At first glance the Curve 8900 looks really nice and can certainly be confused from a distance by being the Bold. I mean the style and design of the Curve 8900 with the looks of Bold/Storm combo, but weight is pure Curve…coming in at a light 110 grams.
Some key feature that I liked about the improved Curve is the elegance compared to previous models. The chrome trim around the hardware makes it stand out more. Sure you’re not buying the device simply for just looks, but it does make you feel better when you carry something around that you’re proud of. The trackball, now called the “Atomic” trackball, has been improved to increase response and performance and reduce the great deal of dust and link that made it suck before. It’s imbedded into the centre of the device and feels smoother when you are scrolling over. Some people liked to change the colour of their trackball, this only comes in black for now but give it a couple weeks and I’m sure there will be a whole buffet of colours to choose.
The screen is incredible. With a 2.4-inch high-res HVGA display, resolution of 480 x 360 it’s better than the Bold (which has 480×320). Makes everything you’re doing that much more exciting! Looking at your pictures or videos sure come alive.
Speaking about pics, the 8900 has a 3.2 megapixel camera with flash, autofocus and zoom. In addition, it has video capabilities also and can hold up to 16GB of memory. The music player is wicked also – a dominant speaker system is built in and it comes with a 3.5mm headphone jack. (Check out the video review as we played a bit of music and videos).
In addition, this is UMA enabled, or Rogers Talkspot – so you can use the Curve 8900 as your primary line and make call from your mobile while at home and it will not count as your cell minutes. All you’ll need to do is sign up for a plan and get a router.
With this being the thinnest BlackBerry to date (109mm x 60mm x 13.5mm) I felt the QWERTY keyboard a bit tight. Although comfortable to use, it’ll only take a few hours to get used to. The keys are all black and have a similar style as a previous model. I would have liked to see the keys from the Bold put on the 8900 as it would have increased the look of this device.
Now, with all the good comes a little bit of needed work. Majority of the frustration came regarding the browser and how 3G was not available and was EDGE was in. We tested the speed and it still loaded quickly. If you can get over the missing 3G this is certainly a device you want to pick up. It has everything you need when it comes to a Smartphone: the reliability of BlackBerry for your e-mail, contact, calendar… a wicked camera, UMA and a dominant screen. Plus it’s incredibly light.
The price point: currently available from $179.99 on a 3 year contract with a minimum $45 voice and data plan, 1-year contract: $549.99; 2-year contract: $499.99. More here at Rogers.
(Here is an online user guide from BlackBerry for the 8900)