Product Type: Blackberry Smartphone
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Blackberry torch....I love it!
Blackberry Torch 9800
Member Name: louisechackett
Blackberry Torch 9800
Advantages: looks great, does all I could want it to do, great battery
Disadvantages: very occasionally freezes but what can you expect!
I have been putting off writing this review for some time really because I am not sure if I will be able to say all that I want to say and do this phone justice but I am about to "man up" and I am going to give it my best shot! I have been on a contract for my mobile phone for many years now and when it was time to upgrade my phone I was pretty certain that I wanted a Blackberry despite the fact that I had heard many people have had issues with them being temperamental to say the least. The latest Blackberry available to me was the torch which has both the standard looking qwerty keypad as well as the option to use the phone touch screen as well and so I opted for that.
==Packaging and instructions==
The phone arrived quickly from O2 and came packaged in a small classy looking black box which had blackberry and the blackberry logo written across the front in a silver colour.
Inside the box was obviously the phone, the charger which comes with a travel adapter for some countries as well, the battery, headphones, the wire to link the phone up to your computer as well as some instructions.
I have to say that I was more than impressed that when I inserted my sim card in to the phone and the battery that the phone began to load straight away so I was able to have a bit of a play with the phone immediately.
The instructions for the phone are basic at best. I was really surprised that they were not more comprehensive really because of the fact that the phone is a smart phone and obviously had some features which at first seemed quite complex to be honest. I literally muddled through wondering would I ever be able to use a qwerty key pad OR touch screen as I hadn't had either before and was beginning to wonder had I perhaps made a mistake but I soon got the hang of it and within 24 hours I vowed I would never want another phone apart from a blackberry again!
When you first start up the phone it does take you through some set up options such as linking your email account to the phone as well as facebook should you have it. You will also be able to look at your contacts saved to your sim card but they all went in crazy on my phone with first names last and all manner of other little symbols in between so I had to edit most of them which took me some time but now it is done it is all fine.
==What does it look like?==
The blackberry torch is a pretty nice looking piece of equipment I have to say. It is approximately around 11cm by 6cm and comparable to the size of the iphone although it is possibly slightly smaller. The size of the touch screen is pretty much the same size as the phone give or take a few millimetres on each side so it is a good sized screen on which you are able to see exactly what is going on.
The phone looks quite chunky and this is because it is also a slide phone and once you slide it down the traditional blackberry qwerty keypad is revealed. You do not need to use this keypad if you don't want because as I mentioned the phone is also touch screen so you can make calls, text and access the menu and applications all from the main screen so it is purely a personal preference. I tend to use the qwerty key pad personally but sometimes switch to touch screen and it really just depends on my mood.
The front of the phone has a few buttons being the green and red buttons used to make and end call, the blackberry logo which is used for most things within this phone such as switching applications, closing them down properly and functions within applications. There is a button which is also used for scrolling around the screen if you don't want to use the touch screen mode and also a return button. On the side there is a space to charge the phone as well as buttons to change the volume on the phone.
I love the way my blackberry torch looks. It is shiny and glossy for the most part but my one very slight issue is that the back cover is made from a different almost rippled plastic and it feels very thin and less well made than the rest of the phone. I have now got a plastic cover on the phone as well as a screen protector because I don't want the phone to become damaged so it is less of an issue now but it is something to be mindful of.
==So, what can the phone do?==
Well, what can't it do is probably more the question and I will try my best to cover the aspects of the phone here:
Making calls is really easy using the blackberry torch. You have three options which are basically to use the key pad to dial a number, to go in to your call lists to call someone you may have recently been in contact with, or you can go to your contacts list and contact someone through there. All of these options are based within the phone menu and so it is simple to choose which one you wish to use. You simply touch the contact who you wish to call if you choose this option and it will begin the call immediately.
Call quality is good with this phone and I haven't had any issues with not being able to hear someone whilst on the phone. When you are on the phone you do have the option of turning the speaker on the phone making it more of a conference call or muting the call or holding the call. On a couple of occasions I have managed to mute the call without realising but this is literally something that happens so infrequently and it doesn't detract from the phone at all.
Texting using this phone is simple too. You simply click the text message application in the main screen and click the new message icon and then either use the qwerty key pad or touch screen to type who you wish to contact and your message.
I personally find the qwerty keypad easier to use but the touch screen is actually really responsive. I had thought that my fingers would miss the letters and I would not be able to send a message quickly but that is not the case at all and it surprised me how accurate it was to be honest.
