BlackBerry Curve 9380 Review


  • jl

    I wish blackberry would get a better keyboard for their touchscreens.

  • Alex Perrier

    At the first glance, with half the picture showing, i thought this was a Pearl 9100! i agree with Syrup regarding “High outright price”, and the rating of 65% seems all right. This would be a great device for Koodo along with the 9360!

  • Jim

    IMO, 6.5/10 is a little gracious. I’ve used this phone and it’s a 5/10 at best.

    • Pahech

      If you think of 6.5/10 as a “C” grade, then it makes sense. This phone seems to be a decent entry-level phone, which should warrant this mediocre grade.

      At 5/10 it is pretty much “F”, and I don’t think this is that bad.

  • jb


    I totally agree….seems like its a pretty solid budget smartphone. Nice review mobilesyrup

  • TP

    $370 + monthly BIS fee
    $350 for Nexus S

    Pros: BBM
    Cons: everything else

    • bob

      BBM is a con. It locks you down into a single proprietary platform and you can only chat with other people with a Blackberry.

    • Alex Perrier

      That’s true. With Google Talk, you can text, voice and video chat on Android, Linux, Mac and Windows. It’s just that you need the magical Gingerbread 2.3.4 to do all of this, and unfortunately, not everyone has that. But i still appreciate Google Talk above almost, if not all Internet messengers.

  • Jay

    800Mhz processor with only 512Mb of internal ram? Come on RIM, that’s not even in the ballpark of this year’s technology. New phones are running dual and quad core 1+Ghz processors. You can do better than that. If you’re not going to lead in the industry you’ll just fall further and further behind… (Take note Apple)

  • ind

    Jay, when and where did you hear that the Curve lineup was supposed to lead the pack?! It’s to bridge the new/low smartphone market. Congratulations on missing the point. Ever hear of a Bold?

  • Pahech

    BBs are never really known for their specs. Not that they really need it anyways, since the current OS7 works well enough with the given power and BBs’ bread and butter is certainly not intensive media. A bigger number doesn’t necessary mean a better user experience, although there is of course a correlation.

    Of course, I actually do think that phones such as the Nexus S offers a more complete experience. However, the BIS fee isn’t that bad considering that you can actually save on data, which means you need less of a data plan compared to relatively data-hogging Android and iOS phones. What they need to reduce is the starting cost of the phone though, since equivalent level Android entries are about $100 cheaper, i.e. Samsung Galaxy W at $250.

  • Dan

    There is just something that strikes me as unexciting when it comes to blackberries. I know this is an entry level device, but even their bolds and torches just seem so… bland. They are decent for business people I get that, but why would personal consumers use them? Am I missing something? Is it because they are Canadian? BBM? I don’t get it. I’m holding my SGS2 here as I write this and its like looking at a Lamborghini while the BB in the picture looks like a Fiat.

    • canistel

      You’re kidding me right? I’m holding my bold 9900 in my hand, it has steal on the edge, carbon something or other for the battery cover, keyboard is incredible; your galaxy is nothing but shiny plastic, enjoy.

    • Yeria

      @canistel Really? If you cared so much about build material, why didn’t you go with an iPhone? They use aluminum and glass: how exquisite.

      Seriously, what can you do with your BB that I can’t with even my first generation Galaxy S? Please don’t even start there. Even phones using Froyo fails not more than a BB and Android is supposed to be buggy and unstable. How do I know? Well, I used both.

  • Yeria

    BB is nothing without its email push and keyboard. Since this one seems to have f’ed up the keyboard, I don’t know what’s so great about this phone.

    Being a Canadian tech review site, I must say the wording of the review was very biased to praise a Canadian company. If this was on Engadget, they wouldn’t be pleasantly surprised by any of the feature. If this was a true entry-level phone, the outright price should have been $250 or below. Even Galaxy Ace is $229 outright from Telus right now..and it has better touch screen and design than the new Curve. RIM should know by now they’re actually the underdog. How long will they continue to believe they’re still leading the pack??

  • shawn

    Blackberry phones in my opinion always look and feel like they are solidly built and high end. I only wish they’d up they’re specs and jump on the Android/Wp7 train!

  • John

    IMHO, the scale 10 numbered rating system used by reviewers doesn’t do justice to phones – it’s like grading a student’s essay – user experience is very subjective, even though there are some points for the hardware.

    They should start using letter sets for reviews, e.g. A+, A, B+, B etc. At least it’ll put it into a broader category of phones so that we’re not all comparing every phone with Galaxy Nexus or iPhone 4S.

  • TeknoBug

    3.2″ is too small, the Torch’s 3.7″ is perfect.

  • Dan

    You’re kidding right. Shiny plastic or not, my GS2 has a better and larger screen, it doesn’t think its 2007 anymore in needing a pathetic physical keyboard, its faster in every single aspect, it has more content available, better software that is actually customizable, is somehow lighter and thinner while being an amazing 4’3 inches… Seriously do I need to go on? Do we need to go into software? Apps? You’re kidding here right? tell me you are.

    • Yeria

      To be fair, you’re comparing the flagship phone from Samsung that should be the top of the line phone with a supposed to be entry-level phone from RIM. Galaxy S 2 HAS to be a lot better than this phone. It’s like you’re complaining that Big Mac patty is crappy compared to KEG’s steak after paying $30 more. It’s supposed to be crappy.

    • Yeria

      Oh, and one more thing: I like Android too because I feel it suits my personality the best, but all the advantages can be either topped or nullified by mentioning an iPhone.

