BlackBerry curve 9380 review

The latest batch of BlackBerry phones, including the Torch 9860, Bold 9900 and Curve 9360 and the BlackBerry Curve 9380 here, feature a much-improved browser as part of BlackBerry OS 7.

It's faster than ever before, helped along with 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi and HSDPA 3G mobile internet connectivity. The fact that the BlackBerry Curve 9380 picks up signal so well helps it keep good 3G speeds in particular.

We were pleasantly surprised to see that page loading speeds haven't really been affected by the reduction in horsepower from the higher-end OS 7 handsets. There's little speed difference from the Torch, and it's actually not that much slower than powerful handsets such as the iPhone 4S and HTC Sensation XE for many sites.

That's not to say the whole experience is rosy, sadly. The responsiveness is all over the place, for a start. Sometimes pinching to zoom responds fine, while at other times it's extremely slow and juddery, or the site suddenly disappears while it redraws and then reappears in a different place to where you were zooming.

Things like text reflow work well, and help to mitigate the blockiness of text on the 360 x 480 screen, but still tend to be a bit slow - you can double-tap on a column of text and end up waiting for a couple of seconds before everything catches up.

BlackBerry curve 9380 review

The browser has plenty of features, though. You can have several pages open and switch between them using a carousel at the top. It's not quite as slick as on the more powerful handsets, but it works well enough.

BlackBerry curve 9380 review

From the Menu key, you can search the page, bookmark a site, add the site to your Home screen and share the page in numerous ways, including BBM, email, Facebook and Twitter.

BlackBerry curve 9380 review

There's no Flash support, but that's probably a wise move considering the meagre power of the CPU.

Although the page loading speeds on the BlackBerry Curve 9380 are rather impressive, it's an extremely poor browsing experience overall, and the blame lies firmly with the serious touch-responsiveness issues.