Day: January 18, 2010

BlackBerry Storm 2 (9530) Review

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I have recently put two fingers up to both T-Mobile and Sony Ericsson. Sick of my C905; nothing much WRONG with it but just old… bland… dull…

Lol. I wanted a new gadget.

A BlackBerry attracted me for a while – all the benefits of a smartphone, without resorting to an iPhone, with hundreds of useless apps. I also like the email and internet functionality of them. However, I did want a touchscreen phone, and that meant only the Storm series – specifically the BlackBerry Storm 2.

Now, for those who don’t know, it’s a very good idea to research phones etc before buying. And I did. The original Storm was plagued with gripes. The Storm line uses this interesting type of touchscreen, where it IS a touchscreen but it’s also a click-screen too. Sound odd? It is a little, but after getting used to it, I can say it feels great. But the point is, it was kinda poorly executed on the first Storm. As was the OS, a bit slow and glitchy.

Did the Storm 2 fix its predecessor’s problems? Yes indeed it did! And to be honest, I can’t be bothered with a huge review, so here’s the scoop. The Storm 2 is an excellent phone.

Battery life is the smartphone standard of 1-2 days depending on usage and what you have turned on. Email works intuitively and fast, as does SMS / MMS. My one gripe is that SMS and MMS do not flow together in the conversation view. The built in browser, if a little slow sometimes, is dependable, and besides Opera Mini works great. All the apps I have so far have integrated really well into the OS, appearing in context menus and other places where relevant.

Anything more specific… um I dunno. Let’s do a quick pros and cons:

Pros:

* Screen clickyness feels great and allows for fast QWERTY typing. Improved over Storm (1) version which was mechanical. Now is electrical.
* Interface is mostly lag-free
* Decent integrated camera, for a smartphone
* Intelligence around the phone’s tilt during calls etc
* up to 32 GB SDHC Media Card and a pretty good MP3 interface
* Multitouch

Cons:

* No pinch-to-zoom (probably copyright or something :@)
* Cold-start (battery pull) time is very long
* Fingerprint magnet
* Many options in settings – I doubt most people would want to use the more colourful ones but they are mixed in with the regular ones so it would be easy to get confused
* Changes on the media card take a while to reflect properly in the device (it will detect the changes and ‘scan’ for ages, and might still get it wrong. A battery pull works for this though)

That’s all I can be bothered with right now. Sunday night – past midnight. Night.

Virus Alert – PDF Exploit

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Just a heads up that there is currently a nasty exploit on PDF files doing the rounds. It’s based on a vulnerability in Adobe PDF Reader / Acrobat 9.2 and lower, and can act through browser plugins.

The best protection is to avoid any untrusted PDF files. Most antivirus software does not detect affected PDFs as of yet. Failing that, DEP affords some protection – if it’s available to you its likely already turned on. Outlook users should be sure that Outlook isn’t set to automatically preview PDF files, this might trigger the exploit.

Peace out!