Looks like there was a one week lag between the official announcement and the retail availibilty, but today is the day. Verizon is selling the Storm2 for 179.99 with a 2 year contract if you’re inlove with this device…or you can just wait for the Motorola Droid (official announcement in a few hours).
Source: Verizon thanks for the tip Marco
Pocketnow has just posted a fairly good video comparaison of the BlackBerry Storm and Storm2.
They’ve also posted a hardware tour of the Storm2:
As I said earlier it looks like the devices is too little too late compared to phones like the HTC HD2 and Motorola Droid. Maybe RIM should stick to non-touchscreen devices…
Here’s a short hands-on video of the newly (and finally) announced BlackBerry Storm2 done by IntoMobile. The device definitely looks snappier than the original Storm:
The CrackBerry junkies are the first to post a full blown review of RIM‘s second touchscreen smrttphone, the Storm2 and frankly it doesn’t look that exciting to me. What I get after reading the review is that RIM fiannly fixed all the major bugs/problem of the original Storm (mainly the sluggyness of the software and the new SurePress screen). The browser still doesn’t support tabed browsing, no Multi-Touch in their as well even though the hardware supports it etc…You can hatethe iPhone as much as you but it’s kind of sad when one of the most exciting feature of the Storm2 is the proximity sensor…(which Apple introduced on the Original iPhone in 2007).
The BlackBerry Storm2′s enhanced SurePress technology addresses the issues of the BlackBerry Storm’s original SurePress design:
•Consistent Pressure – Because the screen is now sitting on four evenly spaced ‘buttons’ (for lack of a better word), the amount of pressure required to create a click is consistent regardless of where you press.
•Multi-press capabilities – The improved SurePress hardware allows you to click on more than one part of the screen at a time. Taking advantage of this, RIM has allowed the software to now register two inputs on the keyboard. This is extremely beneficial when typing on the full qwerty keyboard in landscape. When typing letters across the keyboard from each (you are alternating between your left and right thumbs), you can now execute these letters more quickly as you can press the next letter without waiting for the screen to finish rebounding from the previous letter. It’s more like typing on a physical full qwerty smartphone.
•Smoother Rebound – Clicking in and out on the BlackBerry Storm2′s display is simply much smoother now, thanks again to the four electric button design. Use it side by side with the Storm and you’ll immediately feel the difference.
•Face Detection feature! – Last, but certainly not least, the BlackBerry Storm2 features a proximity sensor that powers down the display when the phone is next to your ear on a call. Earlier hardware/software versions we have seen of the Storm2 never possessed this feature, but this review unit certainly does. Simply start talking with the BlackBerry Storm2 against your ear and the screen powers down – no more ear typing! As soon as you pull the phone away from your ear the screen powers on and you can enable calling features (mute, speakerphone, etc.). Finally!!
All in all the Storm2 is a solid device and truly what the original Storm should have been.
Read the full review here
It’s now official, RIM’s second touchscreen smartphone is now partially out in the wild. Vodafone just announced that the BlackBerry Storm2
is up for pre-order. I’m personaly really intesrested in the new piezoelectric
screen featured on the device, hopefully hands-on reviews are going to start to pop-up soon.
Here’s the Press Release:
New SurePress Technology
The BlackBerry Storm2 smartphone introduces a new SurePress™ technology based on an electronic system that provides the user with tactile feedback when the touch-screen is pressed. The new system responds equally to gentle pressure applied anywhere on the surface of the screen and makes clicking the display practically effortless. Typing on the smartphone’s virtual keyboards is easier, more comfortable and more accurate. The new SurePress technology also allows the user to type a letter with one thumb even while their other thumb may still be touching or resting on another letter, enabling faster typing and multi-key actions such as Shift or Alt -key combinations.
