BlackBerry Torch review

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

The definitive BlackBerry Torch 9800 review
The definitive BlackBerry Torch 9800 review

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BlackBerry Torch review: Battery life

Users have always claimed BlackBerry devices have the best batteries, but we were expecting this one to not be very good – especially because of that large screen.

In practice, however, we were blown away by just how good it was.

BlackBerry torch

We took it off charge with a full battery at 11pm on a Tuesday evening. By 6am, it had gone down just one per cent. Over the coming day, we streamed music over Bluetooth for two hours, watched a 20-minute video, made about 80 minutes of calls, used Google Maps (with GPS on – traditionally, a battery hogger) for 15 minutes, sent eight SMS and 16 emails and received around 10 Facebook/Twitter messages.

Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and 3G were on continuously. Despite this hammering of the battery, it was late Thursday morning before it finally gave up. That's almost 36 hours of heavy use. This really is a workhorse.

BlackBerry torch

Blackberry claims the Torch will give 5.5 hours of talk time and up to 27 hours of music playback. It sounds a lot but – based on our experience – not beyond the realms of possibility. What's interesting is the fact that this phone only has a 1300mAh battery.

Anything less than 1400mAh on a smartphone would usually get a sneer and an upturned nose, but it's clear here that RIM has put a lot of effort into making sure that it doesn't guzzle juice like it could have.

If we had to pick one gripe about the battery, it's that you have to delve all the way into the menu to get an accurate reading of how much juice is left.

BlackBerry torch

It would be much easier to be able to get a percentage reading by tapping the battery icon on the Home screen in the way that tapping other icons brings up their respective options (eg. Tapping the profiles icon brings up a list of profile options.)