Monday, October 28, 2013

Review: BlackBerry Curve 8520

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Having trolled many a football journalist relentlessly with my trusted BlackBerry Bold, I got a taste of my own troll medicine when the damn thing died on me, and stopped working, with nothing but an error message. I followed the instructions on online, but to no avail, the old BlackBerry was well and truly busted. As such, I had to revert back to my pink Samsung Tocco, which had most certainly seen better days, and with it, couldn’t access the internet. I found myself texting my tweets, and come on, that is just so two thousand and late.

Deciding I could cope no longer without a Smartphone, I took my dad’s BlackBerry and got it unlocked for a tenner in Chinatown. It was contracted solely to Orange, but now I can use it, and, whilst it is inferior to the BlackBerry I had previously in pretty much every way, anything beats the three months of torture when I had to survive with a phone that… didn’t have internet on it.

Having used both a BlackBerry Bold and Curve, then, I feel myself to be somewhat of an authority in comparing and contrasting the two, like they’re two romantic era poems and I’m sitting an English literature exam. Well, my previous BlackBerry was definitely more stylish. It was more streamlined, weighed less, and just looked sexier in its case, whereas the Curve looks like a brick compared to modern smartphones.

Furthermore, whereas the keys on my BlackBerry Bold were linked together seamlessly and made practically no sound when I touch-typed on them, I have no such luck with the BlackBerry Curve, where the keys protrude, and each time you touch one of the plastic keys it makes an audible sound. Not good, especially at work when I’m trying to surreptitiously send a text without the bosses knowing.

The fact that the Bold was introduced later than the Curve is also apparent in the Curve’s deficiencies in functionality. On my Bold, I was used to going to sleep, being awoken by various alerts from Twitter/email/Facebook/WhatsApp/texts, and just hitting one bar to see them all listed together. We do not get this with the Curve, where instead I have to manually check each individual thing. It’s fractionally more time consuming, but it’s just the psychological element of being ~in control of mai social networks~~~; I miss being able to see everything, on one page, and deciding which I’ll choose to reply to first. Other downsides of the Curve? I can't download songs, I can't load webpages with too many graphics, and there's no such thing as a Favourites bar, meaning I have to keep wasting time selecting an icon when I need it. Grr.

There is, however, one aspect at which the Curve trumps the Bold, and it’s a pretty major one: battery life. When I had my 9790, I would have to carry the charger with me everywhere because the damn thing lasted about four hours, on a good day. It let to much faction with my parents, who like to know where I am EVERY SECOND OF THE DAY, despite the fact that I’m 23. With the 8520, I’m actually able to give them the façade of thinking they know where I am, as the battery is much more durable. So, for all my gripes about how uncool it is, when it comes to the basics, BlackBerry did good on the Curve.

My contract expires in March, and whilst the BlackBerry 8520 is perfectly functional, safe to say, I will be down the mobile phone at the crack of dawn to get an upgrade. It’s not so much that the phone is terrible, more, we are spoilt with the plethora of genius phones on the market. In 2013, something like the BlackBerry Curve simply doesn’t cut it anymore.

Grade: D

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