Pros Small size, easy to use, excellent battery power, fast, fast, fast!
Cons no 3G or videocamera; cannot edit or create word or excel documents
Summary I bought this phone last week; I have never had a crackberry before, but it became necessary to get one given a need to have access to email when away from the office. I previously had the Samsung sync and had been less than impressed with this phone's limited capacity when it came to checking and responding to email. So, I broke down and became "one of those people." First, I was surprised by this phone's small size and really bright screen. The phone fits easily in a little holster that I purchased and it is not too large if I put it in my pocked or clip it on my pants. The initial set up was a snap; I was checking my various email accounts within 5 minutes. I really just needed this phone for email and it definitely delivers. The call quality is not bad either; certainly better than my Samsung Sync, although not as good as the old Razr that I had. Typing on the keyboard is easy and took me just a few minutes to figure out how to access all the symbols. The best part is that the whole configuration, including the trackball navigation, is incredibly easy to use! The OS seems to have been set up around this whole trackball navigation system. Getting my Sim card and memory card into the phone was a little difficult, though. In addition, I am bummed that I have to pay for software to allow me to edit and view Word and Excel documents; it's not critical, but being able to do so would totally eliminate my need to carry a laptop around when traveling on business. In addition, I would have liked either 3G capability or a videocamer - adding these two components would have probably resulted in a 10 rating. The camera works well with the built-in flash and pictures come out really nicely. The Blackberry system is very fast; even though you don't get 3G access on this phone, checking email and surfing the web is so fast that you don't notice (the Blackberry is even faster than my previous 3G phone).
Bottom line - if you need a device from which you can check and compose emails on easily AND you want something that has a great battery life and phone capabilities, this is the phone. You WILL NOT be disappointed!Updated
A week into owning this product and I am finding it more and more necessary to get through the day. It has actually enabled me greater freedom at work, as I'm no longer tied to running back to check my computer every 10 minutes. The phone is so easy to use; everything on it is very intuitive and seamlessly integrated. I have not found this phone to be slower without the 3G capability; in fact, this phone with the Blackberry service is proving to be far more reliable and much faster than my previous 3G enabled phone. The keyboard has a nice set up; I tried the apple iPhone, but hated the tap-to-type keyboard on the screen. The call quality continues to be fairly good, maybe a little hollow but better than my Samsung Sync. I still wish that it at least came with software to edit and create Word and Excel documents with, but it's not a deal breaker for me by any means. Handango offers some options, but I would prefer to pay less than what they are asking (if anyone knows of good Word and excel-compatable software for a BB that is synced to a Mac, please send me a message at arcurlyq at yahoo dot com). I will agree that the lack of videocamera is a bummer, BUT the email capabilities of the phone were more important for me. Feel free to contact me personally if you have specific questions about the device. I am looking forward to spending more time seeing what else this baby can do!
Pros Practical uses Simple and Easy to use
Cons How do you change email delivery???
Summary If your looking for tech advise this is not the review for you. If your a normal everyday joe that likes tech, but really does not understand or care about the behing the scenes guru talk - read on.
There are also some helpful hints which will make it even more enjoyable at the end, so please read on.
First you will not regret this phone!
Ok I m one of those guys who says I m gonna buy a palm phone and use it to organize my life(yeah right.) Well I have tried numerous upon numerous PDA phones. Palm 750, 650(2) Nokia E52, Siemens(yes they were hot once), 8120 and I am sure some others.
I have always hoped to become that guy that is organized, but I finally realized that will never really work by trusting some little digital device.
Well after dealing with the new 750 Palm windows version on vacation for a week I was giving up. Depressed I went back to the ATT store and was ready to just get a simple flpi phone.
But then God smiled down on me(Its still safe to say his name?) I must say make sure you get a sales man that actually knows his stuff, that was my mistake when suckered into the 750.
When explaining to the sales man what I really want is a simple email delevery device that can do photos and carry a fair amount of tunes(Sorry Apple I don t need to hear 1000 songs betweensync and if so I can put a removable 4 Gig micro Sd card.) A simple menu system that gets me what I want without pushing 20 different buttons. I have never used the office doc because you can read or type much on a small screen, browse some web pages.and finally a phone that has good reception with an ear piece that I can actually hear out of PS 3G - needs a serious shot of steriods(What a joke).
