BlackBerry Curve 8900 review: Curved right
Thumbs up for the web browser
The web browser of BlackBerry Curve 8900 is certainly one of the best we have seen among non-touch phones. A great combination of nice software, quick-QWERTY input and precise trackball navigation adding up to a combo that is hard to match.
The zoom is of course user configurable, even if not as easily as on the touch-enabled Storm. Panning is great thanks to the trackball and the virtual mouse cursor. You just push it towards the border of the page, et voila.
Page rendering is near perfect displaying almost every page like on a computer. The high resolution display is another welcome bonus here, as it allows more content to fit on the screen.
In fact the only bad part about the web browser of the BlackBerry Curve 8900 is the lack of Flash support.
Other than that, the handset provides great user experience when browsing the web, comparable only to the optical joystick-enabled Samsung handsets. Its inability to show Flash content however might tip the scales in favor of the competitors, like Nokia E71, even if they have somewhat clumsier navigation.
Organizer duly covered
The time-managing capabilities of the BlackBerry Curve 8900 are simply superb. Its organizer includes a good set of applications and although some of them are not quite the lookers, their usability is on a very decent level.
The calendar has monthly, weekly and daily view modes and allows easily customized events to be set up. We have to admit that some event presets would have been useful but unluckily the device fails to provide them.
Mobile office is also very well geared, with preinstalled applications able to open and edit Word, Excel and PowerPoint files. Furthermore, document editing is also supported right out of the box, unlike most competing phones. Unfortunately, there is no PDF viewer preinstalled so potential users will have to get one themselves.
The organizer package also includes a calculator with a built-in unit-converter as well as voice recorder and a Notes application. A handy To-do manager allows you to set-up and organize your upcoming tasks.
The alarm application allows you to only set one alarm, which fails to impress. It's quick to turn on but most of its settings can only be adjusted from the settings menu. There you can change the tone, snooze interval and the volume as well as the vibration intensity.
The clock also offers a bedside mode that turns off the status LED (unless you set it otherwise) and displays a large clock on the screen.
Finally the BlackBerry Curve 8900 comes with a stopwatch and a timer. Both are accessed from the clock application and have the usual functionality.