Tag - Storm
RIM's new BlackBerry Torch line is a reboot for the company. After the Storm and Storm2 failed to stem the tide of the iPhone and later Android, the new Torch shows signs RIM has learned its lesson: a faster processor, a touch interface, and the death of its infamous click-down screen. But is it enough? Our review of the Torch 9850 and 9860 will see if RIM is back in form or if its rivals are still moving faster.
The first official phone running Android's Ice Cream Sandwich update, alternately called the Google Nexus Prime or Samsung Droid Prime, may ship to Verizon roughly in sync with the iPhone 5. A rumor from a reported Verizon corporate worker claims that the flagship should be available "around [the] release of iPhone 5." He also told Droid-Life that there weren't indications at his level of the Droid badging reserved for Verizon-only phones, although he didn't rule it out.
RIM may see a bounce back in the market simply out of carrier worries of an Apple and Google duopoly, Sterne Agee analyst Shaw Wu learned on Friday. After talking to carriers, he heard that networks are worried about the "growing dominance" of Android and the iPhone and were sorely looking for a third option to keep competition up. With Nokia not due to ship its first Windows Phones until September, he said, the BlackBerry could benefit simply by being a well-established company with a recently revamped phone line.
RIM greatly widened its smartphone mix on Wednesday with two more BlackBerry 7 devices. The 9850 and 9860 are the first touch-only phones from RIM to get a high-resolution screen: either has a 480x800 LCD that finally makes them competitive with modern Android hardware and more comparable to the iPhone. The two likewise drop the often criticized click-down SurePress screen from the Storm and use multi-touch instead, much like the Torch 9810.
The iPad 2 launch may have scuppered the launch plans for the HTC Thunderbolt this week, according to an unearthed memo. A roadmap showing "the next big thing" at the carrier has the company's attentions devoted all to the Apple tablet's release this week. The Thunderbolt was next in the Droid-Life shot but didn't have a timetable attached.
Marvell in its financial results call on Friday may have given signs that RIM is stepping away from high-end BlackBerry phones. CEO Sehat Sutardja blamed a steeper than expected 34 percent revenue drop primarily on RIM moving to "entry-level smartphones," where Marvell doesn't have chips to offer. Most of Marvell's designs in the BlackBerry line have focused on flagships like the Bold and Torch.
RIM's long in the making BlackBerry Storm3 has appeared in the flesh on Friday through a video (below). Along with confirming its combination of a keyboard-free design with a trackpad, the slip shows the extra screen area afforded by the 3.7-inch, 480x800 display. It clearly represents a Verizon prototype and has both the Verizon logo and on-phone theming along with a "live air activation" market indicating that it was ready to work on the CDMA and EVDO networks, hinted by a 3G badge in the upper right of the display.
A slate of leaks from a T-Mobile "See BlackBerry Different" event may have confirmed that it will have much of the 2011 BlackBerry roadmap on its schedule. The BlackBerry PlayBook would come to the carrier, but would unusually be the Wi-Fi only version. While not explained by PocketBerry's insider, it may be sold as a companion for those who already have a BlackBerry phone to tether with the tablet.
A purportedly escaped roadmap for Verizon has given out possible timetables for some of its most important phones, including ones it hasn't yet announced. The rumored Droid Incredible sequel might ship in the first quarter of March despite remaining an official secret. The buttonless touchscreen device is rumored by Phone Arena to be a world phone with both CDMA and GSM.
RIM's on-again, off-again BlackBerry Storm3 has reappeared in yet another leak on Friday with signs that it could be RIM's most advanced BlackBerry ever. Matching early rumors, BGR heard it would have the highest resolution display of any BlackBerry at 800x480, keeping it step with most Android phones but below the iPhone 4. Speed would also be recouped through the same 1.2GHz processor and dual-band 802.11n Wi-Fi as the Torch 2.