Feast your eyes on the all new Blackberry Storm — launched today on Vodafone — but available from next month (and hopefully free from Bold-style OS issues).
First, a glorious gratuitous full screen shot please:
And, when you tilt the device, how’s it look?
When you touch it, it feels like a button — so says Frank Rovekamp, CMO Vodafone. In fact if you’d like to see what he thinks of it, here then is a video — yes — a video, produced by Big Red — of him talking about the device:
I’m rather impressed. This is the kind of communication I’d like to see from other operators.
My biggest issue with the Storm is that it’s not necessarily a direct-upgrade-path from your traditional Blackberry with a QWERTY keyboard. Frank demonstrates the keyboard in the video — on-screen Pearl style keyboard if you hold the device vertically, QWERTY if you turn the device horizontal — and the screen feels buttonish. That should help. Here’s what Vodafone say about the screen:
The uniquely tactile 3.25Ã¢â‚¬Â screen gives users a variety of different sense experiences. Despite its flat surface, users feel the sensation of actually pressing down on virtual keys which also light up when touched. This makes it quick and easy to type texts and emails as well as navigate through the phone’s functions. Customers will also have the choice of using a full QWERTY, SureType® or multi-tap keyboard.
There’s a lot of folk out there — a lot of traditional business people in smart suits — who can only just use a Blackberry. And they’ve ‘only just’ been using a Blackberry for years. They haven’t explored any of its features other than email, phone, contacts, calendar and … of course… the keyboard. They’re all USED to the keyboard.
So I’ve been somewhat alarmed when I hear companies automatically planning on upgrading their entire Blackberry fleet to the Storm. Test it first. Check it out, have a look. It’ll be mayhem in the Executive Suite if they don’t ‘get’ the on-screen keyboard.
This said, there’s a lot to admire on the Storm. 3.2MP camera — with video. Good news. You can directly upload pictures to Flickr. I’ve no doubt there will be a custom Facebook client — like the existing one.
3G of course. Glorious looking screen (480×360 pixels). Launch countries? Europe, India, Australia and New Zealand territories are getting the Storm. The scramble for the Storm starts next month.
I’d definitely like to take a look at one. And I’m particularly interested to try out the keyboard. That’s perhaps something I might be able to get comfortable with.
I do a lot of blogging — via Posterous (which is a stunning service, by the way) — from my Blackberry Curve. I write the post in an email and send it to Posterous — who convert it on-the-fly to my MIR Live blog. We then automatically pull from the RSS feed into the main Mobile Industry Review. Key to this experience is me being able to type fast. The only device that lets me do this is the Curve. No other mobile keyboard comes close. Yet.
So I’ll take a look at the Storm. But I have a feeling I might be better with a Blackberry Bold. As will the legions of lawyers and accountants — the mainstay corporate customers that keep Blackberry on 3 meals a day.
What about you? If you’re choosing… Bold or Storm?
(Read the full Voda Storm release here).