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My BlackBerry Torch 9800 First Impressions

I know I was harsh a few weeks back after the Torch announcement. I had high hopes for RIM and wanted to be blown away–an unreasonable expectation. Thus, I might not have given the Torch its fair shake.

Well, I just got back from vacation and guess what’s sitting on my desk when I get back? My very own Torch.

Spoiler alert: it’s awesome!

It’s so awesome that I am writing this review from the Torch.

So with only a few hours to play, here are my first thoughts.

Slider and on screen keyboards: I am usually a slider hater. I have just never liked the form. But the Torch slider really just is the best of both worlds. I am writing this part of the review from the on screen keyboard. Even though its smaller than other on screen keyboards, it just feels right with two thumbs. My thumbs can reach all the way across with ease in landscape mode and I have made only a few mistakes. While portrait mode is a little more cramped and I made s few more mistakes, it just works well. The automatic spell correction is a bit iffy though. Its been putting some weird words in this review. But that’s the beauty of a slider. You can just get a real physical keyboard whenever you want. If I want a character that I can easily access on my traditional blackberry keyboard, I can just go get it without having to navigate multiple software keyboards.

The physical build: This is one sexy phone. RIM really does put some polish on its devices and this is slick. A black textured back and a gray polished face. Its a new status symbol for Blackberry users.

OS6: The status bar is definitely helpful. Anything happens, I know about it. The manipulate-able app bar lets me just have my home page any way I want it.

Day one definitely impressed. If you have a blackberry now (which I am sure you do), you are going to want this!

19 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. “Lets me”, not “let’s me”

  2. My only and main concern, how good is the battery?
    This is not a 1500 mhA and I want to know how good is this phone compared to the 9700.

  3. I’m typing here from my bb torch its way easier when u have it in auto corrective mode and add all the miss spelled words to ur dictionary. But I do want to know how to show off the start up video with all the apps coming at you. This s by far th best bb I’ve ever owned

  4. Well as far as the battery goes my 12 hour days I start streaming slacker since pandora isn’t available boo for about 20 min then browsing the web all day pretty much and streaming videos from the onion and you tube my battery goes out by 5-6pm with 56 user installed apps

  5. What type of review is that? Pathetic. If the writers of this site want to be taken as serious bloggers, when reviews are written, you need to make them actual reviews and not some half-assed quickly thrown up blog posts.

    The reason I don’t come to BerryReview any longer is mainly the lack of substance in any of the original posts.

    The news posts can be found on any of the numerous BlackBerry related sites that are out there.

    When it comes to original content, actually try and make it look like you put some time and effort into the story, rather than having it look as if it was hastily slapped together on the train ride into your job.

    • Im sorry you feel that way. This post isn’t meant as a full blown review, only a post “after a few hours to play”.

      We appreciate your comment and will try to be be clear about when something is a review, and when a post is simply about first impressions.

    • The post reads first impressions and thats basically what the post is, we do try to keep it as professionally as possible but we do this because we like to share our love for BB with others. Sorry to hear you feel that way but you are more than welcome to submit a review of your own as a guest post?

  6. I dunno if my comment posted 3 or 4 times. If it did, sorry. Thank TMobile and their coverage at this airport.

  7. It doesn’t even matter that its not a full-blown review. The point is, that the original posts on this site are pathetic. A few random sentences and that’s it. Its like someone took a few tweets and threw them together and was like “Wallah! A post!”. That’s expected on the typical news posts that happens, but if you’re going to put original posts up, be original and spend some time on it.

    And just as a note: I am not referring to this post alone…it just happened to be the one that was there at the time.

  8. I have the torch and love it. I used to have an Iphone 3gs and am a bb lover at heart. Iv had this phone for about 4 days and have no complaints. For me the batery lasted about 2 days. OS6 is awsome! And I love how it has 4 keybords to use. Anyway I just wanted to say I thought this “post” was great aspecialy cuz it came rite from the torch.

  9. I am commenting from my Torch. I like it, but I amm not in love. Not yet anyway. I always want the newest toy, but agonize while making a change.

    The phone is good. I just think I liked my 9700 too much. I like the fact that the keyboard is always there and it just feels good in your hand. I am always using the keyboard with my Torch so it makes me feel like I really never needed the touch screen and only had BBOS6 envy.

    I will give this phone another week and if I am not in love, I will go back to muy 9700.

  10. I’ve been running the 9800 for a week now. My “using it everyday” impressions. Battery life is less than the 9700. Maybe as much as 15-20% less. The processor worries are real. I find the phone constantly lagging. Most noticeable when I highlight a number of messages to delete. Can have up to a 2-3 second delay after the delete before I can get control back of the screen. Phone keypad can be a problem if you have to dial numbers after a call connects. i.e. Dial 0 to reach an operator. I found I had to exit the keypad after dialing the extension or my face would press an extra number.

    “All your OS 5 software will run great in OS6” OK, that claim was a stretch. I’m finding about 20% of the software I used on the 9700 will not run without some level of problem. Some problems are minor. i.e. You can’t use the touch screen to navigate. But the track pad works fine. Some are major. i.e. the program crashes and won’t run. A couple have been fatal. PingChat took the ability to reconnect to the BB network completely away. Had to restore from a backup. I’m sure most of these issues will be resolved once OS6 compliant versions are released.

    Lack of accessories will be with us for a while. But we are starting to see a few things trickle out. I miss the cradle a lot. I am waiting to see what apps come out for “Activate in cradle mode”

    Am I dumping the 9800? No way. The normal usage is still excellent. There are a few tweaks needed to the software. But nothing much more than we see with any first release. I have not tested .161 yet. But will do so in a few days.

    I still feel this phone is a winner. It wasn’t ready to be released. But we are getting there. I’m fairly happy so far.

    • 20% less battery life, 2-3 second lag, and only 20% of the apps run. Coupled with a slow processor and abysmal screen resolution for a flagship phone and the fact that a good deal of BB users would have to jump ship on their service provider, I’m thinking that anyone that says this phone is incredible, awesome or even anything more than fair is not being honest. Lets face it, this phone is an embarrassment for a company that Should be producing a much better product at this stage of the game.

  11. The Torch rocks but you’ll really need insurance if you wanna take care of your phone. I recommend Ensquared Phone Insurance, they offer 1yr and 2yrs phone coverage for accidental damage plus coverage for lost or stolen phones. You can check them out at

  12. hi, i have the blackberry torch, i was just wondering if you know wether it has the pingchat app or you know how to get it?
    any help would be appriated 🙂

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