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printed November 1, 2014
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Review: BlackBerry Pearl Flip

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Is It Your Type? Body The Three S's  

Screen

The Flip's main screen is a QVGA display and it looks great. The high resolution makes for sharp images, text and icons. Most of the default menus are white text on a black background. Usually this means you'll have a hard time seeing the screen in full sunlight. Not so with the Flip. The screen is very easy to read, even in direct sunshine. Menus, icons and text show up nice and crisp. The exterior display is less visible in the sun, but easily seen when indoors.

Signal

The Flip was a signal hound. Most places I took it, it registered a full five bars of EDGE signal from T-Mobile. It didn't drop any calls in my time with it, and only dropped to three bars once. In areas that we know to have poor signal strength form T-Mobile, the Flip matched the best scores we've seen.

Sound

Call quality was not as good as I've experienced on other BlackBerries. The Flip's earpiece speaker, even set all the way up, was difficult to hear in a quiet room. It was almost impossible to hear callers in noisy environments. On top of that, there was a constant hiss (more so than normal) during calls. I did not notice any crackling or static, though. As for the ringer, it can be made sufficiently loud that you're not going to miss phone calls in your house. Out in the world, however, you just might. I missed several calls when walking through a noisy mall. It helps a lot if you turn on the vibrating alert with the ringer.

Battery

We've only had the Flip for 4 days. We haven't charged it yet. It had a full charge when we took it out of the box, and it has lasted through a weekend of tests. Tests have included calls, messages, browsing the Web, music playback, taking pictures and stuff like that. I expect to have to charge it at the end of the fourth day, however, as it is down to one bar.

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