Unfamiliar with BlackBerry devices, we gave Carl a BlackBerry Bold 9790 and PlayBook 2.0 to experience for one week. As a devoted Android user, did BlackBerry’s latest devices and OS upgrades tick the right boxes for a man who lives off Ice Cream Sandwich?
Those who know me well enough would agree that they’ve never seen me own a BlackBerry or Apple iPhone. In my view, why eat rotten fruit, when you can eat delicious Ice Cream Sandwiches all day? So when I was presented the opportunity to test out the BlackBerry Bold 9790 mobile phone, I felt uncomfortable with the thought of leaving my familiar Android device at home for BlackBerry devices that were alien to me. I am however a firm believer that you shouldn’t never judge a book by its cover. Therefore, I spent a week with this foreign object by my side, coupled with a BlackBerry PlayBook pre-installed with 2.0.
Now the first thing that you notice about any phone is its design. As far as smartphones go, the Bold 9790 is quite good looking. It has the usual curved look, but has one of the best keyboards that I have seen so far attached to it and the screen is the right proportion for the size of the phone. If the touchscreen was any bigger, the keyboard would be too small, and if it were any smaller, well it would be pretty useless as a touchscreen all together.
When you start to use the Bold 9790, it has a nice bit of style about it. It runs very well on BB7, the latest OS from BlackBerry. My past criticisms of BlackBerry seemed to vanquish as I swiped through a sharper user interface that was responsive and flowed. Certainly better than some of the older BlackBerrys that I have played with in the past.
As you would expect on any BlackBerry, with the Bold 9790 you get the unique BlackBerry services, such as Messenger, World. One feature I love is that BlackBerry App World now has thousands of Google Play apps integrated into its store. This doesn’t give you access to every single Android app, but I can imagine how previous BlackBerry users were disgruntled with envy as their Android amigos were getting the best games long before BlackBerry could. Definitely means you can have a lot more fun on the Bold 9790.
Internet browsing on the Bold 9790 is next to none. The handset really has impressed me when surfing the web is concerned. The speed that the phone fully loads a web page, was sometimes faster than my desktop computer. This was in an area that 3G was particularly strong, but still, wow.
The actual usability of the Bold 9790, comes into its own when used with the BlackBerry PlayBook. Now using the upgraded 2.0 OS, the ‘BlackBerry Bridge’ app allows you to connect your Bold 9790 up to your PlayBook and use it as a controller. You can easily mirror images and other items that you have on the Bold 9790 straight over to the PlayBook which is great to allow for a streamlined display of the handsets contents.
So, a week with the BlackBerry Bold 9790 went a lot better than expected. The handset shows off how far BlackBerrys have come since the first few versions. I found BB7 was really useful throughout my day to day usage and could be a realistic contender against the other operating systems.