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BlackBerry Storm2 9520 - BlackBerry Storm2 9520

Niall Magennis

By Niall Magennis

Reviewed:

Summary

Our Score:

7

As on the previous Storm, this handset uses BlackBerry’s SurePress technology. This basically means that the surface of the screen is clickable like a button. In practice it works as follows: you can select an area or item on the screen by placing your finger on it, but the phone doesn’t action the command unless you physically press down on the screen. BlackBerry has done a lot of work to make the new screen more responsive, as it now uses four ‘click’ sensors rather than the single one that was employed on the original handset. Also the clickable part of the display is now locked in place when the handset is in standby or turned off, so it doesn’t gather as much dust around the edges as before.

However, it goes without saying that if you’ve used other touchscreen smartphones this clickable display still takes some getting used to and, to be honest, even after using the phone for a week, we still didn’t like it. Firstly, the clicking sensation just feels wrong to us when applied to a touchscreen and secondly it slowed down our typing. For example, we found we could tap out an email faster on an iPhone than we could on the Storm2, which is not great considering the BlackBerry brand is synonymous with messaging. Still, some people may get along with it better than we do, as it does feel slightly more like a physical keyboard than just tapping on a standard touchscreen.

As well as the updated screen, the new model also seems a good deal faster than the original. As far as we know the Storm2 uses the same processor, but BlackBerry has doubled the phone’s main memory from 128MB to 256MB and this seems to have given the OS a bit more room to stretch its legs. For example, it’s less prone to slowdowns and pages are notably faster to load and render in the browser. Along with the increase in main memory, the flash memory used for document storage has also been doubled from 1GB or 2GB.

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NeilBolts

December 2, 2009, 10:23 pm

I've had the new storm 2 for a month or so now and I have to say I am bitterly regretting my decision. It freezes on me approximately every other day, the battery lasts a day at most, in terms of reception and making/dropping calls, my old N95 8gb was far superior. I cannot wait to get rid of it. Rubbish!!!

noTHINGface

December 3, 2009, 1:03 am

I think I'm most upset by the fact that it isn't an iPhone... Though it's cheaper to tether of course.

farki80

December 3, 2009, 3:31 am

I have to agree. The Storm and Storm2 has been a disaster to use. Everyone complains about Nokia's S60 UI, but the Blackberry UI is even way behind in both usability and flashiness.

Malderon

December 3, 2009, 8:09 am

I'm always defending my poor Storm. I really think that it just takes some getting used to. Complaining about usability is way off the mark to me, I can type much faster than on any other touchscreen keyboard (its a matter of getting the settings right), and I find the menu's etc to be very finger friendly and common sense (I'm not sure being behind in "flashiness" is such a bad thing, see TouchFlo)





Wi-Fi is the big omission for me on my Generation 1, I don't think I will be upgrading to a Storm2, I will probably be moving to android as I'm an open source fan, and think android will get more third party support but the Storm if you get the right firmware on there, and give it a bit of time then it really is a competant handset. I know alot of people had faults and signal dropping, but mines reliability and call quality have been first rate - maybe I was just lucky.





Anyway to anyone thinking of getting a smartphone on Voda, I would suggest you take the Storm2 seriously, especially if for example you need the corporate email integration.

Ed

December 3, 2009, 2:18 pm

@farki80: I have to disagree strongly that the Blackberry UI is behind in usability. It is quite simply excellent. Things are intuitively laid out, it's neat, and it's fast. S60 is still far, far behind.

Keithe6e

December 3, 2009, 2:50 pm

@noTHINGface: Though it's cheaper to tether of course.





Well, it's not any cheaper, it's not the phone that dictates tethering rates.. :)

farki80

December 4, 2009, 7:55 pm

I guess we can agree to disagree. I find Blackberry UI to be archaic as you do so with S60.

mandyearl

December 5, 2009, 12:59 am

The Blackberry GUI is way behind any mobile OS currently on the market, even none-smartphones. You only need to use the contact, calendar and messaging applications to know what I mean. It really is like using an old Word Perfect software.





The OS itself may be powerful but so it Windows Mobile. UI wise, RIM is way behind everyone - even Microsoft.

Zero

December 5, 2009, 3:46 am

When referring to far behind? Far behind who and what? Whats it not got to make it far behind? Please don't mention a Iphone

Vince

December 18, 2009, 4:26 am

I'm using a Blackberry 8310 at the moment, having previously been very anti-Blackberry. I'm converted to it - it's not full of bells and whistles but it works very well indeed and has a lot of basic features I wish any of my previous phones had.





However, I really really really really really (yes really) hate the newer UI on things like the Bold/Storm. I've had a look a few times now and it really isn't what I wanted. A truely horrible change and utterly unintuitive.





Right now a Nokia N97 + Blackberry 8310 will be the way it is for the forseeable.

Ed

December 18, 2009, 4:52 am

@Vince: Not really sure what you mean with regard the UI. I've not used any Blackberrys prior to the Bold but having had a quick look at some videos of the 8310, it appears that the new OS is just a visual revamp but functionally the same.

matt10

March 31, 2010, 11:05 pm

i havent actually got a bb storm 2 yet but am hoping to get one. I think all the bad reviews regarding it breaking are down to people not treating them properly. othyer issues are in my view one offs and i think its just damaging a good phones reputation. Some things like the surepress technology are things you have to either get use to, or just dont get the phone.

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