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Review: BlackBerry Curve 9370 for Verizon

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The 9370's 2.4-inch display is downright puny when compared to most other smartphones on the market. The good news is that RIM has upped the resolution for the 9370 to 480 x 360 pixels. When packed into such a small area, the result is a display that looks sharp and crisp. When set to full brightness, it's enough to blind you. There's no need to set the brightness any higher than about 70%. Using it outdoors is hit or miss depending on what you're doing with it. The black drop-down menus with white text were nearly impossible to read, but the white menu screens were easy to read outside.


The Curve 9370 runs on Verizon's EVDO 3G network in the U.S. and will roam onto the GSM/EDGE networks of overseas network operators if taken abroad. In my tests around northern New Jersey, the 9370 performed on par with other devices on Verizon's network. The 9370 always remained connected to the network and was able to make voice calls even when it showed zero bars of coverage. Data sessions with zero bars was choppy at best. When under strong network conditions, the data sessions were relatively speedy.


True to BlackBerry form, voice calls sounded excellent through the 9370's earpiece. Set to maximum volume, I was easily able to hear the 9370 over some really loud music playing in my office as well as during the raucous cheers of a football game in my living room (go Giants!). Clarity was fine, and the voices on the other end sounded warm and present. I didn't notice any interference. The volume and quality of the speakerphone aren't as good as the earpiece. I was still able to hear the phone over the loud music, but only when it was set all the way up, and even then I needed to lean in a little bit. The quality had a bit of scratchiness over the speakerphone, but nothing too terrible. Ringtones and other alerts could be set to extremely loud volumes. The vibrate alert is strong enough for the Curve 9370 to give a decent back massage.

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In a word, outstanding. The device held a charge from Friday afternoon to Monday morning with no problem, despite that I was using it to check email regularly, as well as surf the web, make phone calls, and check my social networking feeds (over both 3G and Wi-Fi). Three days is excellent performance for a modern smartphone. If you're into energy conservation, a device such as the 9370 will help you pare down your electric bill.


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