BlackBerry Torch 9810 review

Touchscreen, keyboard, 5MP snaps and a new OS - sound familiar?

BlackBerry Torch 9810
BB OS 7 and a touchscreen are big selling points of the BlackBerry Torch 9810

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BlackBerry torch 9810 review

If ever a BlackBerry was made for consuming media, the BlackBerry Torch 9810 is it. It's no Samsung Galaxy S2 or Apple iPhone 4, but it's definitely a decent BlackBerry media experience.

You can sync with the official software and drag across iTunes playlists successfully using the cable, and it's fast enough, with full albums popping over in a few seconds.

Video can also be dragged across, although we found that using the drag and drop method was far quicker than the dedicated software, which took an age. And with 40GB potentially in your hand, this trumps even the top end handset from Cupertino for storage.

BlackBerry torch 9810 review

Music-wise, you're able to create playlists on the device without pain. But there is an issue with album art. For some reason, most of our albums came across with a Bonnie Tyler album cover on, despite us only actually owning one of her CDs (it was a present, OK?).

The same can't be said for the loudspeaker, though. Where it functions brilliantly for calls or ringtones, we found that when it came to playing music out loud, it wasn't ideal. In fact, it was rubbish.

BlackBerry torch 9810 review

We're comparing this to our recent test of the Bold 9900. Here's what we had to say there:

"Now, we promise you we haven't had a drink. Nor have we taken a knock to the head. But when we listened to certain songs, we actually heard bits of them we'd never heard before. It may sound odd – but it's true. For example, Bright Lights Big City by Cee Lo Green begins with quite a large orchestral piece.

"We've played that song hundreds of times through an iPhone and a home stereo but only when listening to it on the BlackBerry Bold 9900 did we notice some of the strings and layers we'd never clocked before. Whether it's the way the music is processed or recorded or whether it's just down to the equaliser is anybody's guess but it sounded amazing and we were sold. We loved it!"

So, we eagerly loaded up the same song on the BlackBerry Torch 9810 and prepared ourselves for some musical magic. But it didn't come.

In the end, poor Cee Lo sounded like he was singing underwater. In fact, the volume seemed to go up and down so much that it sounded as if the BlackBerry Torch 9810 was having some kind of fit.

BlackBerry torch 9810 review

Not that this will be a deal breaker for you, unless you're a 16 year old planning on playing your music loud on the bus to annoy pensioners. But to us, it was definitely a disappointment. Through headphones, it all sounded so much better.

Watching video back was a pleasure. Colours are rendered properly and the phone lends itself to watching videos in landscape.

Unfortunately, there's just no way of propping it up on its own, so unless you plan on holding the Torch 9810 with your hands for the entire duration of a movie, you may end up limiting video watching to short clips.

BlackBerry torch 9810 review

Pictures can be synced with the desktop software, and individual albums also copied across. They appear as they should in the BlackBerry Torch 9810, with no stray photos, which isn't what we expected.

Speaking of video, the YouTube icon is there (although it's actually just a bookmark to the mobile site) but there's no FM radio. We're disappointed about that, but not surprised. RIM has never included an FM radio in any of its handsets, despite the fact people still listen to the radio.