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Handhelds Toys Hardware

RIM Color BlackBerry 7230 Review 119

Posted by michael
from the stuff-to-lose dept.
securitas submits this painfully well-linked piece: "eWEEK reviews the RIM BlackBerry 7230 color handheld, Research In Motion's latest combination wireless e-mail/phone/PDA, and the first BlackBerry to feature a full-color display. The tri-band GSM/GPRS J2ME device features a 240-by-160-pixel, 65,000-color display, 16 MB flash +2 MB SRAM, an Intel 386 32-bit chip, SMS, an HTML browser (missing from the preceding BlackBerry 5810), a claimed 4 hours talk/10 days standby removable/rechargeable lithium-ion battery, POP3/IMAP/Exchange/Notes wireless e-mail for up to 10 accounts with file attachment management, security via Triple DES encryption, USB sync/recharging and the usual organizer functions. RIM squeezes it all into a 4.8 oz/136g, 4.4x2.9x0.8 inch/11.3x7.4x2.0 cm package (tech specs at RIM). The BlackBerry 7230 is exclusive to T-Mobile USA until 2004 and costs about $400. With this release, RIM is moving the BlackBerry into the prosumer/consumer market to expand its customer base beyond enterprise users. The release comes amid speculation of BlackBerry doom following RIM's recent patent ruling loss and ahead of the highly anticipated Handspring Treo 600, its direct competition (which includes the MS Pocket PC Phone Edition Smartphone and the Palm Tungsten W). More at Wired News, E-Commerce Times, InfoWorld and Forbes/Reuters."
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RIM Color BlackBerry 7230 Review

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  • Impressive specs, but can it run Linux? ;-)
  • by cnb (146606)
    that's a whole lot of links in a single post

    auto linker working over time?
  • The intro is too long and is painful to read, almost like a troll article. Couldn't you have split it into a few lines of intro and a main text section?
  • Plaintext tota! (Score:2, Informative)

    Even the printer freindly version is bloated. Here is the cleaned up tota!

    August 16, 2003
    RIM Ships Color BlackBerry

    By Jason Brooks

    The BlackBerry 7230, the latest in Research In Motion LTD.'s line of BlackBerry wireless messaging devices, became available in the United States this week, complete with a tri-band GPRS radio and an attractive new color display.

    Like the BlackBerry 5810, which eWEEK Labs reviewed last year (see review), the 7230 maintains the mobile messaging competency on which RIM's BlackB
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 16, 2003 @06:05PM (#6714124)
    Except one. How many patents can this thing infringe upon simultaneously?
  • by Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) on Saturday August 16, 2003 @06:06PM (#6714129)
    looks especially designed to not be readable on a Blackberry pager. Nice usability test though ...
  • a company spokesman. No real average human being would have that many links of a product except a company man.
    • Don't be so paranoid (Score:5, Informative)

      by securitas (411694) on Saturday August 16, 2003 @08:00PM (#6714523) Homepage Journal


      a company spokesman. No real average human being would have that many links of a product except a company man.

      Survey says.... BZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZT!

      Sorry, but I have never had anything to do with RIM beyond meeting some of their staff at trade shows.

      By your logic I work for Handspring [slashdot.org] and Sony [slashdot.org] too. If you look at my previous posts I always try to include a variety of sources.

      I'm considering getting an all-in-one phone/PDA-type device and I was looking at the relative merits of a BlackBerry vs. some of the other more phone-like devices. Since I'd already done the work trying to find out about it, I thought it might make a useful Slashdot post.

      • Well in that case, thanks for the info. :)
      • So for all of us who are in the same market. . . what's your recommendation? :) I was waiting for the Treo 600 but have some reservations about the small screen, and every day I try to do some homework I come accross another new device I hadn't heard of fore

        • I can't fairly make any recommendation at this point. It's one thing to look at the specs of a particular device. It's entirely another matter to do a hands-on test. I haven't used either the BlackBerry 7230 or the Treo 600 so, until I do, no recommendations.

          I suggest that you decide what features you absolutely need and which ones are just nice-to-have/not essential. Then rank them from most important features to least important. After you have done that, THEN look at which devices best match your list.
  • Blackberry Jam (Score:4, Informative)

    by cybermace5 (446439) <g.ryan@macetech.com> on Saturday August 16, 2003 @06:10PM (#6714151) Homepage Journal
    These things keep getting more and more appealing. Someday when I have money I'll have to pick one up.

