RIM’s Blackberry Curve 8900 was perhaps the first of its range of handsets to find mainstream success. Unlike the Pearl and previous Blackberry devices, the Curve manages to seamlessly blend the functionality of a business smartphone with the aesthetic of a mainstream mobile. The Curve may not boast the same features as the iPhone or other contenders in the touch screen market, but with full QWERTY keyboard it has found its success with casual and business users alike.
For me, the defining feature of an accessible smartphone is its keyboard. I’ve never been properly able to work those three-letters-to-one-key mobile phones, and touchscreen often ends in frustration or embarrassing typos. The Blackberry Perl tried to combine the two by offering a two-letters-per-key QWERTY keyboard but, for me, Blackberry’s first mainstream success was due to its sleek execution of the keyboard on the Curve.
The Curve also boasts a trackball, useful mainly for browsing the web. Rather frustratingly, the trackball doesn’t allow for free-scrolling through image galleries and can become hard to navigate if not cleaned. On the whole, however, the feature is something unique to Blackberry and gives you that little bit more control.
With a 3.2 megapixel camera included, the Curve has a handy tool for quick snapshots on the go. The images are clear and look fantastic on the Curve’s hi-res screen. Coupled with downloadable apps for Facebook and Twitter (TwitterBerry being one of the most prominent), the Curve can be used to update your social networks on the move.
In terms of business, which can also be utilised for pleasure, the Blackberry comes with the ability of Push email – allowing your mail to be delivered instantly to your phone. Blackberry messenger allows you to connect with and message other Blackberry users via a unique PIN that identifies your phone. This is usually free (or comes part of the Blackberry plan on most networks) and provides a cheaper alternative to SMS.
Along with video recording capabilities, built-in GPS with Blackberry Mpas (other apps can be downloaded too) and Wi-Fi support, the Curve packs in enough features to keep you busy.
Business people buy these phones, but so do 15-year-old girls. Their appeal, it seems, is limitless.
The phone is free on most networks with prices starting at around £15.00 per month. <—saf, this is where the link should go. I didn’t know whether to just copy and paste the link on mobile shop or whether there’s some sort of redirect URL you need to use to make sure the site gets paid?
The Gaj-it Verdict:
Design: 9/10 (sleek yet robust)
Usability: 8/10 (scroll-ball can be a bit irritating at times)
Features: 9/10 (wide-array of features for every user)
Value: 9/10 (comes as part of some fair packages with different networks)
This phone is one of the best smart phones on the market. It’s features are simple enough to use for the first time Blackberry user but robust enough that even the most seasoned Blackberry veteran can feel at home.