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BlackBerry 6 Review: Email & BlackBerry Messenger Improvements

I originally planned on making this part of the BlackBerry Torch 9800 review but most of these improvements and updates will be true for all BlackBerry 6 devices. RIM has added some tweaks all around that really make email on the BlackBerry Torch 9800 a streamlined experience. Other than my one complaint where they flipped the functions of the P and N keyboard shortcuts RIM has actually made things even better than they used to be which is pretty impressive.

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The biggest feature in my opinion is the ability to change the display style of email in the messages folder to “Group by subject.” If you have ever used Gmail then you know exactly what this is. It will combine messages into a conversation so you don’t lose track of it. I have been waiting for this feature for AGES since previously it was limited to only Gmail accounts in their own folder. I really think people will like this new addition where you just click on the shared subject line and you are taken to view the whole thread.

The HTML email view is another feature that got a HUGE update. It seems to make use of the new WebKit browser and renders the HTML correctly! No more jagged edges and wrapped tables that made no sense. One thing you will notice in the screenshots below is that when a HTML email is opened that is wider than the screen the email will scroll from left to right. In reverse of how the new browser works you can tap twice on the screen and it will zoom out to the full view of the email. This makes sense but it can lead to a bit of scrolling left and right.

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There are no real new menu options but you can see them below anyways. I like how BlackBerry 6 has finally added cascading menus where you can click on a menu header and it opens a submenu.

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Below you can see the new menu system for the messages application. In the third image you can see that option I was talking about for Display Style which gives you threaded messages.

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Nothing crazy new in those menus above other than that addition of threaded conversations. Once you start writing messages you can see that RIM gave the whole touchscreen interface for the Torch a nice overhaul from the Storm. I absolutely love the little context sensitive menu on the bottom which has an easy to press send button which cuts one keystroke compared to my 9700.

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BlackBerry Messenger also got some nice updates that I appreciate. I am not sure if this is new to BlackBerry 6 but you can now swipe left and right in a BBM conversation to switch between different conversations just like you can with email. I use this trick all the time. Alternatively RIM also added a button on the bottom right to easily switch between chats.

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The only complaint I have about the new look for BBM is that they put the enter/send button RIGHT next to the backspace button on the virtual keyboard. I have found myself sending text messages and BBM’s when I actually meant to delete them!

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Let me know if there was something specific you wanted to see!

6 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. WOW Great Post. I almost feel like I have the 9800. I can see your point about the button placement. It is like delete and enter being side by side

  2. Can you select multiple pictures at one time and send them as email, versus having to select them one at a time?

    • Its funny that you ask. It looks like RIM did build in functionality to select multiple pictures but when you do and try to attach them only the last one is attached….i

  3. Looking forward to OS6 on my 9700. Has RIM allowed you to select a different email address when replying or forwarding?

  4. I like the BlackBerry Messenger slide between conversations but I’m running the newest version that came out yesterday and not sure when it stuck in.

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