BlackBerry Torch review

A slider, a touchscreen, a new approach. But can the Torch keep RIMs fire burning?

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BlackBerry Torch review: Video

Video recording, however, leaves a lot to be desired. 640 x 480 is the limit, sadly.

BlackBerry torch

The Torch has a good camera, it has a good light (a torch, even), but why has RIM only kept the video at such a measly resolution? Viewing videos back isn't bad – it's just not good either. And that's a shame because you can see how much RIM is going for the media selling points with OS 6.

blackberry torch review

With blocky pictures and tinny audio, it once again makes you feel that in some ways, it just hasn't thought this through. It's not awful, it's just not mind blowing. The Torch could very well be capable of HD recording – but they've left it out because of the smaller processor. We'll see what happens when the Torch 2 is released.

Another let down with video is the option to send. You can film in MMS mode or you can film in full VGA mode. But you can't send VGA clips to others except by Bluetooth, YouTube or BBM, which is ridiculous.

Back in 2004, the Samsung D500 had a 1.3MP camera and it would not let you resize photos for MMS. That was a massive omission. And yet, seven years later, RIM still can't manage this for video (although it does with photos).

Here's why it's a problem – let's say you see something funny in the street and want to take a video, you'll have your Torch set on maximum (VGA resolution), because that's best for playback. But if you want to send it by MMS or email to somebody, you have to fiddle in the settings to get it to MMS mode, which takes time and you risk missing what you wanted to point-and-shoot at.

It wouldn't be impossible to add some kind of code that gives the option to resize for MMS. If Apple can manage it, if Nokia can manage it, then it's ridiculous that RIM can't offer it too.

Tech Specs

Product TypeSmartphone
Network BandQuad Band
Service Provider3
Input MethodTouchscreen, QWERTY
Wireless LANYes
Maximum Memory Card Size Supported32 GB
Built-in Memory512 MB
Built-in FlashYes
Memory Card SlotYes
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyGPRS, EDGE, HSDPA, HSUPA
SAR Value0.86 W/kg
GPS ReceiverYes
Product FamilyTorch
Cellular Generation3.5G
Cellular Network SupportedGSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1800, GSM 1900, WCDMA 850, WCDMA 1900, WCDMA 2100
Rear Camera Resolution5 Megapixel
Memory Card SupportedmicroSD
Phone StyleSlider
Operating SystemBlackBerry
Brand NameBlackBerry
Battery Talk Time5.50 Hour
Product Model9800
Screen Size8.1 cm (3.2")
Screen Resolution480 x 360
Touchscreen TypeCapacitive
Weight (Approximate)161.1 g
Maximum Video Resolution640 x 480
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 2.1
Operating System VersionBlackBerry OS 6.0
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email, Instant Messaging
USB StandardUSB 2.0
Height111 mm
Width62 mm
Depth14.6 mm
Battery Standby Time408 Hour
Product NameTorch 9800 Smartphone
Processor Speed624 MHz
Product LineTorch
Screen TypeLCD
Sensor TypeProximity Sensor
Manufacturer Part NumberTHRTORCH9800BLK
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

Maximized Multimedia


With 8 GB of memory, expandable up to 32 GB with a microSD card, feel free to immerse yourself in all that inspires you.

Pinch and zoom

Use your fingers to pinch a screen for a zoomed out effect and expand two fingers to zoom in.

Enhanced music player

Thanks to BlackBerry 6 and a large screen, you can experience a full-featured music player that allows you to see full album art and track listings in portrait or landscape.