He asked If i ever tried a BB before I told no and that I thought it ws more for that corporate guy who needs instant email and heard that the web is not that great.
He told me he has heard many stories like mine, guys hoping for that miricle device to make them the better organized business man, who always just became frustrated and pissed thier wife off for numerous hours the first few days by saying yes dear as we stare at our new best friend and try to figure out what the hell we are doing. (You know you've done this)
Instead of showing me a ton of phones he grabbed my Palm 750, walked into the backroom brought out the Curve and told me its time to grow up and become a realist. Plus buy a small pocket calendar($9.95)
So after he took his time and set up my email and explained some simple things he sent me on my way.
All I can say is Thank you!
All though I have only had it for one day I can already tell this is a winner. plain and simple to use, plus BB offers great support and actual information that explains what to do. He also set me up with a plan for $10 extra a month I can use it as a modem for my laptop. This is great since I am in real estate and am always looking for hotspots (Usually borrowing some idiot who never placd a password on thier modem.) while out looking at properties to get info. This is also a plus instead of trying to access and read a webpage on a tiny little screen.
The only issue I have is I don t want my email to be out i am having a hard time trying to figure out how to change the email delivery.
Overall this device appears to be easy to use is light and perfect in the hand. I wont miss my phone resetting or freezing and not syching correcly or coming up with some error issue not resolved.
Now for some extra advice.
Don t buy the leather case get the holster. If you go into security you can set it so when you place it in the holster it automatically locks.
The plug is an universal USB plug, so if you have a newer motorola on nokia car charger it may work and you ll save $30!
Plus it charges when hooked up to your CPU
Also i took the pushtalk button and turned it into the key pad lock button so if I throw it in my pocket instead of the holster.
The sales man also showed me how to create folders in the application screen. This is great for hiding all the extra Icons. What i did was i placed a folder called hidden icons in my extra apps folder I created. I then hid all the items such as purchase ring tones themes and many other sale devices.
As far as email goes you can set it that all you email accounts (including MMS) show up in one folder on the main application screen. Then just place your other emails folders in the secondary folder. You can always choose which account you want to send an email from or if you reply it will reply from the email address sent too.
So thats it I know I probably rambled on mostly, but lets face it most of us are always looking for that new gimmick that we think will save us time. I think by now we know it does not. Get a simple device that does the basics, you will actually save more time! If you are really going to type a word doc or compile and excel sheet you sure the hell are really not going to use you tiny litle key pads to do so.
Best of luck to all!
Pros Size, Fit, Form and Function
Cons Lack of 3G (high speed internet)
Summary Wow! First, I am not new to PDAs, as I have owned everything from the Treo 650 to their 750 model as well Cingular 8125 and Blackberry 8700. While this isn't the fastest internet phone due to lack of 3G, it does the job well when surfing the internet.
The Treos are notorious for performing a soft reset for no reason. They are much heavier than the Curve and have applications that most of us never use. The Blackberry 8700 was ok but lacked a good phone (needed a good bluetooth to overcome that) and had no camera.
What the Curve does extremely well is the attention to detail they put into designing this PDA. It's easy to navigate through each of the applications and has a nice 2meg pixel camera for good measure. The BB 8800 (came out 3 months ago) makes no sense UNLESS you work for a company that does not allow cameras on property. It is larger and heavier than the Curve with a poor keyboard and no built in spell checker.
This Curve gets a SOLID 9 only because it lacks 3g. Have I mentioned how thankful I am for this pda? As soon as this unit is available with 3g, I will push my company to get me one!
Pros Size, interface, funtionality, value
Cons Sound Quality
Summary Blackberry Review
So this is my first. I am sweet virgin blackberry ready to be picked. I thought I was an iPhone. I like the iPhone. But, the BB was much less expensive and frankly works better. Not as slick. But better. At this point, RIM the company that makes blackberry's, has been doing it for years and the curve represents that latest and most sophisticated direction the company has embarked on. With the Pearl and Curve RIM is actually moving away from corporate land - these two are much different beasts - both pretty, cool looking, a bit shiny but don't attract too much attention. The curve is really a perfect size. Barely larger then most other popular phone only devices, what strikes you when you first pick it up is diminshing size and weight. It looks large when sitting on a table but when placed next say a RAZR you realize it's barely larger. Held, it is light enough to rest nearly undetected in the pocket of a quality shirt, flat enough to comfortably slip into the back pocket of a pair of slacks and compact and frankly sturdy enough to drop into a pair of shorts for a day of adventure... And that's where it really becomes useful. Unlike the locked down corporate versions that many use, this BlackBerry has all the functionality of a PC laptop. It's not as elegant as a mac, I know I use one, but it is nearly as funtional as any PC laptop. It will do just about anything that the vast majority of people use a computer for on a quick daily basis. That is: email, web surf, google search, directions, news, and some access to photos, music and other benefits like in a pinch you could check your account balance or do play by play for a Yanks game.
