The latest Blackberry, available exclusively for AT&T, is the first Blackberry to offer a full slideout keyboard as well as touchscreen. A new operating system, Blackberry 6.0, has resolved some of the inconveniences of prior Blackberry systems.
The touchscreen is improved to eliminate the clicking sound of the SurePress system in former models. The vertical slider is intuitively comfortable to use, and the unit feels solid to handle. The slider was designed for both durability and smooth operation. Like most slider phones, it can be set to answer the phone when the slide is opened, and hang up by closing the slide.
The 5 megapixel camera offers both autofocus convenience and choice of modes for even greater control of picture quality. While many phone camera users keep photos stored in their phones, the Blackberry Torch was designed to enable the user to print quality pictures from the phone. The Blackberry Torch also includes an app for uploading videos to YouTube.
Web browsing is greatly improved over previous Blackberry models with the new WebKit. Universal Search offers quick and easy search results.
The 624 Mhz processor may seem a little slow, especially when running multiple apps. However, additional processor speed would come with the sacrifice of battery life, so if processor speed is a factor, the user may want to close unused apps instead of letting them run in the background. The 1300mAh battery is rated at 5.5 hours talk time, 13 days standby time, 29.8 hours audio, and 6.0 hours video play.
One drawback of the Blackberry Torch is the lack of support for 3D graphics in some gaming apps. However, the typical Blackberry user is focused on communications as opposed to gaming, so the current focus is on communication tools.
The new Social Feeds app integrates Instant Messaging, social networks, and status updates, and even includes an rss reader. This app has received rave reviews from users impressed with how easy it is to use.
Unlike many other smartphones, the antenna design isn’t blocked by the user’s hands, so dropped calls are rare.
Memory includes 4 gigabytes of internal storage memory, 512 megabytes of flash memory, and a 4 gigabyte microSD card (which can be upgraded to a 32 gigabyte microSD card.)
Other features of the Blackberry Torch include gps, wifi, and Bluetooth capability, and the unit weighs in at 5.7 ounces, including the battery.
The newest Blackberry is designed to be easy to use, and that goal was reached. The keyboard is neither cramped nor bulky, and some users have commented on how fun the Blackberry Torch is to use.