RIM BlackBerry Storm2 9550 Review
This is the first device to ship with the new BlackBerry 5.0 OS, though the Storm did get upgraded a few days before the Storm2 launch. Users won’t notice much difference in the new software, and much like 4.6/7 was an incremental step from 4.5 which was an incremental step from 4.3 which… you get the picture, 5.0 isn’t a big jump. Threaded text messaging is finally supported, a much needed addition especially in such a messaging-centric lineup. Other official enhancements include “multi-touch text selection enhancements (for copy/paste,)” “fine Cursor Control (for text editing)” and “updated spin boxes (clock, calendar, date/time, etc.)” Copy and paste is indeed easier to use, but for the most part it is just more spit and polish on an outdated operating system.
On the flip side, there’s something to be said about not fixing something that isn’t broken. This is the zippiest BlackBerry we’ve used to date. Menu animations are slick, scrolling is smooth (though we would have liked to see it go faster) and we experienced little to no lag. What they do they do well, we’ll give them that.
Phonebook and Organizer:
Again, there isn’t much new to report here. It’s as simple and straightforward as ever, and you can store virtually an unlimited amount of contacts. Each contact can hold three email addresses, two work phone numbers, two home numbers, a mobile, pager, fax and “other” number as well as a space for a BlackBerry PIN number. There is a slot for both a home and work address, as well as dates for anniversary and birthdays. Contacts can be sorted by user definable categories, each entry can have a custom ringer and picture ID, and there is a section for a webpage and notes.
Like the Storm 9530, homescreen contact search is missing on the Storm2. The keyboard is accessible when in the full menu, but it will not search the contacts by either name or number. Instead, when you click on any letter it will take you to the phone application. This is a shame, because it’s one of the little features we really like about the BlackBerry OS. Voice dialing is handled by Nuance (formally VoiceSignal) and is excellent. The left soft key is still preprogrammed to activate it, and it is still slightly annoying but the higher button placement leads to much less unintended presses.
Like the phonebook, the calendar function is very robust. It can be managed either on your phone or on your PC, and when paired to a BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES) it can be remotely managed and synced over the air. Creating an appointment is simple, and options such as reminders and recurrence are present. Appointments can also be marked as private for added security.
Other basic PIM functions are available, such as Tasks and a Memo Pad. Tasks is very basic, but reminders can be set and they can also be grouped into categories. The Memo Pad is a basic notepad, no bells and whistles, and a basic calculator is also available.
There have been some enhancements in the SMS app, most notably the threaded text messaging. The user has more control over notifications now as well, for instance they can set the alert to repeat (from 1-10 times) for each type of message (SMS, email, etc.) as well as for individual contacts. Smiles have been enhanced as well.
As you would expect the Storm2 9550 supports every form of messaging out there. There are the standards (SMS, MMS), personal and corporate email via BIS and BES, BlackBerry Messenger, and popular IM clients such as Google Talk and AIM. All of these are actually fairly pleasurable to use now that RIM has worked out that whole keyboard thing!
1. secondcor517 (Posts: 94; Member since: 06 Oct 2008)
i think it's slightly moronic to make one of your cons that "It works now, but we’re still not sold on the whole clickable touchscreen idea". This is supposed to be a review of the phone, it should be impartial. the fact that you included a feeling as a pro or con, clearly shows that your review is anything but impartial. if it didn't work, then that would be a con. leave your personal beliefs out of the equation so that we as the reader have a chance to decide for ourselves.
9. Iphone User (unregistered)
IS A SHIT PHONE, BOUGHT IT OFF EBAY AND IT STARTED GIVING ME PROBLEMS FROM THE START. TELL YOU THE TRUTH THE WORLD'S ISN'T READY FOR A TOUCH PHONE.....NOT FROM BLACKBERRY ATLEAST
2. shgam2 (Posts: 42; Member since: 08 Sep 2009)
Most of the phones have the threaded messaging.. so nothing special about it
3. DF334 (Posts: 36; Member since: 23 Feb 2009)
I own the 1st Storm and I could always use the screen. I think that a lot of people that used the phone saying that it was unusable is a very subjective statement. I have gotten to use the Storm2 and it is a HUGE improvement. I do agree with the comment above from secondcor517, because saying that the clicking part of the phone IS working, and then saying it is a con is a personal opinion. Great Review otherwise! OH....5.0 is really good by the way!!!
4. krusenkevin (Posts: 7; Member since: 29 Oct 2009)
It's a minor point, I know, but... the schizophrenia when stating dimensions and weight in reviews (Phone Arena and elsewhere) drives me n-u-t-s. Sometimes it's stated in metric terms, other times in Imperial terms. Can't we get it BOTH ways? 5 grams means nothing to me.
6. koustik (Posts: 4; Member since: 02 Nov 2009)
This may be hard to take in all at one time but.............Your not the only person in the world. JKLOL I would like to see both dimensions too.
5. narley (Posts: 357; Member since: 14 May 2009)
there is no way to classify how much better this phone is in words.... you HAVE to try it in person to fully appreciate how much better it is.
7. theo14461 (Posts: 125; Member since: 08 Oct 2009)
I've been using the Storm 2 for about a week. In the past, I've owned a BB Bold, Curve, and a Tour. I'll take the Storm 2, over them all. The camera has a very slight lag, but the pictures look great. I would like to be able to see the characters above my finger, as I type. Display is bright, and looks good, not too sensitive. Very pleased with this phone.
8. corymcnutt (Posts: 13; Member since: 01 Oct 2009)
Just for the record...in the PHONE area, the Storm2 DOES locate contacts by starting to type the name of the contact on the line; you just have to push the contact icon on the dial screen. You can also click on the Inc/Out calls icon and simply highlight a recent call and push dial. If you have the Phone icon pushed, you can only type a phone number in. The way they organized that phone area is very nice; I just wish RIM would allow a larger contact photo...we have a large screen, so why use a photo as small as the Pearl uses?
10. shilpa (unregistered)