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So we got the thunder in at work and I got a chance to play ... BlackBerry Storm forum

  1. #1
    FiddlerMD's Avatar
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    Initial impression: disappointing

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    So we got the thunder in at work and I got a chance to play with it a little.
    Disclaimer: we have a pro-production unit so some of these are likely beta woes.

    First what i liked:

    screen - beautiful, high res, very legible and colorful

    clicking - the fact that the screen clicks in is very cool and adds to the experience

    neat looking default theme - you've all seen this - it's pretty eye candy

    form factor - feels good in the hand, rear cover is metal, solid and chunky feeling. good size.
    --------
    and, as they say, (for me at least) it's down hill from there. Now let me preface this by saying I'm a UI snob. I just cannot deal with laggy responses and weird UI behavior. This is the reason I can't ever use Windows Mobile.
    so first off, the fact that the touchscreen doesnt quite work like a touchscreen - as i'm sure many of you already know, the touchscreen is replacing the trackball in terms of functionality so sliding your finger around is like moving the trackball, and clicking on the screen is like clicking the ball. The problem I have with this is consistency. On the main screen, you can just go and click on an icon and all is good. this is not true for some applications though so you actually need to scroll around to get to your text field and then click, as opposed to just sticking your finger exactly where you want.

    the responsese in general are sluggish. flip landscape/portrait takes something like 2-3 seconds with no indication that something is about to happen. In legacy apps, there is no flipping at all, so it would've been nice to see some indication that it's not gonna happen.

    A lot of times, scrolling and general input seems to "hiccup" .. meaning it'll pause for a little before executing the desried action.

    naturally there's an iphone comparison to do.. truth is, no one on the market can currently best apple at UI design. that's just fact. I'm not an apple fanboy - i don't own a mac, never use an ipod and don't worship steve, but i AM a software engineer and specialize in UI design. the storm/thunder cannot hold a handle to the iphones smoothness and the fact that it just works (I'm referring to UI only so please hold the flames). On the other hand, after using the storm for a while, i did miss the screen clicking when switching to an iphone.
    Personally, i'm gonna stick to something button-based for now. Maybe if RIM fixes the UI with a later build, i'd reconsider. Their first touchscreen effort is commendible but it won't be for everyone.

  2. #2
    j llama's Avatar
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    Thanks for the in depth hands on review Fiddler.
    BlackBerry® Certified Support Specialist

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    Same here! Thx! I am always a skeptic when it comes to touch screens. But it will still not hinder me from buying it. I can always fall back on my lovely Curve.

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    j llama's Avatar
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    for browsing do you just slide up and down to scroll through a web page?
    did you try youtube at all?
    If it easy to type messages?
    BlackBerry® Certified Support Specialist

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    FiddlerMD's Avatar
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    j llama - the device we have is not yet provisioned so no browsing yet.

    typing-wise it's not bad. I have a pearl so suretype worked great for me. Qwerty was less successful - i wish they did something similar a-la iphone with letters popping up. They do highlight whatever you're "hovering" over but a large thumb will cover it up completely. other people who used it tell me they're having a fairly easy way with it though

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    MWPatterson's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info, I am still looking forward to it, now I have to wait for Sprint, if they get it at all.

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    Jbee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FiddlerMD View Post
    j llama - the device we have is not yet provisioned so no browsing yet.

    typing-wise it's not bad. I have a pearl so suretype worked great for me. Qwerty was less successful - i wish they did something similar a-la iphone with letters popping up. They do highlight whatever you're "hovering" over but a large thumb will cover it up completely. other people who used it tell me they're having a fairly easy way with it though

    Doooaah! I was afraid of that. My hands are like the "Thing"...huge!

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    FiddlerMD's Avatar
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    Jbee - well at least you have the option of suretype

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    I have a hands on event to check the device out Monday, I hope it is live for voice and data. I plan on putting that thing through the ringer lol.

    There is a ton of hype and I really do hope it lives up to it. If not, there is always the 30 day return.

    I am okay with a few bugs here and there with it being the first of its kind. I had the 8100 the second day it launched from TMO (my very 1st BB) and that thing was all kinds of buggy. Hopefully OS upgrades will resolve future and potential issues for the 9530.
    BlackBerry® Certified Support Specialist

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    I wanna try one. . .
    THBASSMAN

    Carpe Diem!!

    thbassmanatpinstackdotcom

    Check this out!!! Mobiletropolis

    My TORCH Rocks!

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    j llama's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thbassman View Post
    I wanna try one. . .
    BlackBerry Storm Set to Tour the US

    This is how I found out about it, thanks to Hayden.
    BlackBerry® Certified Support Specialist

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    Jbee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FiddlerMD View Post
    Jbee - well at least you have the option of suretype
    Unfortunately, my index finger covers 6 keys on my Curve and 4 on my Pearl...that's why I had to retire my "sure-type" Pearl. I was hoping for bigger/better keyboard on the Storm...which it seems to have...but it's touch-screen. I will still give it a shot. It's a new toy!

  13. #13
    j llama's Avatar
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    Fiddler, how is the "smudge factor" since it is a touch device and all?
    You mentioned pro-production and beta...Is this referring to a device that is OR is not ready?
    BlackBerry® Certified Support Specialist

  14. #14
    FiddlerMD's Avatar
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    smudges galore - i dont think any phone fares better than another in this respect .. the pre-production refers to the fact that i don't know 100% whether the software on the devie is exactly as it will be when i'ts up for sale or whether they'll release it with bug fixes that i've yet to see

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    I am a "screen-protector fiend". I am wondering how this will effect tactile response of the device. This might be a hands-on-only issue to solve...just thought I would throw that to ya'.

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