As the search continues for an iPhone killer, the ball is in Blackberry’s court. The Storm has made a valiant effort, and once again, it’s a solution that’s just not as good as the iPhone.
The Blackberry Storm has implemented a new type of touchscreen. To beat the problems of a lack of accuracy that have faced other touchscreen phones, the Storm touchscreen is a two-step process. First, an item can be selected on the screen by placing a finger over it. The item will be highlighted to ensure that it is in fact the user meant to select. Then, the user presses down on the screen over the selected area and voila, item selected. While it works the majority of the time, but is a real pain and takes too much time and effort.
Blackberry phones are above all work phones, so the cross over to a fun, application based toy like the iPhone felt a bit awkward. Instead of being all work or all play, the Storm lost itself somewhere in the middle, making it a bit of a pain to access e-mails and the business functions, but equally as uninteresting to play games and use the other fun-based apps.
Typing on the Storm’s touch keypad is fairly simple, the implemented touch-and-tap system making accuracy all the easier. However, there are three types of messaging styles: the vertical QWERTY keyboard similar to the one used for the Blackberry Pearl can either be set to auto-text or normal and a horizontal full QWERTY keyboard. The problem with the three types of keypads is they are not universally implemented on the phone, and it is hard to be sure which type is being used.
The Storm is heavier than the other touchscreen phones out there, weighing in at 5.5 ounces. For someone used to the tiny Krazor, its 4.43″ by 2.45″ body was too awkward to hold comfortably.
The Storm’s 3.25 in. screen plays video and displays pictures beautifully, it’s auto-focus feature on its 3.2 mega pixel camera makes taking photos far easier than your standard camera phone fare and its music player booms sound out sufficiently. Verizon’s great VZ Navigator GPS feature tends to be a little laggy on the Storm, stating after a street is passed that it was the proper one to turn down. Blackberry’s venture into the touch screen is valiant and solid, it just doesn’t have anything unique to set it apart from the competition.
Technically speaking, the Storm is a great phone. It doesn’t have any major flaws, and is sufficient for any phone users daily needs. However, that is as far as it goes. It does not have any stand-out features to set it above the rest of the touch screen phones out there. It certainly is not the best, though it weighs in about second in the race for the best touch phone on the market.
For Verizon customers, the Storm is better than the LG Dare, but no one has yet to come close to topping Apple and its iPhone.