive touch screen, 1.2GHz CPU and plenty of RAM. The Bold 9900 has 4G HSPA+ and a much improved web browser with a more social BBM.
BlackBerry Bold 9930It's been quite some time since RIM introduced a new BlackBerry smartphone. Now we've got three new touchscreen 'Berries launching together. In this review we look at Verizon Wireless' version of the Bold 9900, that goes under the 9930 heading to indicate it's the CDMA version of the latest Bold. This is definitely RIM's best BlackBerry yet, with a perfect keyboard, capacitive touch screen, 1.2GHz CPU and plenty of RAM. The Bold 9930 has a 5 megapixel camera that can shoot 720p video, a much improved web browser and a more social BBM.
Verizon and Sprint
BlackBerry Torch 9810 The Torch 9810 is AT&T's second generation Torch with a much faster CPU, a higher resolution display and the new BlackBerry 7 OS. The smartphone has a very solid slider, excellent build quality and a very sharp VGA capacitive touch screen. Other goodies include a much improved web browser, BBM 6 with new social integration, a better camera that can shoot 720p video and HSPA+ 4G. The Torch keeps up with the big boys thanks to its 1.2GHz CPU, 768 megs of RAM and 8 gigs of internal storage. It's a Torch on steroids.
BlackBerry StyleRIM's first flip phone with a full QWERTY keyboard is aptly named. This is one stylish looking clamshell phone with rich textures and great looks. Inside we've got BlackBerry OS 6 which works well on non-touch screen phones like the Style. It's modern, more intuitive and reasonably fast. The new web browser brings BlackBerry into modern times and the sharp inner display is great for browsing and video playback. The Style has a 528MHz CPU, 512 megs of RAM and the usual trio of WiFi, Bluetooth and a GPS.
BlackBerry Curve 3G 9330 Thanks to Verizon's bargain pricing, the latest Curve is the most affordable BlackBerry smartphone at introduction. That's not to say it's cheesy, in fact the design and materials are the best yet on the entry level Curve line. The Curve 3G is upgradable to BlackBerry OS 6, and that's its most exciting feature. Unfortunately, it still ships with OS 5, but we're hoping the upgrade will be out soon. In fact, we upgraded our phone with a pre-release versionof OS 6 for the Curve 3G and we liked what we saw. our review includes a video review of the Curve 3G running OS 6 and a video with OS 5. The Curve has 3G EV-DO Rev. A, a 2 megapixel camera, QVGA display, GPS, Bluetooth, WiFi and RIM's usual excellent QWERTY keyboard.
BlackBerry Torch 9800RIM's latest BlackBerry dares to be different, and that's a good thing. The Torch 9800 has both a capacitive touch screen and a slide-out QWERTY keyboard. There's a new OS to go with that multi-touch display and it brings the BlackBerry into the 21st century. It's intuitive, enjoyable and quite powerful, yet veteran BlackBerry users won't find it unfamiliar. The Torch has a new Webkit web browser, a 3.2" display, the usual excellent hardware keyboard, push email galore and a heap of multimedia. Other amenities include a 5 megapixel camera, 4 gigs of storage, a GPS, WiFi and Bluetooth. The Torch is certainly good enough to keep Berry addicts loyal, but is it enough fight off Android and iOS?
BlackBerry Bold 9650The Bold 9650 replaces the BlackBerry Tour as Sprint and Verizon's high end non-touch screen model with world roaming. The Bold closely resembles its GSM sibling the Bold 9700 and it's quite compact. It has EV-DO 3G for fast data, GSM roaming capabilities, a 480 x 360 display, an optical trackpad rather than a trackball, GPS and WiFi too. We take a look at the Sprint version for this review.
Verizon and Sprint
BlackBerry Curve 8530The BlackBerry Curve 8530 is the CDMA counterpart to the GSM BlackBerry Curve 8520 we reviewed a few months back. The Curve 8530 is available on both Verizon and Sprint, and we look at the Verizon version in our review. The BlackBerry 8530 is the new entry level Curve with a rugged body, RIM's new optical trackpad that replaces the trackball and multimedia controls up top. It runs OS 5 and has WiFi, Bluetooth with a full set of profiles, 3G EV-DO Rev. 0, an SDHC microSD card slot and a 3.5mm stereo jack. Other features include a QVGA display, the new VZ Navigator version 5 and V Cast support.
Verizon and Sprint
BlackBerry Bold 9700The baby Bold is here for those of you who found the original BlackBerry Bold 9000 too large and heavy. The Bold 9700 is narrower and lighter, while sporting the same impressive build quality as the 9000 (OK, it's a tiny bit less luxurious). It features an even higher resolution display than the first Bold, WiFi with WiFi calling on the T-Mobile version, a GPS, 3.2 megapixel camera and Bluetooth. This is the first 3G BlackBerry on T-Mobile. The 9700 is available on both T-Mobile and AT&T in the US.
