BlackBerry Thunder / Storm CAUGHT ON VIDEO!

By Kevin Michaluk on 10 Sep 2008 01:27 am EDT

** Update: Original Video apparently pulled by user. No need to skip ahead in the new video above, just hit Play! **

GEEBUS. Just saw this. SKIP AHEAD TO Minute 2:55 of the Video above to see RIM's touchscreen BlackBerry Storm in Action!! I'm not sure how recent the hardware/OS build is of the pre-release device featured in the video, but this is the first hands-on video look of RIM's upcoming Thunder / Storm we have seen. Initial Reactions? Sound Off in the comments and forums!!

Reader comments

BlackBerry Thunder / Storm CAUGHT ON VIDEO!


Personally i think it is a very good thing they have where u have to press it down again to make sure its selecting the correct key. Seems like this will reduce errors but take some getting used to. Wish he would have played with it more. Great Find

seems like it would reduce errors. Seems like it could slow things down a bit, compared to using most touch screens. But we'll see!!

I hope they price it right!

I like the click, maybe I wont avoid it like the iPhone after all. I wish he would have shown the scrolling. Kind of surprised Kevin hasn't found a way to get his hands on one of these yet to show us more detail.

i dont know how i feel about it. the whole one big button thing throws me off. hopefully its improved way beyond this because its not going to be worth anything if the touch doesnt match up to the iphone.

Well I'm excited to see if any news is dropped at CTIA. Then of course it dropping on my nearest Verizon store so I can get my grubby fingers on it! I'm sooo looking forward to get my first BB device. With ALL the new BB devices dropping over the next couple of quarters, I just need to win the lotto! Great find Kevin.

damn crackberry ninjas don't sleep huh, good fucking intel!!! i'm still sticking with da bold on fukking at&t cuz Big Red Verizon spells dooms to da thunder-storm.

Need a lot more than this to decide if it's good or not, but what I saw kind of makes me wish they kept the trackball on this thing...

I personally think the whole trackball is a flaw in blackberry devices... I mean don't get me wrong I do enjoy it for navigating and all but I and other people I know with curves have had issues upon issues with the trackball. I have actually gotten to a point where I don't even press mine in anymore out of fear of it crappin out on me again, very annoying.

The Part of the iphone/ipod touch that I hate is the keyboard. I just cant get used to the no feedback. I think I will love the "double click" of the Storm. Can't Wait to get my hands on it, and hopefully they doll up the keyboard a little before it goes to production.

Do your thing Sprint to get this device at all costs. I do not want to switch carriers, you guys have the best rates of them all with your SEP plans, nobody beats your pricing.

And this is a CDMA device, which you would normally get about 12 or so months later, after the other carriers have had there way with it.

To have this alongside your Instinct, and the new Iden BB (curve) coming soon, you guys would be the carrier to beat!

And i agree with the other folks, i wish he played a little bit more with it instead of talk it down because he did not like it. Thats ok, Kevin will strike back with an honest review of it. Soon he says, more time he says. mmmm, yes.

Precisely why I don't like the Iphone, it takes no effort to make a mistake on that kboard.
This might be a refreshing change. Might be the last straw for me to switch to Verizon.

To be honest it looks to be a giant step backwards. the touchscreen is never going to come close to the iPhone's and that keyboard will be shocking to use.

The scrolling feature is going to be ridiculously hard to use compared to the trackball and the way the iPhone does it.

Plus it looks bulky and that keyboard is ugly as hell!

how can you judge all this months before its release?
most of the things you complain about are software issues anyway, which definitely needs work (especially keyboard skin)
you can tell all this from 30 seconds that some kid shows?

Because I listened to what the guy said in the video...

Typing on this will be so much worse than with a physical keyboard (I don't think that can be disputed).

Why not just make the Bold's screen touch sensitive? Best of both worlds.

What he said about it, wasn't worth the air he breathed to say it..hardly enough time to make judgment on a device when no one knows what is actually running on the thing or what revisions could have been made since then..

The phone looks good, but why the black bandana, Al-Quaida style look, dude? I mean, any worse and you'd be wearing a checkered scarf around your whole head. Just gives me the creeps...

Why is that monkey wearing a ninja mask? haha.

great video, cant wait for that thing! kevin please get your hands on one! I'm sure your already working on it ;)!

I'll never have a Touch berry, so I guess my thoughts on it will never be really great, but that's just me...

Aside from that their is no way of knowing how old this device he has actually is..what OS is on it nor what revisions to the device may or may not have been made since..besides, once Kevin locks it down and the blackberry fairy drops one at his door..then we will have a good idea of the REAL capabilities this thing will have..until then some dude I never heard of saying "Uhh I don't like it" means nothing to me.

