If you want a phone that actually works! October 13, 2011
There is no better phone than the Bold 9930. Best antenna ever -- fewer dropped calls. Longer battery life. And best of all, the best keyboard ever offered on a phone. This is without a doubt the best phone I've ever used. That is, if you really need a phone that works as a communication tool, as opposed to an app-running toy.
Best phone ever February 19, 2012
Reviewer: Daniel J. Kinem
It was contract renewal time, so visions of new phones for myself and my family danced through my head. I'd been pouring over every detail of the droid phones and the iPhone. My 14 year old son asked..."Aren't they running out of things for phones to do?" I laughed, but then I thought about his question.
It's a loaded question and I knew what he was getting at. The silliness of the phone 'pissing contest' with all the youtube videos comparing one to another. The giant screens. Useless gimmicks like `Siri'
I decided to stop, take a breath, and decide what I truly needed in a PHONE. I had 160 apps on my Droid and I literally used about 10-15 of those. The rest were part of the 'pissing contest' ("Hey, do you see what my phone can do!? Bro-stache! Voice warping software! 3D games!")
I needed 100% accuracy in texts and emails. Clear phone calls. At least a workdays worth of battery life (10 hours of heavy usage). Contacts and calendar sync with gmail. `To do' list. The ability to handle multiple email accounts, including Exchange. A simple, decent camera. Medical apps like Epocrates. Music apps like Pandora, Shazaam, Slacker radio. Utilities like Evernote, Dropbox. You get the idea. Mostly as a functioning phone, a real phone with organizing tools, but with a few entertainment things.
First let me say that it is truly a beautiful phone. Slim, sleek, stunning design. One of the best LOOKING phones ever. The touch screen is vivid, crisp, and clear.
Now, about my `needs' from my PHONE.
Accuracy. I am a physican at a busy hospital and we communicate with each other EXTENSIVELY via text throughout the day. The main problem I'd had with my Droid Incredible was the virtual keyboard. If I spent an hour a day texting, literally 15 minutes of that time would be erasing incorrect 'auto corrections'. My thumbs will never get smaller, I will always hit the wrong keys on a virtual keyboard. I had several keyboards on the Droid with very sophisticated prediction software, learning the words I used most, etc. It will never be good enough. iPhone keyboard is far worse, with absolutely horrid options for customization. Blackberry 9930 keyboard is the best thing I've ever typed on. I've never used a BB before but I took to it instantly.
Instead of BB's stupid Bold commercial showing bicyclists with glow-in-the-dark wheels driving around, they need to show me at the hospital smashing my virtual keyboard phone against the wall....then cut away to me smiling as I discover what typing on a phone can be like. Stunning. If texting, emailing, and accuracy are important to you, don't underestimate this keyboard as it truly separates this phone from anything else available.
Clear, loud phone calls. EXCELLENT noise reduction. People hear me and I hear them. Perfect.
Battery is decent. BB users are not thrilled because they are spoiled with 2 days of use in their old, slow, no feature phones. This thing is fast, with a brilliant screen, and it needs juice. I am thrilled with it because I come from the land of Droid where you have to charge the phone multiple times per day. It gets me through long days. I bought the extra battery with dual charger from Amazon, but I have not had to use the second battery yet. There's a HUGE extended battery available, but it makes it look nuts. Some people don't mind, but I love the sleek look, so I will never get that.
Syncs with gmail, contacts, calendar. Not as smoothly/thoroughly as Droid devices, of course, but it works very well.
Multiple email accounts no problem. POP, IMAP, Exchange.
LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the camera! It doesn't have `auto focus' it has some sort of way to focus on everything at the same time. Forget what they call it? IT DOES NOT TAKE CLOSE-UP PICTURES WELL! So, if you are buying your phone with a need for close-up photos, this phone will not suit you. The dedicated camera key is soooo convenient. Why is this not on every phone? Fast, clear, fun to take pictures.
BB app world has an atrocious set up. It's confusing, some apps are not represented in BB app world, you have to go to the developer web site to get many programs, app world constantly signs you out when you are browsing on the computer, etc. But most of the major apps are available, and they work fine. Everything I need is available. You too will be fine with apps, it will just take a little digging. App world needs some work.
OH, one of the things I love the absolute most about this phone is the INSTANT UNIVERSAL SEARCH! Start typing and the phone starts searching your apps, your texts/emails, contacts, etc for matches. You can set it up so it searches just the things you want it to search. It's amazing and it's INSTANT. It's better than iPhone's swipe (that's already an extra step), and type (on the virtual keyboard that sucks), and it includes INSTANT WEB SEARCHES AS YOU TYPE VIA BING!! Amazing. (As an aside, I love google search and I think you can set it to that, but I'm finding Bing's TV commercials are pretty accurate. I'm getting too much irrelevant information on google. Bing is pretty impressive.)
I suggest you sit down and write out what you need from your phone. This BB will NEVER beat iPhone and the latest Droids for speed, apps, screen size, gaming. But, it doesn't need to because it's a better PHONE.
Love this phone. My wife got the Galaxy Nexus as did one of my sons. My other boy got an iPhone 4S. I feel that my choice is a better actual functioning phone. I LOVE IT. However, I won't win the `pissing contest' as they are downloading the latest 3D Magic 8-ball app.
Best Smartphone in the Market October 14, 2011
Reviewer: Andrew "AndyRew510" (New York) -
This is the best smartphone on the market hands down, in particular, for someone who is not in love with typing emails on a touch screen only phone. This device provides the best of both worlds - (1) a QWERTY keyboard that no one can dispute is the best keyboard on the market (its smoothness and ease of typing is incredible and even vastly better than earlier blackberries) and (2) a crystal clear touch screen. It is also razor thin and incredibly sleek looking. While the outages this past week may turn some people off, RIM will surely do whatever they can to make sure that never happens again (and that is was a rare occurrence), and despite the outage, RIM's email service is still the best in the game. Instant push emails allows users to respond quickly and not get behind when emails pile up. The new operating system and browser is a vast improvement as well.
As I said above, in my opinion, this is the best smartphone in the market.
Best Phone of All December 17, 2011
Reviewer: Thierry Corbeau
Dream phone. This is it. For anyone who first and foremost needs a communications device, there is none better. The iPhone and Android toy phones are ok too, of course, for those who first want a toy and the bigger the better. But, hey, there are so many better toys for that, why even bother to us a phone for that.
This Blackberry is a reliable and easy to use communicator first. Everything else is a bonus, from beautiful styling, display, thousands of decent apps and incredible functionality. Sure there are some should haves and would haves but they're quickly forgotten once you start using this beauty. The incredible feel of cool-to-the-touch stainless steel and classy look of the 9930 make most the latest plastic brick-sized smart?phones feel cheap and tacky, never mind what's inside.
Yes, they have slicker browsers and media. But the Bold is no slouch. The native browser is a vast improvement and others, such as Opera Mini also work extremely well. No complaints there at all. If you need physical keys, the keyboard makes you want keep on typing and typing. Nothing else like it out there. The battery will last way into the night even with heavy usage and a good deal of browsing news and information. Heavy video streaming is another story, but again, this is supposed to be a communications device first.
After trying all the latest smartphones over the years, including iPhone, it's hard to imagine a connected life without this BB. It seems like the perfect balance between productivity and entertainment. In meetings, it makes you wish for urgent calls and messages, just to pull it out and be noticed and envied by the toy owners.
Not an iPhone, but close enough for now December 29, 2011
Reviewer: Jean E. Pouliot (Newburyport, MA United States) -
I happen to be part of a family that loves the iPhone. BUT, I work at a corporation that committed early to the Blackberry, and has not yet developed the infrastructure to support the iPhone. So when my 2-year-old BB finally croaked a couple of months back, I was stuck getting another Blackberry. I asked around and was told that of the available replacement choices, the BB 9930 was the most iPhone-like.
And it is.
Which is not to say that its workings and apps are equivalent to the iPhone's! But they are sufficiently close that I finally feel I have mostly caught up. I now have OK camera functions, music, internet, and the ability to synch with my laptop's Outlook mail, calendar, contacts and phone. But the deficiencies, slight though they night be, are obvious. My recent phone list sometimes, but not always, shows my latest calls. The camera's ability to post pix to Facebook comes and goes. The GUI that lets me set an alarm is backwards to what my intuition would dictate. And without built-in iPod and iTunes, managing my music is just not what I want. In nearly all ways, the slickness, workmanship and love that makes the iPhone such a delight to use is lacking.
But on the positive side, I can swipe my fingers across the touch-sensitive screen and view new content. Typing on the physical keyboard might even be preferable to the iPhone's virtual keyboard. And Blackberry's cursor control, in which a wheel or pad allows a fingertip to move the cursor, actually allows more text editing flexibility than the iPhone's clunky-by-comparison I-bar placement. I am pleased with the sound quality of the phone and the ease of switching to speakerphone mode.
For what it's worth, I still think the iPhone is a superior machine. But in the interim - until my company decides to support Apple products - the 9930 will do nicely.
(FYI: the 5-star ratuing is really 4.5 stars.)
Best of both Worlds (Keyboard and Touch Screen) June 3, 2012
Reviewer: Kermit the Frog (Southeast US) -
Reasons I chose to upgrade from my BlackBerry Tour to this phone, over an iPhone:
1. OS 7 is fast.
2. Sleek design.
3. Physical Keyboard is awesome. Can't stand typing or, even worse, editing on a virtual keyboard.
4. Global roaming capable.
5. Removable (i.e. easily upgradeable and inexpensive) microSD.
6. Standard microUSB, not proprietary connector / charger.
7. Touchpad is aweseome.
8. Touch screen is a bonus.
9. BlackBerry Bridge to work with my PlayBook.
10. BES (BlackBerry Enterprise Server) delivers INSTANT email. No other phone works that quickly, often with a 2-10 minute delay. Very important to me to keep up at work. Also most tightly integrated with Outlook (even pictures of my contacts are on my BB).
So far, I have not had any reliability issues. Apps are limited compared to the iPhone but majority of those I need are available. The ones that are missing for the BB tend to be more entertaining (e.g. Angry Birds) than useful tools.
Beautiful Hardware, Flawed Software and Service January 20, 2012
Reviewer: Angelique (New York, NY United States) -
The IPhone software and apps are the most elegant in the world. Pair that with the hardware on this phone, it's gorgeously tactile keyboard and slim shape, and the Bold 9930 would be perfect. Just because I don't think there is a smartphone with a hard keyboard out there that is better than a Blackberry, I wish that RIM would sell itself to someone who knows how to write software and provide excellent service. I don't want the Blackberry to be a Palm also-ran.
Having owned an IPhone, I miss the intuitiveness and the richness of the apps. I'm not a frivolous phone person - I want financial apps, organizational apps, health apps, but it's clear that app providers smell blood on RIM. Why spend the effort on a dying platform? But the Apps that are there are wonderful: Facebook, Twitter, Google Talk, Google Voice, BBM, Google Maps, Wikitude...
Beware however - there is a known defect on the Bold 9930 that causes it to brick (yes - completely and utterly useless) if its battery drains and you charge it overnight. The only recourse is to have Verizon send you a new phone (under warranty). I have just updated the OS on my 9930 to OS 7.1, which I hope addresses the issue. It wasn't fun having no phone for 3 days while I waited for my replacement. There are people who have gone through 2-3 phones this way. The update did not go smoothly (contrast with IPad, Mac, IPhone updates which are impeccable), but eventually got it working.
I hope our perseverance pays off - and the brand goes to a deserving party that knows how to please its loyalists and make defectors take another look.
Great Business Phone July 30, 2012
Had the Curve 9930. Tried a Droid. Back to Blackberry. This is a great phone, not a toy... If you want to watch Netflix, get a 60" TV. This phone rocks and the keypad does make life easy for all of the E-Mail I do... They do make a solid product for the Serious Business Man...
Crooked trackpad is indicative of QC problems September 22, 2012
Reviewer: S. Weaver (Stone Mountain, GA United States) -
The trackpads on both of the 9930's I bought from Amazon third party sellers featured slightly crooked trackpads in the counter-clockwise direction.
On one of them, the sensitivity of the trackpad itself was way too low - I wouldn't have realized this if not for the other 9930 I tried, on which the trackpad, while crooked, was quick and fluid.
But on the phone with the good (but crooked) trackpad, the Back button was squeaky when you press it - very, VERY annoying.
Blackberry's Quality Control actually let these things ship like that? Unacceptable.
Then there's the atrociously designed (search doesn't even really work) and underwhelming Blackberry App-World - clearly developers have forsaken the entire platform, including Google (an ancient version of google maps).
I am pretty sure I'm within my rights to expect squared up geometry and non-flimsy, rock solid buttons, but apparently RIM can't compete in the build-quality area anymore, and these things cost too much for anything less than perfect.
The camera lacks auto-focus, another critical error, although it still beats Motorola cameras (which ain't sayin' much).
Best Blackberry EVER! February 29, 2012
Reviewer: nan_c77 "Artsy Girl" (Lafayette, IN USA) -
I have been a Blackberry users for YEARS. I had the Torch 9800 for about a year, hating it every day .... When I saw this phone for one penny on Amazon, I jumped on the chance to get it. I LOVE THIS PHONE!!