BlackBerry Curve 9380 review: Not what you’d expect

GSMArena team, 29 December 2011.
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Introduction

The BlackBerry Curve 9380 is RIM’s first ever-released Curve with a touchscreen. The Curve lineup is usually an expression of RIM’s understanding for a budget phone and this one supposedly, doesn’t make a difference. It should attract customers with a lower entry price while offering the full BB OS 7 experience.


BlackBerry Curve 9380

The new Curve 9380 is basically a downgraded Torch 9860 – it has a less-capable processor and smaller and low-res display. Both gadgets look similar too, but the Curve's pricetags makes up for the differences.

So, let’s take a look at the Curve 9380 full feature list, followed by potential deal-breakers as we saw them.

Key features:

  • 3.2" 16M-color TFT touchscreen of HVGA resolution (360 x 480 pixels)
  • Quad-band GSM support and tri-band 3G with HSDPA
  • Single-core 800MHz processor
  • 512MB RAM
  • BlackBerry OS v7
  • BlackBerry’s proprietary email service and data security
  • Wi-Fi b/g/n connectivity
  • GPS receiver and BlackBerry maps preloaded
  • 5 megapixel fixed-focus camera and a LED flash
  • VGA video recording @ 30 fps
  • 150MB of inbuilt storage
  • 2GB MicroSD card pre-bundled
  • Four physical buttons at the bottom
  • Optical trackpad
  • Hot-swappable microSD card slot (up to 16GB)
  • DivX and Xvid video support
  • Office document editor
  • 3.5 mm audio jack
  • Smart dialing
  • Ultra-fast boot times
  • Solid build quality

Main disadvantages:

  • BlackBerry Internet Service account is a must to enjoy all the phone features
  • No physical QWERTY keyboard (a potential deal breaker for a BlackBerry)
  • No videocalling and no front facing camera either
  • No Flash support for the web browser
  • No FM radio
  • Screen has no haptic feedback
  • Poor audio quality and loudspeaker performance

As you can see, most of the listed drawbacks of the new Curve are typical BlackBerry. So if tyou are even thinking about getting any of RIM’s phones, you’ve probably already accepted to live with those – the mandatory BIS plan for emails and data traffic as well as the poor variety of apps and the high App World prices.

Blackberry Curve 9380 Blackberry Curve 9380 Blackberry Curve 9380 Blackberry Curve 9380
BlackBerry Curve 9380 live pictures

So, the Curve 9380 offers the latest BlackBerry experience on a cheaper price and without losing much of its appeal. The BlackBerry OS 7 on this Curve is as capable and fast as on the Torch 9860, the main difference being the lack of HD video recording.

Our traditional hardware tour starts right after the jump.

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