Does he really think someone is going to push their finger through the screen?!? That would be a feat to see.....

Other than that the phone seemed a little slow to orient itself to the way it was tilted. Not much to see about the keyboard usage.

This wasn't as in depth as I was hoping to see but at least we get a little confirmation of our hopes here

Thanks guys!!

Well, I highly doubt this is the final hardware or OS, especially due to the super basic keyboard design. I'm sure RIM will have a much more polished version when it hits stores. While I must admit that the "pushing in" of the screen to press icons is probably not the best for scrolling, it sounds like a really awesome compromise for those who struggle with the inaccuracy of touch screen keyboards, as it will have a somewhat tactile response, even one more realistic than say the buzz reaction from LGs Voyager. In addition, since the screen does in fact respond to basic touch as an indicator of where you are on the keyboard (without actually pressing any keys), perhaps it is not too late for them to make the scrolling and menu interface a bit smoother. In fact maybe they already have. It's not like RIM to skimp on details.

Seems like this guy is an apple/iphone lover, frankly his voice sounds like hes got one stuck up his ass as he's talking. The phone looks awesome thank goodness we finaly have a live look at it.

How did this guy obtain these phones? He's obviously trying to hide his identity with the mask covered the lower half of his face. So can he get in trouble for posting a video like this or is he a hired beta tester for BB and other phone makers?

"Hope RIM makes a GSM version..."

This phone is CDMA+GSM. Vodafone will be carrying the device at the same time as VZW. It will just be locked out so that USA GSM carriers won't be subsidizing the handset purchases for use on their networks.

That short section of video is not enough to make any solid decisions about the phone. It obviously still needs a lot of work. The scrolling feature does not look user friendly, the keyboard looks quite small and I wonder how easy it would be to press other buttons while typing - I can't tell because the guy in video is more interested in being controversial rather that showing us the phone. I like the self-righting sensor thing. I am not really keen on the iphone mostly because it's a toy with capabilities that have been limited by Apple who want to be all secret squirrel about it and so far that video does not make me wanna drop the BB I have for that.

Too bias... to anti BB ... Too AT&T ... this device is going 2 be great... I think the deathstar is nervous....

As you can see below BG works for ATT... He started being BB now he is apple , att fanboy... HE IS TRYING TO UNDERMINE RIM, TMOBILE , VERIZON... ANYONE THAT CAN POSE A THREAT TO ATT

Exclusive Boy Genius interview! White Pearl, 8800, and 9XXX information | BlackBerry Cool

See, you could be lying to me, you know, but that would make some sense. You’re telling me “companies better watch out” meaning that there are loads of informants out there?

A ton. Nothing is safe. And to clear something up, people said I work for RIM, I do this, I work for Cingular (NOW ATT) - I have never worked for any company in the tech world, ever. I am under no NDA so anything and everything is open season. People said RIM gave me the Pearl, etc.

RIM is probably the tightest company I have seen - the fact they didnt sue over the Pearl showed the transition they are making. 5 people get fired over leaking one photo, so that was huge. Good job RIM. They understood “viral marketing” and how it played a big role.

Wait, I said multiple Boy Genius‘ ? There’s like a 100, man…Or maybe only one. Who knows? Also, I want to shoutout the Engadget team. They are part of the reason I have been so vocal, they gave me an avenue to speak.

If you read the statement, he specifically said he *doesn't* work for AT&T, or *any* tech company, for that matter.

I like the design of the phone, but i would love to see how it does copy and paste as well other features. but still looking for the bold, or a mix between that and the javalin. does anybody know whether or not the thunder would come out for gsm service?

How can people get upset & judge the device on a few minutes of video ? Who knows how old it is, it could be one of the first beta devices & lots of things could have changed since then...also its only 1 persons review, he doesn't like it thats his opinion, doesn't mean everything is rubbish about it.

I hope this kid works for RIM and gets his ass fired for being such a lame ninja and reviewer. I'll wait to see the handset in person.

See, I think he (the guy in the video) is dead wrong about the haptic response on the Storm - I love love LURV the fact that you have to actually push the screen for something to happen, for two reasons:

1.) It keeps things familiar for us die-hard physical QWERTY lovers.

2.) It bypasses one of the biggest problems I had with WinMo - accidentally selecting things I didn't want to.

The physical clicking makes so much sense, and if that guy had ever REALLY used a WinMo device for any period of time he'd realize that.