      Having a physical keyboard is also NOT pathetic. Lots of companies are still releasing slider smartphones that come with full QWERTY keyboard. People like you are the ones that make Android users look like a bunch of angry geeks. If you want to boast about contents, then Apple says hi.

    • TeknoBug

      Not everyone wants/likes/can use a virtual keyboard, physical keyboard phones are getting rarer but they’re still going to be around for many reasons.

  • Dan

    I was comparing it to his Bold 9900 which is 650$ with no commitment. I paid 550$ for my unlocked GS2. I could compare it to any BB and it would be unfair to the GS2. Its not even in the same league.

    • Yeria

      I’m not sure who you were replying to, but I’m not saying Galaxy S2 is supposed to be any worse than a BB. I know they’re not comparable even if you compare it to the best BB available. I just had the impression that you were comparing it to an entry-level phone, and if you were to argue it that way, it didn’t really hold much water.

  • Dan

    The advantages can be nullified by mentioning an Iphone? Really? A 3.5 inch device with an OS that looks like my GS2’s app drawer and is completely locked down? Not to mention that its more expensive… Am I suppose to be a following sheep too and settle for a crappier device?

    • Yeria

      I’ll have to disagree with you on this one. You’re saying it BECAUSE you like the bigger screen. You say physical keyboard is pathetic BECAUSE you don’t like the physical keyboard.

      I personally feel AMOLED is better than LCD – or Retina, if that’s what people would prefer – and I personally think iPhone’s screen is too small, but that does not justify bigger AMOLED is better.

      Look, I LIKE Android. I use a Galaxy S right now and I’m considering to upgrade mine to Galaxy Nexus. I just want to point out what you’re saying is VERY subjective and that is not the advantage at all. An Apple fan would easily come out and say the Galaxy app drawer came after iPhone and so Galaxy is the one that looks like an iPhone. And we both know how important it is to claim the first in these fan battles.

      App Store has more apps. Whether they’re quality apps or not is debatable but Apple does have more. More contents = More app options for consumer = win, in my book. So, in contents, iPhone still does top Android. When I said “iPhone nullifies”, I didn’t mean iPhone is better. It’s just that iPhone can nullify lots of arguments FOR Android, just like Android can nullify lots of arguments FOR iOS. Some people like locked app drawer. Sure, it beats me, but if they like it locked and unchangeable, who are you to say they’re wrong??

  • Dave

    This review reads like an exercise in excuse making. Particularly galling was this:

    “Comparing the quality to, say, that of entry level Android or Nokia device the Curve’s display is unequivocally better, even if $100 more expensive.”

    Nonesense! This is a brand new $370 phone! What on earth are you comparing it to?

    Even the lowly old LG Optimus One and Samsung Galaxy Gio (each $150 at Koodo and Virgin, respectively) have competent displays with responsive touch sensors. And they’re each $150 (from Koodo and Virgin, respectively), less than half the price of this Curve!

    I haven’t done a comparison, but I’ve never seen the displays on the Optimus One or the Galaxy Gio described as “low-quality, with noticeable gradient banding and a distracting, visible digitizer layer.” Nor have I heard any talk of “a stubborn digitizer that wouldn’t always register our key taps” on those devices.

    A better comparison might be the Nexus S, which you’ll find at $350 from Mobilicity and Koodo — still $20 less than the Curve! Its 4 inch, 800×480 Super AMOLED display was the absolute top of the line when it came out a year ago. Now it has been long since surpassed in Android land, but it still wipes the floor with anything you’ll find on even the most expensive Blackberry. And that’s just the display. We won’t get into CPU, RAM, storage, cameras and software…that would just be too embarrassing.

  • Dan

    Actually the App Store and Android Market are tied for number of apps and the trend for 2012 is the Market surpassing the App Store. Was I being a little strong in my opinion? Yes definately, I will admit that. At the end of the day however, my Galaxy S2 is one device made by one OEM Samsung. But the Android ecosystem as a whole is massive with multiple phones with a variety of specs and features.

    As much as I would love to believe that people might prefer locked and unchangeable, that is only fair if these people know that they have the option to have it unlocked and changeable, while the reality is that many do not know about other options, they are just brainwashed by shoddy marketing.

    At the end of the day if you sit down with both devices and look at what they can and can’t do, the Galaxy S2 can do more than the Iphone 4s. Yes that means you must be a little techsavvy to make it achieve that, but the option is there. Why would anyone conscious, pay more for a device that can do less, where you can get a device that does more for less? If you want the Galaxy S2 to ‘just work’ (borrowing from apple’s marketing here) it does. If you want the Iphone 4s to be your own customized device personalized, rooted tailored to your wildest dreams… you can’t.

    Maybe I’m wrong who’s to say, but really besides for logo on the back of the phone, why would anyone sane do that?

  • captain

    Blackberry models are steadily losing the battery life they once had. I now have no reason to ever buy one.

  • Jimmy

    So this gets a 6.5 and the RAZR gets a 7? I know there different OS’s but really? Your reviews need some editing when comparing to actual up to date devices.

    • Daniel Bader

      Jimmy, all our reviews get scored in relation to their peers. This device is $350. Compared to other $350 it is below average and scores a 6.5

      The RAZR is a high-end Android device, which, compared with an equitable device such as a Galaxy Nexus or HTC Amaze, is an inferior product and deserves a 7/10.

      We are working on changing up our rating system for that exact reason.