- Smooth design and premium finish with sloped edges, chrome accents, glass lens and stainless steel backplate
- Large (3.25”), dazzling, high resolution 360 x 480 display at 184 ppi
- Capacitive touch-screen with integrated functions (Send, End, Menu, Escape) and new SurePress technology that makes clicking the display practically effortless
- Global connectivity support: UMTS/HSPA (2100Mhz), quad-band EDGE/GPRS/GSM and Wi-Fi® (802.11 b/g) networks
- 3.2 MP camera with variable zoom, autofocus, flash and video recording
- 256 MB of Flash memory
- 2 GB of onboard memory storage and a microSD/SDHD memory card slot that supports up to 16 GB cards today and is expected to support 32 GB cards when available
- Premium and easy-to-access phone features, background noise suppression technology, loud distortion-free speakerphone and face detection (proximity sensor) that prevents accidental clicks and blanks the screen while the user is on the phone
- Media player for videos, pictures and music, plus BlackBerry® Desktop Manager for both PCs and Macs, and BlackBerry® Media Sync for easily syncing iTunes® and Windows Media® Player music with the smartphone*
- Vodafone’s music client pre-installed, giving access to an extensive catalogue of artists
- •A 3.5 mm stereo headset jack and dedicated volume controls
- Bluetooth® (2.1) with support for Secure Simple Pairing, hands-free headsets, stereo headsets, car kits and other Bluetooth peripherals
- Built-in GPS for maps and other location-based applications, as well as photo geotagging
- Access to BlackBerry App World™, featuring a broad and growing catalog of mobile applications developed specifically for BlackBerry smartphones. Categories include games, entertainment, IM and social networking, news, weather, productivity and more. Applications developed for the original BlackBerry Storm are fully compatible with the BlackBerry Storm2
- BlackBerry® Internet Service and BlackBerry® Enterprise Server support
- Removable, rechargeable 1400 mAhr battery that provides approximately 6 hours of talk time on 3G networks and 280 hours of standby time
BlackBerry OS 5
- More responsive experience and includes usability and visual enhancements such as inertial scrolling, spin boxes that make it easier to set dates and times, gradient shading on buttons and more use of animation
- Typing accuracy and selection have been significantly refined
- Customers running BlackBerry® Enterprise Server 5 will gain the ability to:
- Set follow-up Flags on the handset like they can in Microsoft® Office Outlook®
- Manage Microsoft Exchange email folders (Add, Rename, Move, Delete) on the handset
- Access remote files shares (Windows Shares); Save, View, Edit, and Email documents from remote file shares
- Forward appointments and view calendar attachments on the handset
- Benefit from wireless sync improvements for Contacts, including sync for multiple contact folders, personal Distribution Lists and contacts in Public/Shared folders
* Certain music files may not be supported, including files that contain digital rights management technologies.
Pricing will be announced by the individual in-country operating companies. As an indication, Vodafone UK will be offering the BlackBerry Storm2 free from £35 per month on a 24-month contract that includes 600 minutes talk-time, unlimited BlackBerry Internet Service, unlimited text messaging, as well as unlimited access to VMI (Vodafone Mobile Internet) and broadband.
For more information please visit www.blackberry.com/storm
RIM also has a comparaison page between the Original Storm and Storm 2 (according to them the Storm didn’t have a color screen! amazing :p).
Source: Vodafone here & here via Engadget
The New York Times is featuring a article today about RIM’s future strategy. Several topics are disccused, among them is the release of the new BlackBerry Storm 2 touchscreen device:
This week, Verizon and R.I.M. are trying again with a Storm do-over, the Storm 2. Among its many improvements, the new phone gives the user the sensation of pushing a physical button when pressing a number on the glass touch screen.
Word is that the announceement can come as soon as today. So stay tuned for more.
Source: NY Times
Salomondrin just posted a 10minutes long hands-on video of BlackBerry‘s soon to be announced (and launched on Verizon) touchscreen device, the Storm 2. He notes that the device he currently has in hand is probably the latest hardware revision (same for the firmware) and that all major bugs he encountered before seem to be fixed now. Can’t wait to see how the piezoelectic screen compares to a capcitive panel.
Here’s what looks like the best BlackBerry Storm 2 video so far. The highlight of the video is the how the new screen technology differs from the one on the previous Storm. this time RIM used piezoelectric tech which looks really amazing. RIM’s seems to be really involved in advancing touchscreen technology lately as seen with this patent application. The video also confirms that WiFi is on board this time. The Storm 2 should be headed to Verizon this fall.
Now only Windows Mobile phones are left with sucky resistive touch panels. This should change this fall with HTC’s upcoming Leo and Firestone capacitive smartphones. HTC has also filed a patent for a magnetic stylus compatible with capacitive touch panels.