It sounds great. Finally a nice phone on Verizon... (though they probably will cripple it). However, in response to the video commentator, having to touch the screen slightly harder makes complete sense and its not going to "break" the phone. In fact this type of action is very similar to digital SLRs in full auto mode. Press lightly on button to auto-focus press harder to take the picture.

Seems like it would slow things down a lot but I suspect that the sensitivity is adjustable much like the sensitivity of the trackball.

While this was really a very short look, the hardware looked solid and I really like that it flips to orient in any direction. One thing I did not is that the screen did not seem to have any greater pixel density than the iPhone but a nice screen nevertheless. They do need to prettify that keyboard though. :)

Not nearly enough video. Its obvious this guy is anti-RIM. If it were a finalized version, don't you think he would have shown us the browser and media player, camera, etc...

I'm going to wait and see what happens at CTIA today and tomorrow. The Storm will be much better than this video described. BB lovers, don't fret over this video, too inconclusive.

thunder looks good but im a att man so im waiting for the bold. nice to see the thunder in the wild so hopefully it will be in stores soon for all u verizon people. = P

Anybody else think this guy is a complete tool??? Looks like he is just a phone whore!!! LOL j/k. I can't judge a phone by 30 secs of air time and not even showing hardly anything. He only said negative things about the phone. I guess i will be my own judge and try it out. If i don't like it then i will return the phone.

It looks a little bit to big (and thick) honostly. I am not a big Iphone fan but at least that is thin and still fits a lot in there. Maybe Blackberry SHOULD take a look at the iPhone for a change?

The 3G iPhone is .49 inches thick, the Storm is .54 inches thick. Not that much of a difference really. About 1 mm.

Well, I liked the pictures and although it does look kinda cool on the video, I'm not too sure about it now. I hope that VZW does get the Niagra soon after it's launched because I'd rather have that over this Thunder / Storm. I don't like that on-screen keyboard cause it takes up too much of the screen so it's going to be hard to type anything that is substantially long on it. It probably would have been better if they had it with a on-screen AND slide-out keyboard for those who want a real keyboard to use.
Just my opinion though.

I really dont't know until i get a feel of what the device is like and get a real hands on experience with the interface and keyboard. I love my bold and i am going to keep it for a long long time.

ps. the lotus looked pretty hawt too.... for my younger sister.

I don't understand why people get mad when someone gives a negative review or just says a couple things you don't like about a device you wanted to like so bad. Maybe you didn't get to hear the things you wanted to hear but that doesn't mean that he is wrong or you are wrong. It all depends on the person. Just like any other phone, some people will love and others will hate it. As soon as someone says something bad about a device that exclusive on another carrier thatn AT&T people have to throw out "his AT&T bias..." and all that mess. Since this phone is probably not going to be exclusive to VZW FOREVER, do you think his opinion will change when AT&T gets it? His opinion here is about the device and not the network. Maybe this will be a good device, maybe it won't. As for me, I have a Curve and iPhone and when the Bold comes out next month, I'm trading my Curve!

Wow it is looking good so far, but I do pray it isn't the final OS. The transitions when tilting could be a lot smoother, like the iphone or something along that line. I am liking the actual button press screen though. That guy might not but I sure as hell do. haha

ok ok ok i saw this halfArsed "touchscreen" comming but didnt expect it to be so dang GNARLY!!! yucksauce!! well this device will be AWESOME for watching movies right guys? but what about for the practical Business use? scroll through your emails real quick? i think not...but then again you never know a CB untill you grasp it between your addicted fingers and begin to get your Lewis and Clark on with a the latest OS (aka:fix) from RIM

sorry guys i say we are still a long way off from the touchscreen CrackBerry we all dream of....:(

maybe in the future.....


WTF???!!! I hit play.. it played for the first 10 seconds then.....

"We're sorry, this video is no longer available."


Why do these people dress up like a ninja to review or show a phone? That's very retarded. IMO Guess he has a few cold sores on his lips he can't show. LOL

I was really excited for the Thunder/Storm, but this video is giving me second thoughts. If its gonna be a royal pain just to click, I dunno. Hopefully this isn't the final deal and this guy with a moronic voice is just an idiot, but now I'm gonna have to go and play with it physically before I hit the buy button on this one, there may be better options. And plus, still no word on the technical specs at looks decent though, except the pushing hard on the whole dam thing.

I still want it. I'm not happy with the scrolling feature if that is the case, but I'm sure with the release of third party themes/applications and maybe updated os releases it will fix most users concerns with the device. Making each their own.

Could any one help me out here? I think I didn't understand why this guy didn't like the Thunder/Storm.

