When I found out that Blackberry was going to release a touch screen/keyboard combo, I could hardly wait to get one! I have had my Blackberry Torch since November and have been generally happy with it. The pros: The choice to use a keyboard or touchscreen, the size is not too cumbersome and the picture quality of the camera is excellent. When I took pictures of Half Dome in Yosemite with my Torch, the pictures came out crystal clear and no one could believe a phone camera could provide that quality.
The Cons: It is very awkward to get to the battery case, such as to reboot the phone. I have the Google Voice app loaded and if too much memory is used up on the phone, Google Voice freezes, causing me to reboot. The so called easily removable battery case is very hard to move and is awkward as well. Another con is the phone tends to be very top heavy when you slide the screen up to use the QWERTY keyboard. The keys are smaller than the previous Bold keyboard but it is still easy to type on.
I hope that Blackberry gets on the bandwagon with a faster browser and more apps, but all in all, I have been a loyal Blackberry user and have enjoyed using the Torch.
32 of 35 people found this review helpful.
Review For: BlackBerry Torch 9800 - 4GB - Black (Rogers Wireless) Smartphone
BlackBerry and touchscreen haven’t previously been a great match. The first touchscreen phone from the Canadian email masters was the Storm, well-named because it went down like a wet weekend. There was much to like, such as the click-through touchscreen that confirmed each finger press. But it lacked wi-fi, was horrible to type on and the software was unforgivably flaky.
More than that, you had to ask why the company that made the best keyboards on any portable device had delivered a product without any keys at all. This week, BlackBerry’s owner Research in Motion announced the Torch: a touchscreen BlackBerry with, wait for it, a slide-out keyboard. The best of both worlds, perhaps.
The Torch looks like a businesslike Palm Pre Plus – which is no bad thing – but with BlackBerry’s familiar grid of icons. This has had an overhaul to make it look what RIM is calling ‘fresh and familiar’ as part of the new operating system, version 6, which aims to be more user-friendly to newcomers. BlackBerry has a markedly different system from other phones and does take some getting used to. While this new OS is glitzier and more intuitive, it’s an organic development from the earlier one. If you have a BlackBerry Bold or Bold 9700, by the way, the new OS will work on them too and should be available soon.
Universal Search is a handy feature on the phone. Just start typing and the software automatically looks for everything relevant, including contacts, emails and more. If there’s nothing in the device, you’re offered links to Google and other sources. Palm pioneered this but BlackBerry has added extra destinations like YouTube. It’s a highly efficient way to find things.
The new OS also has an internet browser which is massively faster than before. Multitouch is now supported so you can pinch to zoom as on the iPhone.
Of course, the key benefits of BlackBerry are preserved: gold-standard email delivery that’s fast, efficient and secure, an unbeatably usable keyboard and the cost-effective BlackBerry Messenger. Wherever in the world you are, you can send unlimited instant messages to other BBM users at no extra cost – something that’s been adopted happily by backpacking students wanting to text home for free as much as savvy business users wanting an immediate conversation of messages with colleagues.
If you’re not keen on touchscreens, the BlackBerry Bold 9700 is still very hard to beat, but this is a highly impressive business phone.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful.