There are spec hungry buyers. I’m not one of them. So it’s easy for me to forgive the fact that the new BlackBerry 9720 comes with a processor that’s about a third as fast as the new Nexus 5 from Google. The memory at 512 MB doesn’t look great on the spec sheet either. But hey, if it does the job, it’s good for me.
This phone is handy and lightweight. It gives you a full physical Qwerty experience which many people like. Older BlackBerry users who are switching to a newer device will love the phone. But it’s hardly a phone that will pull you back into BlackBerry ecosystem if you’ve been on Android or iOS. This isn’t nearly as much fun as newer phones are expected to be. Bit business like, if you wish.
As other reviewers have pointed out, the phone does look like the Curve phones launched by BlackBerry. The optical track-pad, which you will find on many of the older BlackBerry devices is great. Somehow it’s easier to use the track-pad than to reach out to the touch screen.
The battery lasts through the day and seems more efficient compared to the Android phone that I have. It’s got an HTML browser, stereo FM radio, GPS and comes in different colors like Black, White, Purple, Blue and Pink. The phone doesn’t support Java. It plays a standard range of audio and video files but isn’t really the ideal phone for someone who is looking for a phone that will play anything that you throw at it.
For data, you can connect to the Wi-Fi, EDGE or GPRS. It doesn’t have NFC but that’s something not too many will miss in India.
The biggest downer for me is that the phone doesn’t run on the new BlackBerry 10 operating system. It runs on BlackBerry 7.1 OS, which is pretty much the older operating system with some new features. The 7.1 Operating system allows you to post updates on the BlackBerry Messenger, Facebook and Twitter at the same time. It’s being called Multicast on the system.
Others have complained of a lag in the phone at times, but I didn’t find any over the last week or so. But keep in mind that I haven’t put it to heavy use with lots of apps.
It has a nice 5 mega pixel camera with image stabilization to take good pictures with. Pictures taken in low light are grainy as it is the case with similar cameras. Compared to the 8 mega pixel cameras on cheap Android phones, this camera performs much better. It is made of plastic but the build and design is sturdy except for the back cover which comes off a bit too easily.
The phone was released for about Rs 16,000. But prices have already dropped to about Rs 15,000 online. The verdict? Definitely not a phone for me. But BlackBerry boys, if there are any left, might like.
Key Specs of BlackBerry 9720
Battery: Li-Ion 1450 mAh
CPU 806 MHz Tavor MG1
Dimensions: 114 x 66 x 12 mm, 120 g
Display: 480 x 360 px, IPS Capacitive, 2.8 inches
Keyboard: Physical Qwerty
Memory: MicroSD up to 32 GB, 512 Internal, 512 MB RAM
OS BlackBerry OS 7.1
Release: August 2013
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