The main reason I didn't migrate to iPhone was because of the keyboard.

This touchscreen keyboard clicks! And not only that, it TURNS!!!!!!!!!!

My god when is this coming out?

i don't know about this... i am waiting for something new from rim but i don't think this is it! i agree with the video. looks a little hard to use but maybe my mind will change when i get it... can't wait!!!

You know I watched this video last night and that bandanna did kinda creep me out.
Didn't pay much attention to his comments about the phone as much as to the way the phone fit his hand etc. Obviously the software in there is obsolete by now and won't be the "final" release.
How could you judge the way the interface between the phone and the user works by this then??

The Iphone was a problem for some women with fingernails. The keypads would not repond to being tapped by a fingernaail only the pad of a finger. I wonder if this phone will have that problem?

Very nice looking device. A bit thick maybe? Also, the interface doesn't seem to respond very fast to changes in orientation.

And what's with the "ninja"?! Good lord... LOL

Hey, I love the phone from the looks of it. The whole button thing looks like he is exagerating a little bit on how hard you have to push but anyways that is awesome.

its quite funny how people are making quick judgements, esp. on the BGR site (mostly Apple fanboys) anyways. I would like to see more features. Also it may look small and thick cuz the guy is 5'1 lol so its all relative.

Makes me more glad I switched to the iphone 3g last week. gave my curve to my sister. I'm sure they will fix some of the issues with the scrolling and stuff before they release it. But still, Apple has such a headstart on the touchscreen. Its gotta be hard for RIM to make a really good touchscreen without copying apple too much.

So why dose Vz get this and im stuck with att and the crappy bold coming some time? Oh and the bold is 100 more then this touch bb! How the hell dose that make any since?

I'm just going to get a new curve 8310 and then get a all white becky case! :D

So, a little bit of googling turns up that the BrewNinja, aka Lee Almodovar, is employed by IT Ascent and has been a contractor to Yahoo Mobile for the past three months. Nice Yahoo. You let your contractors out one of the most anticipated Berry's to date. Hopefully we can be certain that Almodovar is now unemployed, IT Ascent has lost it's contract, and Jerry Yang of Yahoo! has received a strongly worded letter from RIM's attorneys.

I'm a HUGE BlackBerry fan but also use an iPhone. While the upcoming Bold is a worthy successor to the BlackBerry brand in the business market, it's obvious that the touchscreen Storm is a gigantic step backwards in the consumer market. There is a reason why RIM shares have dropped more than 30 percent in recent weeks as people who have actually gotten their hands on these products are in private giving them low marks——versus fanboys here who keep touting the superiority of products they haven't even held to the market-tested iPhone being used by millions. Worst of all is the hypocrisy of those who worship at the altar of "full-size" physical keyboards -- which simply don't exist on smartphones, folks! -- and trash the iPhone but suddenly are willing to flush the Bold for a horrific iPhone knock-off like the Storm. In so doing, you prove your are less a true BlackBerry fan than a true iPhone-hater. Meanwhile, I agree with some comments that giving the Bold a touchscreen to complement the keyboard would work quite nicely or giving the Storm a slideout keyboard would also work—-assuming RIM nails the touchscreen. And right now, folks, not only does iPhone lead the world in touchscreen technology but it also has 100 patents to lock its supremacy as THE multi-touch UI across all kinds of devices yet to be developed over the next hundred years. Get used to it.

Can you please explain why the Thunder/Storm hurts RIM? And give me some real examples.....waiting.......oh thats right, you haven't actually used the device so you wouldn't actually have a clue. Wow, you people kill me. I'm done going back and forth, and I'm not going to try and convince anyone. But it's rather immature you hold such a opinion on a device you've never actually held much less use. You are 110% completely uninformed at best.

You make a good point. I have not held the Storm itself. I have held many other touchscreens--see the comments below—-which by their very nature cut against the BlackBerry experience of a responsive, reliable physical keyboard for creating and replying to emails—-BlackBerry's raison de'tat. This is the edge the Bold has for its core power users over the iPhone--and it's an edge BlackBerry forfeits with the Storm. Make sense?

I'm in the Point-of-Sale industry... we've been using touch screens for 20 years.

They're great for some applications, but for others they're terrible. I cannot imagine why you'd want a touch screen on a device primarily known for it's ability to get a message sent faster than any other device on the planet. BlackBerry's are fast because of their keyboard design. They're reliable because of their keyboard design.

Touch screens were adopted in electronics because they're easy. So they're great for the ipod/iphone consumer -- have you met any of them? Most of them are morons.

