Review: BlackBerry 9330 Curve 3G
Disappointingly, RIM carried the 8530's display directly over to the Curve 3G. It measures 2.4 inches and offers a measely 240 x 320 pixels. As I've stated before in other BlackBerry reviews, this small screen size is becoming tiresome. Given all that modern smartphone applications can do, more real estate is vital. Beyond the small screen, 240 x 320 pixels just looks lousy. Icons, text and graphics all have noticeable pixelated edges to them. It's most evident when viewing photos or browsing the web. As for outdoor view-ability, it rates OK, but it's not as bright as the 9650 or 9800.
The Curve 3G performed excellently when it came to signal strength. It actually out-performed the 9650 most of the time, at least where the number of bars displayed is concerned. In terms of real-world dependability, it always connected calls, never dropped any, and I never missed any. It survived the NJ vault test just fine, and even survived the urban canyons of Manhattan with no trouble. Data sessions were almost always speedy, and text messages arrived with that regular reliability for which BlackBerrys are known.
Great signal strength didn't appear to translate into awesome phone powers for the Curve 3G. Phone calls sounded so-so. Some times calls were great, and other times, they were full of static and noise. Earpiece volume was excellent, however, as was the speakerphone. Both provide ample volume to conduct calls. The ringers can be set to ear-shattering volumes, and the vibrate alert is strong.
BlackBerrys are known for their excellent battery life and the Curve 3G does not disappoint. With extensive testing, I was able to get a full day's use with the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth radios on, and there was still plenty of charge left to get me through the next day. My guess is the average business user will be able to get through 2 days with no problem. Consumers who make fewer voice calls and leave Wi-Fi and Bluetooth off may easily reach three days of battery life.