Good physical QWERTY keyboard
The BlackBerry Q10 is every inch a BlackBerry. It has the traditional BB form-factor and, more importantly - the physical QWERTY keyboard that's coveted by so many BlackBerry fans. This, however, is a device that's exclusively targeted at existing BlackBerry users, we don't think the Q10 is capable of attracting new ones.
As a niche smartphone, the BlackBerry Q10 is a pretty decent performer. It can do anything a diehard BlackBerry user would want it to do and more.
Full physical keyboard, Impressive web speeds
Without doubt the BlackBerry Q10 is the best QWERTY keyboard smartphone on the market, which is certainly a bold claim - until you consider, what other high-end smartphones are sporting a full-on keyboard these days? Exactly.
It may be the best, but it's the best of one. People will buy the Q10 for its QWERTY keyboard, it's a business tool and in that arena it excels.
Easy phone to appreciate
In terms of where the market is heading and where BlackBerry want to be, we cannot help the thought that they'd rather have the Z10, and its successors, up there with the best than keep the messenger concept on life support. On the other hand, it's QWERTY messengers that have shaped the company's identity. It's a tough one, finding the right balance between what the market wants and respect of tradition.
Provide snappy performance for touches
BlackBerry's Q10 is filled with many creative features but its ultimate success will come down to one basic question: Do you want a qwerty device? I don't think the era of the qwerty is over, since I have met users who prefer a physical keyboard. But they are in the definite minority.
Excellent hardware QWERTY keyboard, long battery life
The BlackBerry Q10 brings the traditional BlackBerry smartphone into the modern age. I suspect it's enough to make BlackBerry loyalists happy, though I doubt iPhone and Android users will flock to it (that was the BlackBerry Z10's job). It's fast, stable, and secure and it maintains enough of the UI conventions of older BlackBerry smartphones to make existing BlackBerry owners feel a bit less lost.
Design, improved camera, some nice UI features
In summary, we like the BlackBerry Q10 because it embodies those things that we love best about BlackBerry. We like the design and the keyboard experience, but beyond that communication experience, there's little that's unique and BB10 is still some way behind rival offerings.
Good physical keyboard
Nevertheless, folks who absolutely must have a hardware keyboard should be happy with a BlackBerry Q5. Chances are they won't be able to find a better alternative anyway, other than the pricier BlackBerry Q10. Those who don't need one, on the other hand, better look elsewhere. The HTC Windows Phone 8X and the Nokia Lumia 720, for example, are both good, compact phones that also runs a platform as fluid and responsive as BB10.
Fast web browser, HD screen
The BlackBerry Q5 is one for the aficionados who can't afford, or refuse to splash cash on the highly priced Q10, with the solid BlackBerry typing experience at the heart of everything it does.
Without knowing the price it's difficult to say how it will stand up against other handsets, but anyone who isn't a BlackBerry fan and is in the market for a reasonably priced smartphone probably won't be taken with the Q5.
Cheap BlackBerry 10 phone with keyboard is a mixed bag
It's a mixed bag when it comes to the BlackBerry Q5. It's cheaper than both the BlackBerry Q10 and Z10 and a lot of its hardware specs are better than we expected. However, build quality isn't inspiring and while BlackBerry 10 is smooth with good features, a shortage of apps remains a downfall.
Poor camera, small screen
If you're a legacy user of BlackBerry and are itching to get a slice of BlackBerry 10 without committing a huge slice of money, then the Q5 won't disappoint. If you're just in the market for an affordable and functional smartphone though, there's plenty of other options that offer more for less.
Most affordable route to BB10
All these things, the slightly sluggish performance, the generic design and a price that's not all that compelling make the BlackBerry Q5 a smartphone that's difficult to get excited about. It's not without merit, but it doesn't feel like the cheap and cheerful Curve replacement we want it to be.
Boasts a full QWERTY keyboard
With two high-end devices already out it makes sense that BlackBerry would return to its established emerging markets and make a phone that would be deemed "affordable".
What will be most interesting however is seeing just how affordable it really is, sporting many of the same specs as the Q10 many users could be in for a shock when BlackBerry does finally release pricing information.
Good-old QWERTY keypad, Offers both touchscreen and trackpad
The sturdy build and the iconic QWERTY keypad are the high-point of the 9720. On the other hand, now that BBM is available on Android and iOS platforms, there's one less reason for users to stick with the Canadian manufacturer. Furthermore, its BIS dependability, paltry internal storage, poor camera, and dated software are major deal breakers.
In short, for Rs 15,000, the phone isn't a major update over the relatively-cheaper 9320, save for the touchscreen.
Poor quality display
In the greater scheme of things, $50 might seem like a dandy deal for the Curve 9315, but when the platform experience is outdated, combined with the handset's cheap feel, it doesn't make it a prized possession against other comparable smartphones. At this point folks, unless you're firmly in love with the old platform, you're better off waiting for RIM's next-generation BlackBerry OS 10 devices.
