The Teen First Look: BlackBerry Torch 4G
We recently got a chance to spend a few minutes with the latest BlackBerry Torch 4G, and to say we were impressed would be a major understatement. We’re gonna get right to it– this is everything the first Torch should’ve been (yeah, it’s that good).
On the first Torch things were slow, it froze a ton, and the screen just looked downright pathetic next to top phones like the EVO 4G and iPhone 4. And while this new Torch isn’t necessarily better than the iPhone 4 or Infuse 4G, it’s now much closer and without a doubt in our minds the best BlackBerry available today on AT&T (well, at least until the Bold 9900 finally comes out).
Put simply, this BlackBerry just works. Design wise the Torch 4G looks nearly identical to the first Torch (their both the exact same size and both feel solid in your hands and have that awesome slide out BlackBerry keyboard), but don’t be fooled– this is the Torch you’re gonna want. Many of Torch 4G’s upgrades took place and under the hood and wow are they some nice upgrades.
The screen, while the same 3.2 inches as the original Torch, is a huge upgrade over last year’s Torch with videos, pictures and text all now looking extremely sharp and crystal clear. Think of this like the iPhone 4′s Retina Display next to an iPhone 3GS– the upgrade here is that big.
The Torch 4G is a lot faster under the hood too thanks to it’s much faster 1.2 GHZ processor with 768 MB of RAM. Like the screen, the difference here is huge. On the first Torch we constantly were seeing it freeze up and become unusable for minutes at a time even when doing basic things like switching from BBM to the web. That’s not at all true here. Everything opened up quick and we hardly ever saw the phone freeze up.
We also were impressed with BlackBerry 7, and while it’s not a major upgrade from BlackBerry 6, it’s still a lot nicer to look at and apps like BBM all run as they should– fast and well. One thing that we wish got a bigger improvement though is the browser, which is better but still is pathetic when compared to Android, iPhone and Windows Phone 7. But hey, it’ll get the job done if you’re looking for some quick scores or want to Google something.
And for those wondering about the 4G part of the phone, we found it be a little faster than the 3G-only first Torch but not by much. Like the browser it gets the job done, but if you’re looking for a real 4G AT&T BlackBerry you’re gonna need to wait until AT&T rolls out their true 4G LTE network which will bring some really fast 4G speeds (the problem with this though is that you’ll probably need to wait until next year for any 4G LTE BlackBerrys and the Torch 4G– like all of AT&T’s other 4G phones today– won’t work on the new 4G LTE network and will be stuck on the slower HSPA+ network).
All in all, if you’re on AT&T and looking for a new BlackBerry right now you’re not gonna find one better than the Torch 4G. It’s fast, looks great and at only $50 on contract is practically a steal. If the Torch’s sliding style isn’t for you then we recommend waiting for the Bold 4G 9900 (aka the Bold Touch) which is very similar to the Torch 4G but in that more traditional BlackBerry design (we saw the Verizon Bold 9930 and T-Mobile 9900 very briefly recently as well– not long enough for a first look– but it basically lives up to the hype in our opinion as the best BlackBerry yet).
Hopefully AT&T will release that soon (we asked but couldn’t get a date out of AT&T though hopefully since T-Mobile, Sprint and Verizon all released their versions a few weeks ago it’ll be here soon), but again, if you’re looking for a new AT&T BlackBerry today we really think you’ll love the Torch 4G.
The Torch 4G is available now for $50 with new 2 year contract and data plan from AT&T