I was standing in the queue at the bank a few days ago when the Blackberry Tour beeped to signify that I had mail. I

Things I like about the BlackBerry 9630 Tour

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I was standing in the queue at the bank a few days ago when the Blackberry Tour beeped to signify that I had mail. I whipped it out and with one hand (the left), I whizzed through different menus, checking mails, and surfing webpages while on that line. All with one hand. It felt good to be able to do that again after a long time.

bb tour

It was such a pleasant and convenient thing, as I recalled that had it been the N900 I had on at that time, I would have had to put my chequebook under my arm so I could free my two hands for navigating the menu of the device.

Ease of Use
Simply put: the simplicity and one-handed use that the BlackBerry provides scores a very strong point in its favour. It is so refreshing.

I had written about this imonths back in an article, Usability and Non-touchscreen Phones, and it was a contributing factor to why the QWERTY candybar Samsung B7320 beat “more capable” devices to clinch for itself the spot of my Smartphone of the Year 2009.

A trackball, trackpad or D-pad beats touch for one-handed ease of use anyday.

Battery Life
The marathon battery life is also amazing. Of course, both the one-handed simplicity mentioned above and this astounding battery life are attributable (perhaps in part, but significantly) to the smaller size and non-touch nature of the display.

A touchscreen display would require more processing power and consequently less battery life. A larger display would require same.

Of course, I would prefer a slightly larger display to what obtains on the Tour, though I am not sure how that will be implemented on a QWERTY candybar. With a landscape display of 2.8 inches, the Motorola CHARM looks like the kind of device that’s right up my alley. It doesn’t have a trackball, trackpad or D-pad, which is essential for one-handed use. Still, hopefully, more of such devices will be available by April next year when I go smartphone shopping again.

Having used the Tour for a week, I am left wishing for the ease of one-handed usage and the kind of battery life that it has. Actually, if I get half the Tour’s battery performance on my N900, I would be in heaven. But the one-handed usage would still not be in sight.

Looking Forward
I have been waiting for Android-powered QWERTY candybar devices, and a few seem to be on the horizon. Perhaps then, I would have my wishes come true. Or at least in part.


  1. in my opinion, blackberries gets thejob done kinda like rashidi yekini,no dribbling just shot at goal

  2. an outstanding battery life is a really desirable feature in any mobile device… one of the advantages of non- touchscreen User Interface (UI) over touchscreens..

  3. The Glo BlackBerry U needs to be added to things I like about BB (from Glo).

    With as low as N25/minutes or 42kobo/second, N4800/month for bismonthly on 3.5G and 5GB data limit(not confirmed.

    Am I right to say they have the best BB in Nigeria.

  4. CONS on Blackberry

    1. It has a montly charge of 4.8k-5K for BIS service. if you dont intend to pay that, you are frankly missing the point of the Blackberry device.

    2. This one is quite unknown i think, blackberry apps can only be downloaded on the internal memory. And thats not all, it has a certain reserved amount of space for application on the memory. You soon find yourself picking a choosing apps very carefully. This is a big drawback. By the time you download, facebook, yahoo mess, msn, thompson reuters, bloomberg, twitter, google apps. your like ohh ohh. And meanwhile you have a giant empty memory card. 🙁

  5. @ chris I have over 35 apps installed on my blackberry bold 9700 and I still have lots of internal memory left, on the other hand i store all my media stuffs to my 8 gigs sd card. I guess that is a way around it.

  6. Well, on a Nokia 5230 with 60 apps, the phone comes with a 2GB and i noticed that it has used only about 5percent for apps. In my opinion I feel it is really good for platfoms to allow people to be able to instal apps on ext memory, this should not be a prob where the phone comes with good internal memory like those found in iphones, Andriod also dont allow apps to ext memory b4 but that has changed with froyo. Am not sure of win mobile, but trust nokia symbian you can instal it anywhere.

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