What we like about the BlackBerry Curve 9320 is that it's honest. It's not trying to be better than it is and is quite happy to portray itself as a budget smartphone with a few little extras. And for the people it's aimed at, those who want a phone that makes calls, sends texts/emails and has a good battery, it comes up trumps. Web browsers and cameras are nice to have, but won't swing a sale here. So on that basis, it gets a thumbs up.
Quad-band GSM and tri-band 3G support
The BlackBerry Curve 9320 is not a bad phone in its own right. It offers an established, functional platform with a no-fuss interface alongside elegant styling. However, at the midrange price point, there are simply better-equipped devices to be had.
Even if it were priced lower, the Curve 9320 would still be a hard sell in a market obsessed with touchscreen. RIM has obviously realized that, and has invested highly into recreating their own platform along those lines.
Easy to use core features
There's no two ways about it, the BlackBerry Curve 9320 isn't a phone that will excite many of you. Its screen is small and low resolution and the selection of apps on offer is fairly poor. But, if you're in the market for an upgrade to your old budget BlackBerry or you just want a capable messaging-oriented smartphone with a great keyboard then this phone is well worth a look.
Value for money
The BlackBerry Curve 9320, unlike a lot of budget Android handsets we see, offers two things that are very important and extremely rare at this end of the market: functionality and value for money. RIM has been honest with the marketing it's a phone that's all about social networks and being connected and hasn't attempted to make it into something it's not, and we like that far too many company's these days attempt to oversell their frankly under-specced handsets.
Comes loaded with all the connections you'd expect from an Android phone
All in all, we're impressed with the BlackBerry Curve 9230. The fact that this lower mid-range BlackBerry comes loaded with all the connections you'd expect from an Android phone is reassuring. The OS browser is a pain to use, the app selection isn't great and the Huawei Ascend G300 does offer more for less, however with its keyboard and messaging prowess, it's definitely on the money for a certain type of user.
Great battery life
RIM no longer produces smartphones that compete with the desirability of Apple products and the younger market which once craved BBM is now rapidly migrating to cheap yet stylish Android smartphones and iPhones which now boast iMessage, a more than capable BBM rival. The BlackBerry Curve 9320 is average in almost every way but will still appeal to BlackBerry fans and anyone after a best in class keyboard and upgraded BBM. As a smartphone, it's actually one of the simplest ones out there.
Creaky, plasticky backplate, Tiny, low-res screen
The BlackBerry Curve 9320 is a budget option for BBM addicts and those who love the feeling of physical keys under their thumbs. No touchscreen, iffy build quality and a poor selection of apps mean you might be better casting your eye elsewhere, however.
Impressive sound quality
The 9220 features BB's sturdy build and iconic keypad. Its UI is pleasant, and multimedia performance is also good. On the other hand, like every BB phone, this one also has a few annoyances such as its BIS dependability. Despite that, for around Rs 10,000 it's a great deal for anyone looking for a QWERTY messenger.
Impressive sound quality
At Rs. 10,990, frankly, the Curve 9220 doesn't hold a candle to cheap Android devices that are now proliferating and which offer features like 3G, GPS and mobile hotspot at a lesser price. So, if you're considering the 9220 for your first smartphone, only look here if all your friends have BBM and thus you have to go for a BlackBerry because of peer pressure. The other reason could be if you type a fair bit and touchscreen phones are the equivalent of smartphone hell for you.
Simple, attractive and classy low weight phone
The BlackBerry Curve 9220 is a stylish phone in slim design and glossy body. The BBM services as always are at its best. Instant Messaging, BlackBerry App world and many such applications do justice to this new Curve series phone. But its weak camera and functionalities with slow 512 MB RAM come in its way to claim clear lead over other competing phones. So, we give this phone three star rating.
BB OS 7.1, Good battery life
This is the phone for you if you want the latest BlackBerry OS 7 experience on a budget. While the Curve 8520 should cost you between Rs. 7,500 and 7,900 (depending on your bargaining skills), it's not worth the ~2.5K savings because of the sluggishness caused by lack of memory and the older, dated OS. If the only reason you want a BlackBerry is to get on BBM, and you don't plan on using any apps at all, the 8520 might actually suffice for you.
Generous 8GB memory
If you were to take the BlackBerry Bold 9900 out of the equation and judge the BlackBerry Bold 9790 on its own merits, you could quite confidently say it's a cracking little phone. We're not massively excited by it but, geek-speak aside, just the specs alone make it worthy of a Â£350/$450 SIM-free price tag.
Enhanced email and data security with BlackBerry Internet Service
Price is the biggest thing the Bold 9790 has in its favor. It's the affordable option in the premium line. One that's not supposed to compete with the flagship but help RIM widen their demographic and get a foothold in emerging markets.
The 9790 is a natural upgrade from the Bold 9780 but you can throw in a few Curves there as well for flavor. It should be a good option too for loyal RIM users who fancy a transition to touchscreen but think the Torch line is taking it too far.