I don't think many are going to give up their iPods for this machine, but in a pinch it does have a useful music player. It operates essentially as a USB drive and can even take a decent picture (from the perspective of a photographer). The camera takes good pictures relative to what looks to be its 2 inch by 2 inch screen and has a flash for dark close-ups. Viewed after a one touch email to a friend the native 2MP picture is about 4 x 5. That's fine for taking a pictures of an event poster and recalling later or even a decent scene sot. Available 2gb of storage for ~$50 makes keeping much of this easy, and as I said, mac or PC plug the phone in and it's a USB drive for easy file management.
The phones sound quality, I will be honest, sucks. I believe, and though I am no engineer, that most of the problem is AT&T's bad GSM sound quality. I had to use friends phones after loosing the first of the two curve's I've bought, and when using phones on T-Mobile and Verizon networks phones sound like phones while ATT&T sounds like a walkie talkie in a bathroom. Luckily the curve comes with a stereo headset. If you have not used one of these, you will quickly wonder why we ever thought that a phone should only go to one ear. It will not longer makes sense. Everything else we listen to comes in from both ears, why shouldn't the phone. Try a conference call-in for work, with the stereo headset wired to the phone it changes the user experience entirely. You won't go back.
The other issue with the phone is something that has confounded me for years. My first Ericcson analog cell phone in 1995 (gh 337 for you real techie's!) solved this issue perfectly and things have only regressed since then. If you live in a large metropolitan area chances are that there is significant background noise. The discreet mikes used in mobile phones condense sound in order to remain sensitive at great distances from the source of the sound. Well, this phone like so many these days, has the sensitivity cranked way up. This is great if you are an engineer in a sound proof room testing the best possible sound quality with no background noise. If you walk down a busy Manhattan street, the background noise for the other person is unbelievable. Even my first phone had a simple adjustment for mic sensitivity. This could also be an effect of the limited dynamic range available through AT&T's GSM network - less dynamic range means faster data, and more phone information transfered across what is a really impressive network - but i've found relative to other ATT&T phones the sound quality on this phone is only slightly worse. It would be great to see a phone with some noise canceling technology or at least an auto adjusting mic sensitivity. As far as AT&T's contribution to the problem, it's a trade off. You want to turn your phone on in Paris, the British Virgin Islands, the Middle East or Eastern Europe, or when your tire goes flat on some really dark deserted road in the middle of nowhere, and when you turn it on you want everything to work - messages, email, browsing - just like you were home. Then your only real choice is AT&T. It's a trade off many many customers will make some compromise for.
Overall, I think the biggest departure for the BlackBerry Curve is that it is decidedly not corporate. This is a Blackberry for personal use. It's aimed at exactly the same market as an iPhone. And its aim is good. It does not feel corporate in its size shape and form, but it still benefits from simple corporate style functionality requirements; battery life that comfortably allows a long weekend of personal use without a charger, or two heavy days. You only need to grab the supplied USB cable if you've already got your laptop and with some occasional time plugged into a USB port weeks away become easy and worry free. The UI is simple and fast and like a PC extremely customizable. It's not an iPhone, but if RIM seems ready capture a chunk of the upcoming text based personal communication market, this feel good unit and subsequent units can certainly entertain a broad group of people with a high degree of satisfaction and most importantly, a lesson learned from observing others in this market, make it feel good.
Pros Form factor
Cons Minimal software availability
Summary This is the best BlackBerry ever; Those who have never owned one HAVE NO VALID OPINION, becuase those of us who have know how powerful it is. The form factor is near perfect; keyboard size, screen size, it fits in your hand very naturally.