    During the power outage, our execs in New York and Toronto kept in contact by using their Blackberries. Might be the first time they ever REALLY used them, but hey!
    • I think I'd rather have a HipTop SideKick myself... It seems a bit more useful, while losing none of the Blackberry functionality. Thord party apps aren't plentiful on the HipTop, but there are more than with the Blackberry. And it's smaller. and cheaper. and coooooler. Same screen res. ...and unlike with the Blackberry, HTML browsing is supported and encouraged. Heck, Danger (the maker of the HipTop) advocates HTML in the hope that WAP would juat finally doe.
  • ads.slashdot.org (Score:1, Insightful)

    by ciroknight (601098)
    is needed. besides, unless it runs linux, who of us cares? :-P
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 16, 2003 @06:12PM (#6714158)
    As part of my job I develop three applications for the Blackberry. All of them involve network access. The experience has been absolutely infuriating. Firstly you must use RIM's JDE which is terrible and slow. Secondly the operating system is a dog. In the 3.3 version the handheld unit would sometimes reboot, and this can take as long as 8 minutes in my experience. In the 3.6 version the network stack crashes itself by spawning too many threads, but then doesn't fix itself so the user is left to figure out for himself that he needs to reboot it with a paper clip (more often the user will be likely to just smash the damn thing and bring it to IT folks in pieces.) In the simulator, the networking stack can throw uncaught exceptions. The Blackberry Enterprise Server, which is needed to push data to the handheld, crashes regularly.

    I do dearly miss the previous generation of Blackberry with Mobitex network access. Not only does Mobitex have vastly better coverage that even works in airplanes, but that version of the handheld had a proper C API and berry-to-berry networking capabilities.

    • >I do dearly miss the previous generation of Blackberry with Mobitex network access.

      As an unfortunate and early adopter of a RIM 950 pager (yes, the pager model) it regularly crashed at least once a week with some sort of system reset message (it's been years since I've used it, I think it said "system error 7" or something). Required a reset, and, as usual, all my stuff was lost (except, amazingly, my emails).

      Apart from the software being so bad, the service being so expensive, and the unit being hor
      • If RIM software is so bad, why do they seem to be so popular?

        Our executives, half of which can hardly send email on their computer, have been wetting their pants and frothing at the mouth over the idea of getting these, even when it means a $6-8k investment in a year where $250 needs written approval.

        My feeling is that when they're out playing golf or drinking at the clubhouse, their executive pals and status rivals have them so they need them too.

        I used one for a couple of weeks recently (a T-Mobile one
        • >If RIM software is so bad, why do they seem to be so popular?

          We can ask the same question about windows and McDonalds... The answer isn't quality. ;-)

          >Our executives, half of which can hardly send email on their computer, have been wetting their pants and frothing at the mouth over the idea of getting these, even when it means a $6-8k investment in a year where $250 needs written approval.

          It certainly isn't hard to use, and if the software worked without glitches, I'd have been much happier with
    • I actually do tech support for this company, and to be honest, if you are running in a stable environment (read...competent IT) then problems are extremely rare. Most of the problems I see are usually the result of poor IT practices, no QA and generally an uneducated admin. I'll be the first to say that there are issues, but RIM does generally resolve them really quick.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 16, 2003 @06:13PM (#6714164)
    RIM took the same device and gave it two product names, the 7210 and the 7230. Each are precisely the same and the 7230 is likely never to be carried by another company anyway (as RIM will make them specific for the carrier's needs then slap different number variation on it to distinguish the difference). I'd recommend anyone getting one to get the 7210 on AT&T Wireless as you won't have to deal with the crappy coverage that has become synonymous with the T-Mobile name. I got mine this last week, am not using the phone function, and still am at 65% battery left! Related reading: http://news.com.com/2100-1041-5063352.html [com.com]
  • Lawsuits in motion releases a 386DX handheld.

    Why am I not jumping up and down in the streets for joy?

    Oh, right, it's a 386 and it's $400. I forgot for half a second.
  • by DF5JT (589002)
    "The tri-band GSM/GPRS J2ME device features
    [...] an Intel 386 32-bit chip, [...]"

    That gives "backporting" a whole new meaning.
  • But is it legal? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ybmug (237378)
    Didn't they just get in quite a bit of legal trouble for "borrowing" somebody else's technology? Seems like a pretty bold move to introduce new products at a time like this.
  • slashdotted (Score:3, Funny)

    by kovarg (591527) on Saturday August 16, 2003 @06:39PM (#6714237) Homepage
    well damn... how are we to know which server we should try and slashdot with so many links?
  • by SuperBanana (662181) on Saturday August 16, 2003 @06:41PM (#6714244)

    securitas submits this painfully well-linked piece:

    Try painfully long. It was almost 3/4 of a page long, and I'm running at 1280x1024.

    Are we going to see adver..cough, sorry, stories, every time Sony comes out with a new Clie too? Oops, sorry, I forget, we already get that :-)

  • I've never seen the market for these kinds of appliances. They're to clunky to be useful as a phone and to small to be a real laptop.
    And if that wasn't enough, the software is completely proprietary ("end-to-end proprietary", in marketing-speak).

    If you can't stay away some hours from your email, you'd better never leave the office.

    Rainer

    • by fliplap (113705) on Saturday August 16, 2003 @07:02PM (#6714296) Homepage Journal
      If you can't stay away some hours from your email, you'd better never leave the office.

