CrackBerry Holiday Gift Guide - Deciding which BlackBerry 7 Smartphone is right for you!

CrackBerry Holiday Gift Guide
By Jared DiPane on 4 Dec 2011 11:17 am EST

Time to replace that tired and worn BlackBerry device with something new, but not really sure which one you want to get? Over the past few months we have seen quite a few new devices release, but if you haven't been keeping an eye on all the reviews, odds are you are a bit lost on which one is best for you or someone you know. Fear not though, because just past the break we have broken down each of the new BlackBerry 7 devices with a little bit of information for you to help you make your decision.

BlackBerry 7 Summary

BlackBerry 7 

Odds are over the past few months you have heard about, and probably read a little bit about BlackBerry 7, but are left wondering what advantages it serves to you, and what the differences are between it and any other version of the BlackBerry OS. Well, BlackBerry 7 brings a few new features to the table, improves upon a bunch of features that were introduced into BlackBerry 6, and provides an overall improved experience for users. You are probably wondering what some of these changes are, so let's take a look at some of the improvements we gained in BlackBerry 7.

This definitely isn't everything you need to know about BlackBerry 7, because that would take all the fun out of it, but it is a good place to start.  
BlackBerry Bold 9900/9930

Bold 9900 

BlackBerry devices have always been known for their fantastic keyboards, and once the BlackBerry Bold 9000 hit the market people were in their glory. A larger device, with a nice spacious keyboard, but as the time passed the device became dated, and as the form factors changed many people wanted their old Bold 9000 form factor back again. From the time of the concept of a revamped BlackBerry Bold 9000 the excitement began, people were beyond excited at the hopes of getting their huge keyboard back, with current specs and more, and so the BlackBerry Bold 9900/9930 was born.

The BlackBerry Bold 9900/9930 is a current spin on an old device, done perfectly. Paired with the spacious keyboard is a trackpad instead of a trackball, and a touch screen as well. Now not only could you easily manuever with the trackpad but also by simply touching the display as well. While some may think the display is still to small (compared to other types of devices) if you are looking for that iconic BlackBerry keyboard, current specs, and a nice touch screen this device may be perfect for you. 

Who is this for? This device is definitely geared towards those who want to be able to reply with a nice long winded email response on the go, or someone who will be BBM'ing until their battery runs dry. If you are looking for the best BlackBerry experience to date, look no further. 

For everything you may want to know about the BlackBerry Bold 99xx and more, be sure to check out Kevin's novel of a review

BlackBerry Torch 9810

Torch 9810 

While the BlackBerry Torch 9800 was only released a year ago, the BlackBerry Torch 9810 has released bringing the same slider design that many loved with the addition of BlackBerry 7. If you are not really familiar with the original Torch line, it does feature a slide up screen underwhich lays the physical QWERTY that we are so used to seeing. In addition to the slide out keyboard there is also an on screen keyboard that can be used, along with a track pad and the standard BlackBerry buttons on the front.

Who is this for? This device unlike most others is a bit harder to pinpoint the crowd it is aimed at. While featuring the physical keyboard, it also offers a larger screen, which could be used for media consumption. If you are looking to combine your work and personal life, without sacrificing any key features, this device may be perfect for you.   

BlackBerry Torch 9850/9860

Torch 9850 

Remember the BlackBerry Storm? We do too, but this time RIM has given the form factor some serious thought, eliminated Sure-Press and given us a device people will want to use. The lack of physical QWERTY keyboard will sure put a limit as to the crowd it attracts, but the device itself is quite beautifully laid out. Reviewed twice by our team, the BlackBerry Torch 9850&9860 give you an all touch BlackBerry experience that far surpasses the experience we saw on the BlackBerry Storm and Storm 2. 

Featuring a 3.7-inch display and 4GB of on board memory this device is sure definitely a media friendly device allowing you to take your favorite music and videos on the go. Still giving the full BlackBerry experience with push email, 5MP camera, 720P video recording and all the other goodies, this device takes you away from the traditional business only view of BlackBerry, and combines it with some personal fun as well.

Who is this for? The BlackBerry Torch 9850 & 9860 is definitely geared towards users who want to use it for some awesome media consumption. The large screen is ideal for playing games, watching movies all in addition to the core BlackBerry features. 

BlackBerry Bold 9790

Bold 9790 

Did you like the BlackBerry Bold 9700, then fall in love with the BlackBerry Bold 9780, and then get crushed when you found out no OS 7 love for your device? Well lucky for you the BlackBerry Bold 97xx has been upgraded to the new BlackBerry Bold 9790, the OS 7 version of the previous models, but it does feature some aesthetics differences. First thing you will notice is the raised BlackBerry buttons, sure to please some who had issues in the past with the flat ones, but others will view these as an eye sore.

Similar in size and form factor to the other models the BlackBerry Bold 9790 offers a great BlackBerry experience, much like the Bold 9900 does, except in a smaller package.

Who is this for? People who are in love with the traditional BlackBerry form factor, but would rather a smaller device than the Bold 9900 will love the Bold 9790. With a 2.45-inch touch screen, and a physical QWERTY on the front, the messaging lover in you will love this device. 

BlackBerry Curve 9350/9360/9370

BlackBerry Curve 9360 

The BlackBerry Curve series has always been an extremely popular device amongst a wide variety of users, and the latest addition to the family is the Curve 9350 / 9360 /9370 devices. Adding BlackBerry 7 to a slightly modernized design this device gives you the best of both worlds combining a great BlackBerry experience along with the most current software. Close in size to the BlackBerry Bold 9790, with a spaced out keyboard, and no touch screen on the device it allows it to be offered at a much lower price point.