The BlackBerry 9790 is another solid, keyboard-equipped smartphone from RIM, with the very welcome addition of a touchscreen. Its keyboard is decent, screen quality good and interface nice to use. As a budget alternative to the Bold 9900, it does what's required. However, the small, low-resolution screen and still deathly slow uptake of apps mean it trails behind most equivalent phones by some distance.
Excellent battery performance
The role of the Bold 9790 is clearly to provide a bridge between the Bold 9900 and Curve 9360, which is quite a tough job. While the Bold 9790 is well built, it looks unremarkable, lacking the the generous screen, fantastic keyboard and premium build of the Bold 9900, although it's portability will be an advantage for many people.
Poor touchscreen interface
The £350 price tag of the BlackBerry Bold 9790 is a major sticking point for one of the most basic smartphones on the market. The £99 Android contenders like the Huawei Ascend G300 beat the BlackBerry Bold 9790 in all areas.
Worse still, the keyboard toting Nokia Asha 201 costs around £60 and does a similar job, showing the challenge that faces all future BlackBerry phones ahead of the end of year overhaul of phone hardware and BlackBerry OS.
High pixel densitiy screen
Porsche Design P'9981 is a smartphone from BlackBerry. The phone with the futuristic QWERTY keyboard was formerly known as the BlackBerry Knight. The handset will be available from Porsche Design stores and there is speculation that the price tag will be a very Porsche-like $2,000. So what are you getting for that stack of 20 C notes? The device offers solid construction, for one thing with a forged stainless steel frame, leather back, and a sculpted QWERTY keyboard.
App selection not good enough
The BlackBerry Porsche Design P'9881 is clearly an overpriced fashion handset that does little to truly justify its Â£1275 price. However, there is a charm to its build and styling that does make it stand out from the crowd. Moreover, the keyboard is superb and there are some nice extras included in the box. Ultimately, though, it's the BlackBerry part of the partnership that lets it down.
BlackBerry OS 7 runs very smoothly
The BlackBerry Curve 9350 is the entry level device in RIM's new lineup, but it serves to point out what is wrong with RIM. In the midst of bleeding market share to Android and iOS on the strength of the operating system, RIM has chosen hardware as their new rallying cry. The Curve 9350 is a good entry level phone, but it unfortunately still runs the same basic OS that the Curve 8330 did three years ago, and at $79.99 on contract the phone is well overpriced.
Slim form factor is perfect for pockets
RIM proves that you don't have to have an Android or iOS phone in your pocket to go the smart route, but you'll definitely be on the lower end of the coolness scale among your hipster friends. But if your work requires that you be on a BlackBerry, or you need an inexpensive but robust little phone to get the job done, the Curve 9350 is worth investigating. While the camera and connection options don't put it on the cutting edge, it should serve you very well as a business and personal device.
Responsive platform experience
Just by looking at the handset, it embodies all the qualities you want with a premium smartphone like its razor sharp looks, solid construction, and premium materials. However, we're not fans of the $299.99 on-contract price that T-Mobile is asking for since its hardware specs and platform experience pale in comparison to some of its rivals.
Finally some top-end specs. Has BlackBerry ripened with age?
It's hard not to recommend the Bold 9900, because here we have a fantastic piece of kit that we can confidently describe as RIM's best BlackBerry to date. That's saying something, because the manufacturer has pumped out some cracking handsets over the years.
Yes, we're dismayed by the lack of a decent camera and slightly disappointed about the web browsing experience, but all of this is irrelevant if you're just buying this as a messaging device, which many people will.
Excellent reception and call quality, a responsive though small touchscreen and a decent camera
Is this RIM's best BlackBerry ever? You bet! The build quality and materials are downright ritzy and tasteful, the keyboard is the best on a mobile device and 4G speeds are good. It has excellent reception and call quality, a responsive though small touchscreen and a decent camera. But some modern amenities are still missing; there's no mobile hotspot feature, no WiFi calling and no front camera. The phone is also quite expensive with a contract at $299 (after a $50 rebate).
Overall, the 9900 is definitely a sexy slab of circuitry, but we still can't skirt around the fact that RIM has been making the same device for years now. We're glad to see the improved specs and solid hardware, but it doesn't detract from the fact that the OS is virtually unchanged except for some visual flair and new APIs.
RIM's BlackBerry Bold remains the company's flagship device. The 9900 is fast, powerful and light, with a hybrid keyboard/touch user interface that should suit all types of user. Combined with the new BlackBerry 7 operating system, this looks set to be the BlackBerry for your pocket.
A handset to turn the tide
The best BlackBerry Bold ever? Perhaps it is. The core features of BlackBerry are still compelling, the keyboard will let you skip over keys rattling out messages, with a rock of the thumb here and a glancing prod there, in ways that only BlackBerry users understand.
The addition of a touchscreen does make a difference, but the overall experience isn't a huge evolution from BB6. Whilst BB7 is familiar, there isn't much here that really drives things forward into the competitive arena.
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