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BlackBerry 7100t review

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BlackBerry made a phone that actually resembles a phone? Ask yourself that last question again and you'll understand my sentiments exactly. For years, BlackBerry has been synonymous with the general public as a business oriented device that is too bulky for any other use. The 7100 series steps fresh off the treadmill at 4.7 x 2.3 x 0.7 inches, 4.3 ounces, and on the prowl just in time for the summer. Going with a lighter blue hue, RIM has spiced up the 7100 a little with a grey outline and reflective silver earpiece.

BlackBerry 7100t review
BlackBerry 7100t review
BlackBerry 7100t review
Aside from the streamlined presence, the next most notable attribute is the 20 buttons that compose the keypad. As opposed to predecessors, the 7100 series contains only 2 letters per key at most. Don't get scared, with some time (depending on how used you are to previous BlackBerry keyboards) you just may learn to adapt to it and be amazed how the keypad adapts with SureType predictive text. Goodbye outdated QWERTY keyboards of BlackBerry's past.

BlackBerry 7100t review
Above the keypad is a row with 3 new keys for BlackBerry users – a send button, end button and a T-Zones shortcut to finalize the feel of an actual phone. No longer do you have to hold in the cancel key to end a call, an often overlooked feature missing from previous models.

Aside from the size and keys, there are a few other notable differences from the 7290, including a speakerphone. Because in all honesty, what is an all around business device without the ability to throw together an impromptu conference call. Flanked with a silver mesh and blue covering, the speakerphone is a great addition to this line up.

The 7100t also brings to the table a vibrant LCD that supports 65,000 colors and then some. Looking at the new LCD display indoors, the icons look crisp and inviting. They almost jump out at you in a responsive nature when you drag the cursor over an icon with an animated effect; well a jump in consideration as to what previous BlackBerry display and icons represented. They respond just as quickly when you select an application from the menu with a speedy processor. However, when you step outside with this device you'll find yourself remembering why you bought the 7290 instead. The display is not adaptive with an easy to use backlight brightness button, an addition I would definitely hope to carry over into future models. You can manually change the brightness in the settings options, but nothing is more convenient that a single click to solve your problem. Walking out the door of your office to your car, you will find by the time you are able to place a call you may already be home due to the LCDs limited view in the outdoors.

BlackBerry 7100t review
On the top of the device is power button that when tapped dims the vibrant screen and when held down will power off the device after a few seconds. The left of the device contains the usual 2.5mm jack and USB connection for syncing and charging. On the right, you have the familiar trackwheel and escaped keys which act as your main navigational controls. The trackwheel seems adaptive and fast to reactive, which is a positive feature when scrolling through a lengthy application list.

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posted on 20 Oct 2010, 01:55

1. Jim Trotter (unregistered)


I've had this phone for a while and enjoy it thoroughly. Though I am switching to the Pearl, this was a very well written article.

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Display240 x 260 pixels LCD
Size4.70 x 2.30 x 0.80 inches
(119 x 59 x 21 mm)
4.20 oz  (120 g)

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