T-Mobile and AT&T
BlackBerry Storm2RIM's second generation touch screen BlackBerry is a go. The Storm2 does most things better than the first gen Storm thanks to a redesigned SurePress capacitive touch screen (yes, it still moves for better or worse), a new OS and more memory. The Storm2 is fast, stable and easy to use, though QWERTY addicts will likely do better with a traditional BlackBerry. The Storm2 is exclusive to Verizon in the US and it has EV-DO Rev. A, world GSM roaming, WiFi, Bluetooth and a GPS.
BlackBerry TourThe BlackBerry Tour is RIM's new flagship CDMA phone for Sprint and Verizon Wireless. If you crossed the BlackBerry Bold with the Curve 8900, you'd have the Tour which has the 8900's fluid lines and the Bold's touch of class and larger presence. The BlackBerry Tour 9630 has a 480 x 360 pixel display, a 528MHz CPU, EVDO Rev. A for fast wireless data and a SIM card slot for GSM world roaming outside the US. Other high end features include a 3.2 megapixel autofocus camera, Bluetooth with A2DP, and a very capable media player. Alas, there's no WiFi. We take a look at both the Sprint and Verizon models in this review.
Sprint and Verizon
BlackBerry Curve 8520RIM evolves their BlackBerry hardware slowly-- with millions of Crackberry addicts, they don't want to mess with a good thing. And we have to say their trackpad that replaces the beloved BlackBerry trackball is simply amazing. Likewise, the top media playback controls are cool and useful. Beyond those, the Curve 8520 is a basic 'Berry for T-Mobile with EDGE, UMA calling over WiFi, a QVGA display and a 2 megapixel camera.
T-Mobile and AT&T
BlackBerry Curve 8900 Somehow, RIM almost always finds a way to pluck our heartstrings with tweaks and improvements that keep the BlackBerry line exciting and competitive. The BlackBerry 8900, the newest entry in the Curve line (some folks call it the "Curve 2") remakes the Curve into an attractive and full-featured smartphone. We call it Bold Junior since it sports similar looks and features like GPS, WiFi, a high resolution display along with RIM's signature QWERTY keyboard. The Curve 8900 is smaller than the Bold and is currently offered by T-Mobile and AT&T in the US. Other features include UMA WiFi calling (T-Mobile version) and a 3.2 megapixel autofocus camera.
BlackBerry StormAfter months of hype and teasing, the first touch screen BlackBerry smartphone is finally here. Exclusive to Verizon, the Storm features a unique moving touch screen that clicks when you press down to provide tactile feedback when typing, clicking web links, selecting icons and more. The Storm is a CDMA phone with EVDO rev. A for fast data and it has a GSM SIM card slot for overseas travel. The BlackBerry features a wonderful 480 x 360 display, an accelerometer, GPS with VZ Navigator, Bluetooth 2.0 with stereo support and a 3.2 megapixel autofocus camera.
BlackBerry Bold RIM's top of the line traditional BlackBerry has a fantastic 480 x 320 pixel color display that looks so good it's unreal. We call the Bold 9000 for AT&T "traditional" because it keeps the standard QWERTY hardware keyboard and non-touch screen display that the upcoming BlackBerry Storm on Verizon sets aside. The Bold is the first 3G HSDPA BlackBerry, and it has WiFi, Bluetooth and a GPS too. Throw in Bluetooth stereo A2DP, a 3.5mm stereo headset jack, 2MP camera, and a great media player and an SDHC microSD card slot and you've got some serious entertainment possibilities as well. A beautiful phone, though somewhat large and particularly wide; the Bold is nonetheless a looker. Editor's
BlackBerry Curve 8330The CDMA version of the Curve is finally here for both Sprint and Verizon. We cover both versions in this review, but there's no hardware difference other than color. The only differentiator is the software each carrier adds. The Curve 8330 has a built-in GPS, 2 megapixel camera with flash (improved over the GSM Curve) and it can shoot video too. The Sprint version has BlackBerry Maps and Sprint TV (Sprint Navigation is there too), while the Verizon version has VZ Navigator but no V Cast or BlackBerry Maps. Both feature that lovable BlackBerry QWERTY keyboard and excellent push email plus a music player with stereo Bluetooth A2DP support and a video player for locally stored clips.
