RIM BlackBerry Storm2 9520 review
Given RIM’s stated aim to entice consumers with its latest smartphones, it’s surprising to find that there’s as yet no way of directly synchronising Google Contacts or Calendar out of the box, so consumers still have to find a workaround. And BlackBerry AppWorld remains a shadow of both the App Store and Android Market. Although there are apps for most popular social-networking sites, there simply isn’t the variety of free ones to compete. And, frustratingly, a lot of the existing applications simply haven’t been designed with the Storm’s touchscreen in mind.
It’s a shame, since elsewhere there’s very little missing. You get a 3.2-megapixel camera with LED flash, autofocus and electronic image stabilisation, images from which are decent if a little washed out. There’s now Wi-Fi where there was none before, plus the obligatory HSDPA, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, GPS, light sensor and accelerometer.
You get a 3.5mm headphone socket, so you don’t need an adapter to use your own headphones, and there’s a micro USB socket for charging and data connection. The music and video players are good too, supporting a range of formats, and the quality of both sound and pictures is superb.
But the biggest problem for the Storm2 is that battery life is less than stellar from the 1,400mAh cell. In our real-world tests, we make 30 minutes’ worth of phone calls, download 50MB of data and then leave the phone idle, receiving email until the battery dies. We didn’t quite have time to complete the test before going to press, but the Storm2 looked like lasting a maximum of three days – well short of its rivals.
It’s a shame, because otherwise the Storm2 would seem to be the ideal phone. The BlackBerry email service, which hoovers up email from your accounts and then spits it out to the phone, coupled with the fantastic typing experience means it’s an excellent choice for heavy emailers. Meanwhile, the slick OS, attractive design and good media capabilities, mean consumers will be satisfied too.
But, despite the fact that RIM is pushing the Storm2 as a consumer, as well as a business handset, and although it’s available to non-business users for free on a 24-month, £35 per month contract (including BlackBerry email and unlimited data), it’s no iPhone killer. It’s a very good phone but still needs better battery life and a greater spread of quality, free apps.
|Cheapest price on contract||£0|
|Contract monthly charge||£35.00|
|Contract period||24 months|
|Talk time, quoted||6hrs|
|Standby, quoted||13 days|
|Dimensions||62 x 14 x 112.5mm (WDH)|
|Camera megapixel rating||3.2mp|
|Resolution||360 x 480|
Other wireless standards
|OS family||BlackBerry OS|