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BlackBerry Bold 9900

  • Slimmest BlackBerry yet maintains reputation for well built handsets
  • OS7 faster and more responsive than ever
  • BlackBerry flasghip device boasting excellent QWERTY keyboard and touchscreen
Written by Adam Wajnberg
29/12/2011

Bold indeed! BlackBerry’s new flagship phone is trying to have it all, and mostly succeeds. The 9900 boasts the standard BlackBerry full featured QWERTY keyboard, and a 2.8” touch screen, all wrapped up in BlackBerry’s slimmest phone yet.

Under the hood, the Bold sports similar specs to the Torch 9860 – competitive, but not market beating. What’s more important is that the hardware is optimized to work well with BlackBerry’s OS7 operating system, so everything is fast, responsive and beautiful to behold.

The Bold line is usually notable for the high-quality materials used in construction, including leather, rubberized plastic and even carbon fibre. The 9900 goes for a more angular look, using a honeycomb fiberglass that makes the phone very strong and comfortable, even if the look will be a departure for traditional BlackBerry fans.

BlackBerry have made a big effort to make the touchscreen less of a gimmick, and it shows. All of the inbuilt apps are capable of taking advantage of both the hardware keyboard and the touchscreen, and the browser is now faster and more readable than previous attempts. The phone is also equipped with a Near Field Communication (NFC) chip, which allows for simple data exchanges and even purchases where available (hint – not in Australia. Yet). But the improvements to the overall spec sheet and user interface are still mostly focused on BlackBerry’s bread and butter – business applications. BlackBerry Messaging and Mail are faster and come with more features than ever before, and still boast the most secure encryption of any platform. The usual suite of business applications, including PRF readers and Microsoft Office editing software, are more responsive than ever. This unit re-establishes BlackBerry as the phone of choice for serious number-crunchers on the go.

The usual complaints about BlackBerry are still relevant – limited 3rd party apps, basic camera, no video calls and a steep price tag – but BlackBerry is slowly but surely meeting the market demand for these, while maintaining their reputation as makers of stylish, sophisticated business workhorses.

PROS
Sturdy, stylish design
Workable touchscreen and QWERTY keyboard
Fast performance on all tasks

CONS
Limited market for 3rd party apps
No video calling
Touchscreen still very small compared to competition

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