Display and Camera

The one drawback of having a non-slider full QWERTY keypad on a mobile device is the screen real estate you have to give up. The Bold doesn’t try to change this in any way; it maintains the same 2.4” 480x360 resolution display as BlackBerry smartphones of the past. Obviously this makes surfing the internet on the Bold cumbersome, at best, which is sad as we’ll see later that RIM seems to be focusing quite heavily on improving its browser performance. But for almost everything else the display works just fine. Reading emails, chatting and even watching the occasional YouTube video all work well on the Bold’s crisp screen. Visibility outdoors is also not an issue as the light sensor is able to ramp up the brightness sufficiently under direct sunlight.

(Left) The Bold's display is bright and sharp (Right) and the outdoor visibility is pretty good too

The 5MP AF camera with LED Flash on the 9780 is the exact same module as the one found in the Torch 9800. Under naturally well-lit conditions, the 9780's camera can pull off decent shots, but in poorly lit (or even artificially lit) situations, noise becomes increasingly visible. As such, everything that Brian covered in his Torch 9800 review is applicable to the camera found in the 9780 Bold--from the inability to choose what to focus on, to the low-by-todays-standards 640x480 limit on video resolution, and the silly message about how turning the LED flash ON for video will drain the battery faster, everything is the exact same. The only exception is that the image preview frame rate on the Bold seems to be on par with other devices as I could not notice any obvious stuttering.

I apologize for the overcast image and video samples. The Bay area hasn't caught a break in the last couple of weeks when it comes to bad weather! As such, the quality will be worse than what you'd get in better lighting conditions.

Design and Ergonomics Performance and Other Notes
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  • Galcobar - Friday, March 25, 2011 - link

    "BlackBerry's" standing in for a plural form is also present in the Display and Camera page, first paragraph; and Design and Ergonomics, third paragraph
  • JarredWalton - Friday, March 25, 2011 - link

    Thanks... I tried searching for "Blackberry's" and couldn't find any hits; turns out that the text was "BlackBerry’s" (notice that's a right-single-quote instead of a regular apostrophe). Any more comments from the grammar fiends, or have we finally reached the point where you can merely grumble about our style rather than full-blown errors? :-)
  • Holler - Saturday, March 26, 2011 - link

    technically, Curve 9330 3G for sprint I beleive was the first "non touch: blackberry with OS6. has same processor and memory, but lesser screen and camera. I think it came out a month sooner.
  • tammlam - Sunday, March 27, 2011 - link

    I'm on my second BB and the reason I went with them again is that these phones can take a licking and keep on ticking. I was tempted to go Android or WP7 but decided against it because I have seen some of my friends' Android phones have hardware failures from just regular use. My original BB was abused by my then 1-year-old son on a daily basis and it still works. It's been dropped, used as a chew toy, and thrown. I don't even hesitate to hand over the new BB to my now 2-year-old for him to play with. Furthermore, I do not use a protective case.
  • johnnydfred - Wednesday, March 30, 2011 - link

    I just "graded" to the new Bold. This company's offering is becoming a joke. Had to take a meeting with conference calling, and finally switched over to my iPhone to get 'er done. Just can't believe my corp. is still working with RIM.

    I could close my eyes, spin and launch this cruddy piece of silicon and plastic into the night, and have a pretty good chance of striking a better smartphone.
  • CellPig - Thursday, June 30, 2011 - link

    As long as Blackberry continues to keep their focus on things other than the internet browsing and apps they will continue to lose market share. Younger generations are snatching up smart phones left and right and they're not going to Blackberry. Does RIM not do any research on their target market??

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