BlackBerry Storm 2 review

Can it fix the failings of the original Storm?

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Call quality on the BlackBerry Storm 2 is excellent, which isn't something we were expecting on a messaging-centric device.

The clarity both to and from the caller was crystal clear, although we did have a few problems with dropped calls. In one instance the call dropped three times in the space of four minutes – it was almost iPhone-like in its stability (which is not something to aspire to).

We're hoping it's a one-off problem with the device we were given, or a temporary problem with the network, but it's the first time this has happened to us and it's always odd when a random problem affects a review handset.

BlackBerry storm 2

Coverage was good though, with 3G hanging on well when necessary. One quibble would be an apparent desire to drop to GPRS on occasion when it was proved we had two bars of signal – clearly RIM is looking for a more stable signal for voice and messaging rather than looking at a fast connection at all times, which you can understand given its low-data heritage.

The calling interface was good though, with an easy-to-read set of names laid out on a white background. Scrolling through was easy enough, either through a simple flick or by clicking the down arrow to move through at a faster pace.

At the top there's the option of looking through the list by searching for the name – but we don't think anyone's going to do that on a touchscreen as it's simply too much effort.

If you've got Facebook Connect added to the Storm 2, you also get a spot of Facebook notification as well with your contacts. Scrolling through the list will show where they work (or what group they belong to) and will also add in their Facebook picture too.

BlackBerry storm 2

We're great fans of this functionality on the Motorola Dext and the HTC Hero, and it's good to see it here. It also means you can poke or message the person direct from their contact profile, which takes the hassle out of social networking.

BlackBerry storm 2

There's a variety of information you can add to a contact to make it easier to interact with them from the Storm 2 – obviously you can pop a picture on there, but you can also add a birthday, web page or company information too, which is useful when it's a work contact (or someone you like to stalk but are pretty forgetful).

The dialler is similarly simple to use – it has large, easy-to-hit buttons and a call list to choose from. It doesn't allow smart dialling (where you can start typing a name using the keypad and it presents a list of possible names to choose from based on the keystroke combination) but you can select a contact and find out your exact call history to and from that number.

Tech Specs

Product TypeSmartphone
Network BandQuad Band
Service ProviderVodafone
Wireless LANYes
Maximum Memory Card Size Supported16 GB
Built-in Memory2 GB
Built-in FlashYes
Memory Card SlotYes
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyGPRS, EDGE, HSDPA
GPS ReceiverYes
Product FamilyStorm2
Cellular Network SupportedGSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1800, GSM 1900, WCDMA 2100
Rear Camera Resolution3.2 Megapixel
Memory Card SupportedmicroSD
Phone StyleBar
Operating SystemBlackBerry
Brand Namevodafone
Battery Talk Time6 Hour
Product Model9520
Screen Size8.3 cm (3.3")
Screen Resolution480 x 360
Weight (Approximate)160 g
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 2.1
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email, Instant Messaging
USB StandardUSB 2.0
Height112.5 mm
Width62 mm
Depth13.9 mm
Battery Standby Time280 Hour
ManufacturerVodafone Group
Product NameBlackBerry Storm2 9520 Smartphone (Locked)
Product LineStorm2
Screen TypeLCD
Sensor TypeAccelerometer
Manufacturer Part Number67750
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

Love the big picture with the BlackBerry Storm2 9520 smartphone. Stay in touch using next generation SurePress technology. Connect quickly on a 3G network, and just about anywhere with Wi-Fi capabilities.