The Good The RIM BlackBerry 8700g offers easy e-mail setup and adds support for popular instant-messaging clients. The quadband 8700g also comes with an Intel processor, EDGE speeds, Bluetooth 2.0, a speakerphone, and a full QWERTY keyboard.
The Bad The BlackBerry 8700g's keyboard feels a bit cheap and slippery. Also, there are no expansion options, and we encountered some problems viewing PDFs on the device.
The Bottom Line The RIM BlackBerry 8700g offers T-Mobile consumer and business users a robust, user-friendly messaging device and cell phone with great performance.
BlackBerry 8700g (T-Mobile)
RIM BlackBerry 8700g
Ever since the Research in Motion-vs.-NTP battle escalated, we haven't heard too much from RIM in terms of product announcements--until now. Along with T-Mobile, RIM introduced the BlackBerry 8700g at CTIA this year, replacing the and sprucing up T-Mobile's smart-phone lineup. Like its cousin, the , the BlackBerry 8700g offers users a next-gen device with a full QWERTY keyboard, and it comes with an Intel processor and EDGE speeds for faster performance. In addition to support for Bluetooth 2.0 and up to 10 corporate or personal e-mail accounts, the 8700g offers some extras that make it more consumer-friendly and easier to use right out of the box than the 8700c. Overall, the device delivers on all fronts: as a phone, an e-mail machine, and a handheld. The RIM BlackBerry 8700g will cost $299.99 with a two-year contract (or $349.99 with a one-year contract) and will be available on April 17. Unlike the it replaces, the RIM BlackBerry 8700g offers a sleeker and more compact package at 4.3 by 2.7 by 0.7 inches and 4.7 ounces. Sure, it doesn't have the cell phone form factor of the BlackBerry 7100 series, and if you're new to BlackBerrys, the device's squarish shape will take acclimation, but in return, you get a full QWERTY keyboard and a spacious 2.5-inch-diagonal QVGA display.
While we're on the subject, the BlackBerry 8700g's screen is gorgeous. It displays 65,000 hues with a 320x240-pixel resolution--a vast improvement over the BlackBerry 7290. Colors are vibrant, with sharp, clearly defined images and text. It's great for navigating the intuitive menu or for viewing Web pages and images. The display also features a light-sensing technology that automatically adjusts for your environment, depending on whether you're indoors, outdoors, or in the dark. We put it to the test, and we're happy to report that the screen was always readable. You can also adjust the backlight's brightness and time-out settings, as well as font size and type, all through the Options menu. A small LED above the screen flashes different colors to alert you to various messages: green for network activity, red for message notification, yellow for low battery, and blue for Bluetooth connectivity.
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