Verizon and Sprint
BlackBerry Pearl 8120Think of it as "Pearl 2.0". The new Pearl is small, super-light and sexy just like the original Pearl. The 8120, available on AT&T and T-Mobile adds several tweaks and improvements including WiFi, an easily accessible microSD card that's compatible with SDHC cards, a 2 megapixel camera that takes video and still shots, improved text prediction and a better web browser. Like all BlackBerry smartphones, the pearl 8120 does push email with aplomb and it features a SureType keyboard where two letters share a key. It's a quad band world GSM world phone with EDGE for data. The T-Mobile version supports their HotSpot @Home service.
AT&T and T-Mobile
BlackBerry Curve 8320 Yes, T-Mobile now has the ever-popular Curve, with a wonderful addition: WiFi. Not just WiFi for web browsing and email but for voice calls over WiFi. T-Mobile's Hotspot@Home service makes its appearance on the 8320 and for $10/month at current pricing, you can make unlimited domestic calls over WiFi without using your plan minutes or using a separate application on the phone-- nice! The BlackBerry 8320 features RIM's easy to use QWERTY keyboard, quad band EDGE, Bluetooth with support for stereo Bluetooth headsets and it has a capable media player for music and video. The 2MP camera takes decent shots but the real stars are excellent voice quality, the usual BlackBerry push email experience and UMA (voice calls over WiFi using your cell number).
BlackBerry Curve 8300As the name suggests, the Curve isn't an angular beast like the 8800. It feels great in the hand, and has a more traditional BlackBerry keyboard with rounded keys that have plenty of separation. The 8300 is available on AT&T in the US, and it features a full QWERTY keyboard, a bright and colorful QVGA display, 2 megapixel camera, Bluetooth and the usual push email goodness along with a good web browser.
BlackBerry 8830Now Verizon Wireless and Sprint customers can take their love affair with push email overseas. The BlackBerry 8830 works on Verizon's CDMA network in the US (on Sprint's network for the Sprint version) and in Europe and Asia on GSM networks for both voice and data. Just add Verizon's Global service, insert their SIM and hit the runway. For the Sprint use any GSM SIM. The 8830, looks feels and sounds much like its GSM-only near twin, the BlackBerry 8800. It has a large landscape color display, full QWERTY keyboard, Bluetooth 2.0 and a MicroSD card slot. Like recent hip BBs, the 8830 even has a music and video player, though no camera, so it's corporate-safe.
Verizon and Sprint
BlackBerry 8800The wide brother to the sexy and successful BlackBerry Pearl sports the same great looks and slim goodness in a wider package that accommodates a full QWERTY keyboard rather than the Pearl's share-a-key design. Like the Pearl it has a vibrant display, newfound multimedia capabilities (it plays music and video), a trackball, Bluetooth and EDGE. The 8800 has an internal GPS and it's a quad band GSM world phone that's currently offered by AT &T (Cingular) in the US.
T-Mobile and AT&T
BlackBerry PearlWant BlackBerry push email but hate the looks and bulk? Well, RIM now offers one of the smallest and sexiest phones on the market: the Pearl 8100. This phone aims to compete feature-wise with MS Smartphone, Palm and Nokia offerings as it brings multimedia to the BlackBerry platform. And it competes with the sleekest of fashion phones in the looks department. The Pearl does email alright, but it also has a 1.3MP camera, MP3 player, video player and more.
All US carriers
BlackBerry 7130eThose of you who like the BlackBerry 7100 series more phone-like design will be happy to hear it's now available with 3G speeds on Sprint's EVDO network. The 7130e has RIM's usual excellent push email, Bluetooth, tethering support over USB, a bright color display and the SureType thumb keyboard which combines two letters on a key.
BlackBerry 8700gThe latest BlackBerry sports a pleasant and more natural color display than the 7290, and is the first to run on an Intel XScale processor which really gives this messaging device a shot in the arm. It has EDGE for fast data connections, the usual excellent BlackBerry thumb keyboard and Bluetooth 2.0 so you need not hold this relatively blocky device to your head when making calls.
7290 The quintessential
messaging machine with both PDA and
phone features gets Bluetooth and a quad band GSM radio
for 2005. The Blackberry has a 240 x 160 color display,
integrated thumb keyboard and best of all, you need not
hold it to your head to have a conversation thanks to integrated
Bluetooth. Both Cingular and T-Mobile offer the 7290 in
the US, and it works on all GSM bands
used across the world.
7280 The BlackBerry
is the epitome of wireless messaging thanks to its rich
messaging tools and excellent thumb keyboard. Not only
that, current BlackBerry models are also mobile phones
that allow you to pay for one plan that covers both voice
and data. The 7200 series is available from a variety of
US GMS providers, and we take a look at the 7280 which
runs on the AT&T Wireless network. The 7200 series
features a color display, GSM/GPRS connectivity, push email
and PIM applications. A CDMA version is forthcoming.