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Blackberry 9900 Review – Part 1


We all have been waiting for a decent touchscreen device coupled together with the best qwerty keyboard on the market from RIM and finally, our wait is over! Read on to see what its like!

Blackberry Bold Touch 9900

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Price: Available at all 3 Telco’s Singtel, M1, Starhub


Coming out with a largest screen (with a full qwerty keyboard range), the widest keyboard, this new flagship device is definitely a unique breed of its own out here.

BlackBerry Bold 9900 Tech Specs

  • BlackBerry 7 OS
  • Single core, QC 8655, 1200 MHz
  • 768 MB RAM
  • 2.8-inch TFT screen (640 x 480 pixels)
  • 4.53 x 2.60 x 0.41 (115 x 66 x 10.5 mm)
  • 4.59 oz (130 g)
  • 5 megapixel rear camera with LED flash
  • Bluetooth 2.1
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n
  • 3.5mm headphone jack
  • NFC
  • A-GPS
  • Accelerometer, Compass
  • 1230 mAh battery

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The Bold Touch also introduced a new battery door, moving away from the standard leather kind found in the previous Bold models, they have introduced the use of Carbon Fibre, giving it the smooth and shiny interface.

Whilst this looks real good at the first look, after some usage it does seem to be quite prone to scratches which is not a good thing for users seeking some action.

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The chasis of the phone is made up of stainless steel which is brushed-effect at the side whist the top was of shiny silver. The Shiny silver portion seems to be pretty prone to scratches as well.


The speaker now is located at the bottom of the phone, still at the back, as opposed to the previous models which were found at the top.

The quality from the speaker is amazing from the size and it probably would be one of the best sounds we have heard from such a mobile device.

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The keyboard on the 9900 is said to be bigger than the 9000 series and even 9780 series. This makes the 9900 larger in width than the 9000 which many already consider it to be too big for a phone.
However, I must say this larger size is a very positive thing for this device. After using this device for 2 weeks, this keyboard is indeed a breeze to type with, out shining that of my favourite 8900 and my 9780, making it so addictive to type on it.
The trackpad on the other hand, feels more depressed as compared to the 9780 which is more raised, which i would have prefered.
On this unit i got, the buttons surrounding the trackpad feels and sounds so squeky, which is unlike other units I borrowed to play with. This might be some flaws in the manufacturing process which should be taken note of.


The screen’s higher resolution (640×480) is indeed beautiful crisp and clear, one of the sharpest screen we have seen to date on a Blackberry device. Even the emails and text looks so clear, which I believe many have been yearning for it.

The screen as you can see, doesn’t work with a cloth, however, without the cloth, using my finger alone, it is very responsive.


The standard applications that came with the 9900, which are also present in the older devices, which are mainly the BlackBerry Social Feeds and BlackBerry Protect.


The new applications that came with the 9900 includes Wikitude and the Compass app. Whilst I have yet to test the accuracy of the Compass, it seems to be a good measure to include it in putting it on par with competition which have already offered this service. On the Wikitude hand, it does seem to work pretty well, but on its accuracy, we have yet to accurately check on it here in Singapore.


One new thing we have spotted in the menu, under mobile connections is the ease of connecting to Playbook via Bridge connectivity and for activating the brand new NFC which this new device sports.


The battery this new Bold sports is the J-M1, which is a new refresh from the usual M-S1. The J-M1, unfortunately, sports only 1230 mAh of battery juice, whilst the M-S1 sports 1550 mAh, hence, we can expect the device to have much less battery life than the previous models. Additionally, its supped up processor running at 2x the speed of the previous models and coupled with a mobile GPU which is not found on the previous models, the device can be expected to suck even more power than before.
However, from our 2 weeks of usage, the 1230 mAh does indeed seem to equate to a 1230 mAh M-S1, with more or less equal power discharge per mAh. But this also meant that because its capacity is much lower than that of the M-S1, the battery life is of course much lower on the J-M1. However, on intensive tasks such as streaming of data, it will drain battery extremely quickly.

On a normal usage, it lasted about 12-18 hours. (Note: for us, the 9780 only lasts up to 22 hours)
On a intensive usage, sending emails with large attachment, it lasts only about 4-5 hours.


Taken with the 9900 under optimal lighting with different modes, it feels very washed.


  • High resolution screen, crisp and responsive
  • 8GB of built in memory, expandable up to 32GB via MicroSD card
  • Nice and wide keyboard
  • Solid build
  • Comes with Contact Pin for charging via charging pod
  • High-Resolution Video Camera


  • Low Battery Capacity
  • Only one convenience key
  • 5 Mega-Pixel camera is shoddy
  • Hard to remove Micro-SD card.

Overall, this is a extremely good upgrade for BlackBerry device, no matter what was the previous device you have used, this is a device you will love. However, its weak battery, weak camera may put a lot of people off. With that aside, it would definitely be one packing sufficient power for our modern internet world and if its camera is last of your woes, this should definitely be in your hands.

Note: A review unit was provided for this review

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