I love this feature! It is basically a blackberry only application where by if you add someone to your friends list by using their personal pin number which all blackberry's come with you can contact them as you wish with no charge. It is like texting but you don't have to use a text message to do it and you can also send pictures, videos and voice notes to people on your list so it is a really handy thing to have. I rarely text these days as most of my friends have blackberry's!
=social networking and email=
The phone has facebook and twitter built in so if you have accounts you can link them to your phone and it will notify you should someone contact you via these options. There is also a social network application inbuilt so if you click this it will tell you updates from facebook, twitter and your blackberry messenger friends all in one place which is handy but not something I tend to use much for some reason!
You can of course still access the facebook and twitter sites using the internet but I prefer to use the applications now whilst I am on my phone as it seems smoother and more reliable for the most part.
When I set up my torch I linked it to my main email account as well so every time I get a message to my inbox it comes to my phone as well. At times I can find this annoying when it is something that isn't very important but for the most part it is a handy feature as I would often forget to check my emails and this way I can use my phone to reply to people as soon as they send me a message if needs be. This method has proved to be just as accurate as using my computer so far for me.
=games and applications=
The torch has two games built in to it which are brickbreaker and word mole. These are both quite addictive and a handy boredom breaker at times. However, the torch has a built in application store feature and so you can go on there to download other games, recipes, jokes, even books and things should you wish to. Some of the applications are free and some aren't but it is worth having a browse sometimes to see if anything grabs your attention.
You tube and BBC iplayer are also built in to the phone and I am often searching for things on you tube using my phone. I don't really use the iplayer much purely because the screen is so small it seems a bit pointless but it would be something I would do for my son if we were travelling and he was bored or something.
There is a google application also in the main menu of the phone which is something I use a lot!
The phone does have a media player within it so I have linked the phone to my computer and added many songs to my phone so that I can listen to my music whilst I am setting up the shop at work or whilst doing housework at home. You can play the music through the speakers on the phone or use the earphones provided.
You can use your own music as ring tones for the phone should you wish and can even assign different ring tones to different people!
The torch has a 5.0 mega pixel camera which isn't wonderful by todays standards I guess and my old phone had a much better camera on it but to be honest the photos that I take using my phone are of a perfectly acceptable quality as far as I am concerned and I am happy with it. I don't use my phone to take high quality shots anyway and would always have my camera with me for anything I was expecting to have to take a lot of photos of so this camera is fine for a mobile as far as I am concerned.
The phone also has a video camera function in it and so I have some lovely little videos of my son singing and dancing on my phone and these are good quality too as both the sound and the picture is clear.
=other things to mention=
The phone has a calendar feature which I hated at first as it always seems to pop up on the main screen but to be honest I find it really handy now as it will remind you about events that are coming up.
It has a clock so you can set an alarm for the mornings which having a six year old isn't something I usually need but it is a good tool none the less!
There is also a maps application which can be useful, if you give it time to track you, to find your way if you are lost.
I love this phone, I really do love it and I don't think that I would be with another phone now (which is perhaps a good job as I can't upgrade until 2013 anyway!)
The battery life on the phone is really good. I find that with normal day to day use which includes checking facebook a few times, sending texts or blackberry messenger messages that the battery can last me for two days. If I am at work then I have to say I play on my phone a whole lot more and will access dooyoo to read and rate some reviews for example and so this takes more of the battery life and then I will charge it over night ready for the next day. One tip I do have is to make sure you use the blackberry menu button to close down applications properly or they will be running in the background and will drain your battery quicker.
Occasionally the phone does freeze and the only way to fix this is to remove the battery and allow the phone to reboot. I rarely have to do this and to be honest I don't think you can expect anything else from a phone which does so much anyway.
I have my phone on contract with O2 where I got the phone for free (after some haggling!) and I pay £31 a month and for that I get unlimited calls, texts and internet so I think I got a decent deal to be honest. If you wanted to buy this phone on pay as you go you are looking at around £300 for it.
I genuinely would recommend this phone to anyone. It does so much but it is not too in your face and you only need allow it to do as much as you want it to. There is no need to allow it to access your emails if you don't want but for me it helps so I do. It is certainly the item I seem to need the most these days when I am out and about.
Apologies that this review is so long, I do hope I have covered everything without boring everyone to sleep!
Thank you for reading!
Summary: I love my BB!
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