* Update: October 15, 2009 - Read CrackBerry.com's Official BlackBerry Storm2 Review. Click below! *
* update: wow, apologies in the video for flipping around the device so much in my hands. must have had too much green tea this afternoon. *
Last week I got uhh... creative and errr.. in photoshop umm... chopped together some images of what a BlackBerry 9550 (aka BlackBerry "odin" aka BlackBerry Storm "2") would look like in my hands. The photos turned out pretty good, so I spent a little time working on my CGI / special effects skills and managed to render up the video above of how a pre-production BlackBerry Storm 9550 might also look in action! So yeah, I have no actual vid editing skills but that's my story and I'm sticking to it. ;)
Check out the movie to get a good sense of what the next-generation BlackBerry Storm is all about. Couple key things to point out: a) this is early hardware and very early software (newer versions of both the hardware and software already exist) so don't make any performance judgements just yet, and b) the device in the video does not have WiFi (at least according to the OS it's currently running) but rest-assured that all future CDMA BlackBerry smartphones to be released will have WiFi, including the Storm 9550.
As for initial reactions, here are my quick thoughts so far:
In going hands-on with the 9550, it becomes clear that this next-generation Storm is really an evolution of the original Storm. Yes, it's better in every respect, but I'm getting the impression it's sort of like when a new model year of a car comes out - it doesn't make the old one instantly obsolete. If you think about the Storm 9530 owners who have stuck it through and invested time in their device (OS upgrades, learning the keyboard so you're quick on it, etc.) and are using it effectively now, they won't necessarily need to run out and buy the Storm 9550 the day it comes out as they're now expert 9530 users (though more memory on 9550 should make a big performance difference). But for the people who didn't have the patience to pick up and use the original Storm (and wait for upgrades which have improved the device a lot since its initial release), the Storm 9550 should be much more to your liking. One of the things a lot of existing BlackBerry users didn't like about the first Storm was that it felt un-BlackBerry. The Storm 9550 is getting the BlackBerry-goodness back.
So what do you think so far? Any questions? What do you want to see? Let me know in the comments!!!