Who is this for? The BlackBerry Curve models have been extremely popular amongst the younger, and the older crowd of BlackBerry users ever since the beginning with the BlackBerry Curve 8300. With the lower price point it allows users to carry a device full of features without the price point of some of the higher end devices.

BlackBerry Curve 9380

Curve 9380 

Very similar in overall style to the BlackBerry Torch 9850 & 9860, the BlackBerry Curve 9380 offers a full touch experience at a more affordable cost. With the BlackBerry Curve 9380 you have a 3.2-inch display, a half inch smaller than the bigger brother, and only 512MB of on board memory compared to the 4GB. If you are looking for an all touch BlackBerry experience, but don't need all the extra's that the BlackBerry Torch 9850 & 9860 offer, and would rather something lower in cost, the BlackBerry Curve 9380 is the device for you!

Who is this for? This device is geared towards the younger crowd who may want the all touch experience, without the high cost associated with it. The device is still fully loaded feature wise, and even has NFC, so don't fear purchasing something obsolete when looking at the BlackBerry Curve 9380.

Jared DiPane Jared DiPane "News Writer for Mobile Nations
Father | Husband | Chipotle Addict"
319 (articles) 6102 (forum posts)

Reader comments

CrackBerry Holiday Gift Guide - Deciding which BlackBerry 7 Smartphone is right for you!


I got a 9860 about a month ago,I love it a bit of a learning curve coming from a bold 9000.a really nice device no problems at all!

Crackberry seems really geared towards the 9900 still. That's not a bad thing but seems narrow.

I've used the 9900 and have the 9810 & 9860 in my home. All are equal in performance for me. I prefer the all touch screen (I type a lot faster on it) but still use keyboard shortcuts so I have the 9810. My wife hates the physical keyboard so she went for the 9860. The 9900 has that old school feel to it, which is perfect for those who don't like typing on a screen.

This is part of why our family has stuck with rim for so long. The phones work well, they do what we want, and they have a model for different prefences. I just wish everyone else would see it that way.

Not by intent. I've been mixing up the phones latset.. Curve 9360, Torch 9860 and Bold 9790 most recently. Liking them all. Just ordered a bunch of accessories and stuff for review for all the devices. Will make sure the love gets spread around to all the models.  I think the 9900 is definitely the flagship and is what a lot of our writers are rocking so there's a natural "gearing" towards it, but I'll work on that.

That's good to hear. I've been able to convert a lot of people back to BB because of the torch line. I have three co-workers who came to the 9810 from an iphone saying it worked better for their needs. Most of my iphone and android fans really like the 9860 and are always trying to steal my wife's. I've sold a good number of them at work already (even though my reps fought me on bringing them to my store because they weren't android or apple).

And I don't mean this to sound bad; it's just an observation and I'm bad with words....

I understand that a lot of the writers have it. It is the flagship of everything that blackberry has done while combining it with the new. The 9900 is a double edge sword. Most of the people I know are prejudice towards it because it looks like a BB, whereas the torches don't. I don't know if that's media hype or the fact that people are just leaning towards touch screens.

I still love this site. I creep the forums, read the blogs daily, and feel that ya'll are committed on a level that is above mine. Keep up the good work and good luck with the new BB10 (or whatever they'll call it in time).

Great article, it just might be time for me to retire my 8330.....although it seems to be working just fine with my PlayBook, but I wouldn't mind not seeing the hourglass anymore!!! (or as much)

I'm lovin' &rockin' my 9900 like never before...awesome device standin' as a COMPLETE business &pleasure communication tool!!! ;)
'cant render any more appraisal than I already have...itz definitely your cheddaz-worth!!! ;)

I had a storm 1 and 2, and now use a torch 9850. while i miss the click screen of the storm, i absolutely love the phone. I just wish developers would get more apps working on OS7. but that is not RIM's fault. Can't wait to see what RIM turns out next year with the BBX phones.

Guys this is not a contest. Kevin is just giving Holiday Ideas for those who can't Make a decision on which phone they want. He's not giving any away.

I don't know if talking out of my a$$ here or not but I"ve always been hampered by app availability due to modle numbers not OS. Example: Sirius XM has an app for a mobile player based on specific model numbers for BB; Android and IOS is specified for the OS. If you try a download in your series it wount work. I'm not tech savy enough to know why and relly dont care. This isn't the only time I've had this problem. I've been uning a 9930 for a couple weeks now and frickin love it! I just want it to integrate into the world like everything else. And now we have six OS7 devices? Can't RIM concentrate on maybe the Bold, Torch and Torch slider? Isn't that enough forms for all interested? I got a Curve 3G because it was marketed as the BB for the everyman .... what a flop. Too many devices, concentrate on a few and make them the best. And from the guy who spent 600 on a 32G Playbook, help me out, don't push me away, I've been a BB guy for a long time and love my new 9930 and use the Playbook alot at work and personaly, and I really really really don't want to go over to the dark side

my son is wanting to upgrade from his Curve 8530, its either Bold 9900 or 9790, which is better?
he wants a good camera and storage.

9790 is not a phone I'm too fond of. The way the kayboard almost goes over the sides doesnt look right. I love my 9900 :D

Ow I'm absolutely loving my Torch 9810 its described as "A Powerful Evolutior" on the Blackberry's Youtube Channel. Thanks for this Article!

Fruit Juice. "Black-Berry" ;) taste good doesn't it

why dont you people highlight that torch 9810 HAS BOTH HD VIDEO AND AUTOFOCUS! the bold 9900 has HD video but no autofocus. the bold 9790 has autofocus but no HD video. the torch 9810 has both. i love my torch 2 :)