X

RIM BlackBerry Curve 8520 photos

The RIM BlackBerry Curve 8520 offers a new optical trackpad and dedicated media keys. Take a closer look in our hands-on photo gallery.

headshots_bonnie_cha_140x100.jpg
headshots_bonnie_cha_140x100.jpg

Bonnie Cha

See full bio

337368592440FT.jpg
1 of 10 Josh Miller/CNET

RIM BlackBerry Curve 8520

The RIM BlackBerry Curve 8520 is an entry-level smartphone available from T-Mobile for $129.99 with a two-year contract. However, you can also get the device at Wal-Mart for just $48.88 with a two-year new agreement or a qualified upgrade.
2 of 10 Josh Miller/CNET

New design

The Curve 8520 is probably most notable for its design since it brings a couple of new tricks to the table: an optical trackpad and dedicated media keys.
337368592440DT1.jpg
3 of 10 Josh Miller/CNET

Curve 8520 vs. Curve 8900

The overall look of the Curve 8520 is similar to the Curve 8900, and the two models actually share the same measurements at 4.3 inches tall by 2.3 inches wide by 0.5 inch thick. The Curve 8520 is a smidge lighter, but we thought the phone felt slightly plasticky.
337368592440DT2.jpg
4 of 10 Josh Miller/CNET

Optical track pad

Replacing the trackball navigator is the optical trackpad. Though we weren't huge fans of the one on the Samsung Omnia, we have to say the transition from the trackball to the optical trackpad on the Curve 8520 was quite easy. Aside from the difference in feel (flat versus spherical), it wasn't much of a change.
337368592440PALM.jpg
5 of 10 Josh Miller/CNET

Display

The Curve 8520 features a 2.46-inch TFT display that shows 65,000 colors at a more lowly 320x240-pixel resolution, so it's not quite as sharp as some of the screens we've seen on the latest BlackBerrys.
337368592440SD.jpg
6 of 10 Josh Miller/CNET

External controls

The dedicated media keys are located on top of the device (track forward, back, play/pause). On the right side, you get a volume rocker and a user-programmable button. The aforementioned controls are slightly different in that there are slight bumps along the surface rather than the traditional buttons you're used to seeing on a BlackBerry.
337368592440PURSE.jpg
7 of 10 Josh Miller/CNET

Pocket friendly

You'll have no problem slipping the sleek BlackBerry Curve 8520 into a pants pocket or a purse.
337368592440BUTTON.jpg
8 of 10 Josh Miller/CNET

QWERTY keyboard

The Curve 8520's QWERTY keyboard is pretty similar to the 8900's. The buttons are pretty small and packed close together, so users with larger fingers might have some problems at first.
337368592440BK.jpg
9 of 10 Josh Miller/CNET

Camera

The BlackBerry Curve 8520 features a 2-megapixel camera with video-recording capabilities and a 5x digital zoom.
337368592440SS1.jpg
10 of 10 Josh Miller/CNET

Decent picture quality

Picture quality was pretty good. Images were clear and colors, while not the most vibrant, didn't have a weird orange or grayish tone like some other camera phones.

More Galleries

2022's Best TV Shows You Can't Miss on Netflix, HBO, Disney Plus and More

More Galleries

2022's Best TV Shows You Can't Miss on Netflix, HBO, Disney Plus and More

94 Photos
2023 Honda CR-V Is Coming This Summer

More Galleries

2023 Honda CR-V Is Coming This Summer

4 Photos
'Stranger Things' Stars Then and Now: Wow, They've Really Grown Up

More Galleries

'Stranger Things' Stars Then and Now: Wow, They've Really Grown Up

40 Photos
The 40 Best Games on Nintendo Switch

More Galleries

The 40 Best Games on Nintendo Switch

41 Photos
Movies Coming in 2022 From Marvel, Netflix, DC and More

More Galleries

Movies Coming in 2022 From Marvel, Netflix, DC and More

80 Photos
2023 Acura Integra Is a New Age Sport Compact

More Galleries

2023 Acura Integra Is a New Age Sport Compact

56 Photos
Maserati MC20 Cielo Is a Gorgeous Italian Spyder

More Galleries

Maserati MC20 Cielo Is a Gorgeous Italian Spyder

70 Photos