Touch screens are also easy for other reasons... They break easy. They scratch easy. They lose calibration easy. Touch screens are finicky... They're hard to type on, hard to control, hard to be precise on...

I just can't see the serious BB users picking these up and trading in their keyboards. I certainly won't. Ever.

The iphone is a neat idea, but it's not better. It's certainly not better for practical reasons. I think 20 years from now we'll look back on the iphone and laugh... like we do at Pong.

How are we going to play brick breaker on here? That is the important question. Touch brick breaker???

whoa that looks awesome...i don't know why he's bitching about the whole hold thing...isn't that why its supposed to be better than the iphone cuz it actually responds to your touch like a button...even though that whole holding to scroll thing looks like it would be a bit of a pain...but i'm sure you'd get used to it...
all i can say is I WANT IT!!!

How can you say this guy isn't a Canadian lover?? He likes, the keypad, he likes the phone, he likes the 360 orientation of the phone. The only he doesn't like is the screen. Which I agree would limit it tremendously for anyone that isn't into biz only apps. The main draw for me in the iPhone was multi-touch. The screen is able to recognize 1 finger to 3 fingers plus different motions and gestures, this can't so it is very very very limited in what it can do. Otherwise if it sells for less then 500 it is a good deal.

Ok, anyone who has EVER had a touchscreen phone, and I've had my share, would actually LIKE the fact that you can select things on screen with a light touch but have to push to activate.
I can't tell you how many times I've fat fingered a TS Phone device and hit an icon I didn't want to. You learn to adjust..
Once you got used to the difference it would be much better for not making typing errors also.
It simply sounds to me that he is not a lover of TS devices. Some of us are, and I can't wait for the 9530 to arrive....
I will admit that he has a point about the scroll function.... but there has to be a better way.

He's such a damn whiner. "You have to push it and it clicks..and I dont like that" Grow up crybaby. Theres not a single device out there that doesnt have at least one thing the user doesnt care for. The bottom line is its the best BB produced to date. If you dont like it then get the bold.

Obviously you will be able to adjust the sensitivity of the touch response. I know you can do so for the ball of the curve...Obviously the keyboard will be more aesthetically pleasing upon release. Obviously the person in the video had a deformed face.

I don't understand this, why is this guy was able to obtain a thunder and crackberry can't? This is embarrassing.

Crackberry needs to get out there and get this phone and do a complete review of it, since it's like the best represented blackberry website.


You obviously enjoy BB products and what they offer the business world. You agree that are the standard for quickness, reliability, and business functionality. In addition, you apparently enjoy what the iPhone has to offer as far as consumer functionality. There are verifiably many advantages a sound capacitive touchscreen/UI can offer. I couldn't agree more with both opinions.

FYI- BB is aware of the possibilities of touchscreen technology and wanted to see if it was possible to take the BB strengths and actually carry them over to a touchscreen. The cool guys at BB have spent the last COUPLE YEARS in secrecy attempting to do just that. That is why Storm technology is far different than anything out there, including the iPhone.

Those who have experienced the UI, excluding Mr. Ninjabrew, have expressed it as nothing short of revolutionary. The melding of BB functionality of top notch touchscreen tech and MultiMedia functionality...what's not to like!

Now according to Mr. Ninja (and some other naysayers), it apparently isn't possible to combine the two, or he just doesn't like it due to his fear of breaking the screen...ok. Thank you Mr. Ninja for your insight. I'm sure he was fully aware when posting the video that his shinning clip would be the first clip of this super-secret phone to surface on the web. Good for him. I hope it was worth his future in the industry. I doubt he will be working on any more upcoming products. I think he apology of his website says it all.

As far as technology, apple is not the only one with patents. BB has their share. To be really specific, excluding many companies that aren't as well known, the patents at work in Microsoft Surface technology would probably minimize the significance of even the iPhone(which I like). How many iphones can pay your bill at a restaurant by placing your CC on touchscreen. Kind of scary. And to think Gates wants one in every home in the next 10-15 years.

Since you like BBs and the iPhone, I hope the Storm turns out to be a great melding of the two so you can drop to just one device...and if not, life goes on I guess:)

I think a ninja from apple is trying to make the Thunder look bad to convince anyone holding out to go ahead and buy the iPhone. Anyone else thinks so?

Here are some fact or fiction answers for you:

Press button screen...Fiction
Video playback...Fact
WiFi...Fiction (for Verizon)
Battery Life 8 hours talk time...False (~5 hours ~11 days standby)
Jon McCain invented it...Fiction (did support fund for fed equip for these types of devices)
Video voicemail...Fact
Hackability...You will have to be good, real good!