RIM BlackBerry 8700g Regina SK

With its vibrant colour screen and dedicated call answer and end buttons, RIM's new BlackBerry seems more like a high-tech mobile phone than a portable email device.

Supreme Basics
(306) 566-8888
1916 Dewdney Ave
Regina, SK
 
Heartland Office Furnishings
(306) 522-2900
240 12th Ave E
Regina, SK
 
Grand & Toy
(306) 721-1800
309 Park St
Regina, SK
 
Ecol Direct Mail Svc
(306) 522-4878
312 Mcdonald St
Regina, SK
 
Heartland Office Furnishings
(306) 522-2900
240 12th Ave E
Regina, SK
 
Nrg Tele Resources
(306) 790-1800
1919 Rose St
Regina, SK
 
Staples Business Depot
(306) 546-1870
660 Albert St
Regina, SK
 
Office Depot
(306) 347-0908
1275 Albert St
Regina, SK
 
Coutts Quality Svc & Sales
(306) 536-9536
151 Hanbidge Cres
Regina, SK
 
Office Depot
(306) 347-0908
1275 Albert St
Regina, SK
 

RIM BlackBerry 8700g

Provided By:

With its vibrant colour screen and dedicated call answer and end buttons, RIM's new BlackBerry seems more like a high-tech mobile phone than a portable email device.

While its blue and silver finish still looks businesslike, the silver details show that RIM is trying to inject some style into its top-of-the-range handset. The new handset is slimmer and narrower than its predecessor, so it's also much easier to grip when you're using it as a phone.

The most striking aspect of the 8700g is its screen. While previous BlackBerry handsets had colour screens, the 8700g has a 65,000-colour, 360x240-pixel resolution display, offering far more colour and a higher resolution than previous BlackBerry models.

The traditional BlackBerry interface is still intact. You use the thumbwheel on the right of the handset to scroll through menu options and click to select. However, as this is the first BlackBerry with a full-sized keyboard to have dedicated call answer and end buttons, you no longer have to fiddle with the thumbwheel to answer calls or hang up. Call quality is also superb; despite being bulkier than most handsets, the 8700g works well as a phone.

Despite the flashy interface, the 8700g is still primarily a messaging device and it excels in this area. The handset uses push email to deliver messages, so you don't have to log into your mail server and periodically check for messages. Instead, they are delivered straight to the handset. The email client is logical and easy to use, and when you check your messages you have the option of reading each email a bit at a time to save time downloading. Typing messages is fairly easy on the keyboard, although the handset's reduced width means the keys are more tightly spaced than on previous BlackBerries.

The email client also deals remarkably well with attachments. The handset supports all the normal Windows image formats, as well as PowerPoint, Word, Excel and PDF documents. Sadly, Word documents lose their formatting and the handset can display only the text of PowerPoint and PDF files, but Excel spreadsheets are displayed in a clear table format.

You can't use the BlackBerry to edit documents the way you can on a Windows Mobile PDA, though. The 8700g also has a built-in web browser, but it doesn't make such a good job of formatting pages to fit the screen as Pocket Internet Explorer.

The 8700g uses RIM's own connectivity software to connect to your PC, using either the supplied USB cable or Bluetooth. Connecting using Bluetooth is refreshingly easy provided you have Windows XP Service Pack 2 installed and use Microsoft's own Bluetooth stack. The Desktop Manager software lets you back up and restore the device, load new applications or synchronise with Outlook, GroupWise or Lotus Notes.

RIM's BlackBerry 8700g is the best mobile-messaging device available, but it is very expensive compared to T-Mobile's Sidekick II and less versatile than a Windows Mobile smartphone PDA.

System Specifications

SMARTPHONE Quad-Band, 360x240 resolution LCD, 312MHz Intel PXA901 processor, 64MB memory, Bluetooth, BlackBerry 4 operating system

Author: Chris Finnamore

Computer Shopper Online