      I sometimes wonder if comments like this are trolls, or just people that don't know what they're talking about. I mean, I guess I can see your point if you're the kind of person that likes to sit at the office hunched over a desk staring into the monitor checking every box repeatedly, just to make sure its still up. Personally I'd much rather go sit in the park, or at home, and let Big Brother [bb4.com] email my phone if something dies.
      • hunched over a desk staring into the monitor checking every box repeatedly, just to make sure its still up

        Nagios has a status-overview page for that.

        Personally I'd much rather go sit in the park, or at home, and let Big Brother email my phone if something dies

        Sending out SMS from computers to mobile phones (GSM) has been possible for years, at least here in Germany.
        OK - it makes sense for you and you've found a specific use for it. But I doubt that people like you are the intended mass-market for this

        • OK - it makes sense for you and you've found a specific use for it. But I doubt that people like you are the intended mass-market for this product...

          Um. Actually, anyone that is on call or depends on the timely delivery of exact data is the intended market. For example, almost anyone in the IT industry. Think of the situations:

          A) No blackberry. Frantic call from management. "The website is broken!"
          "Ok, what doesn't work about it"
          "I don't know, but we're getting a lot of calls about it and you need to get
    • I've never seen the market for these kinds of appliances

      I do, its small, but there. Having a internet enabled PDA is very usefully in IT.

      They're to clunky to be useful as a phone

      Bluetooth, it sits in your pocket, you speak via a head set.

      and to small to be a real laptop

      but just a great size for a PDA, that is check email, beep when you got a docs appontment, read the PDF specs for your new server on train, play DOOM duing a crappy user met, check a server at the pub via VNC...

      software is compl
  • by Qbertino (265505) on Saturday August 16, 2003 @06:44PM (#6714253)
    I actually considered buying this one (I'm a 100% T-Customer in terms of conectivity) but after reading the review I'll pass.
    It's OK if HTML doesn't show as flashy as on IE 6 with every plugin you can get on the web. But crashes? Slowpoking on certain code? Not very reashuring.
    Can I update the Browser or install my own? Not easy anyway.
    And the weedyness of the account (with extra costs) and it's unconfigurability and unconectability don't add to my trust in this thing.
    Don't get me wrong, 400$ for a device that's as featureladen as this is a good deal. Especially when it manages to integrate a PDA with a Mobile pretty well and has a batterytime that is usefull. But with all this proprietary stuff and them glitches in the service account I'll wait another while.
    This seems a bit like bananaware to me.
  • by Quasar1999 (520073) on Saturday August 16, 2003 @06:48PM (#6714261) Journal
    Holy shit! Being a former employee of RIM, while I was there, they suggested that we give honest good word of mouth for the blackberry (back when the 950 came out), but this is seriously overkill... I'm truely curious if this guy works for Rim, or at the very least has some massive amount of money in their stock and is trying to inflate the value so he can recoup his loses after the negative patent ruling...

    But what really bakes my noodle, is why the hell this made it to the front page... Are there any slashdot editors left? Or is story acceptance simply based on the number of links in the text?
  • "Prosumer"? "Prosumer"?? "Prosumer"???
  • by aardwolf204 (630780) on Saturday August 16, 2003 @07:10PM (#6714334)
    If [cmbi.kun.nl] I [slashdot.org] See [slashdot.org] Another [another.com] Hyperlink [webopedia.com] I [slashdot.org] Might [archangelcastle.com] Explode [php.net]
    • The biggest usability problem here on slashdot has to be figuring which link takes you to the actual story. Its not so bad when using a real browser that shows you the full URL in the tray, but its especially annoying when using a mobile browser.

      The editors really need to be clear about which is the main link, use alt tags, bold the main link, etc. Right now this is fairly ridiculous.
  • Yet another device that looks cool until you find out it has no built in speaker - they expect you to plug in a headset cable each time you want to make/receive a call.

    No one I know could use a mobile phone that way - who's buying these things?

    • RIM devices are pretty much exclusively used by bidness folks for email. Since I do a good job of living far away from the corporate world, I've not known all that many people who use RIM devices, but I've known a couple, and they were all either exec/manegerial type or sys admins who had a lot of script set up to alert them of all sorts of things via email. These days, a lot of the people I've known who had a Blackberry a few years ago now have a Hiptop- the sae functionality and a little more.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Now there's an excuse to go and fire your marketing department...
  • Ad? I think not. (Score:5, Informative)

    by The Revolutionary (694752) on Saturday August 16, 2003 @07:28PM (#6714404) Homepage Journal
    Of the submitter's previously accepted stories, this one [slashdot.org] and this one [slashdot.org] mention BlackBerry.

    While both do mention BlackBerry, both also mention competing products in a good light.

    Submitter's other stories which have been accepted, stories on completely unrelated topics, are equally abundantly linked.

    Judging by the submitter's past comments' moderation, the submitter does not need more karma.

    I suspect what we have here is not an ad, but rather a story submitted by a user who has some exceptional interest in following handheld phone/data technologies.
  • As a student job, a work in call center for pagers CS and cellphone activation center. We have to keep ourselves from clicking on disconnect when we receive calls from RIMs callers. These are a bitch to support and to activate.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    1) Every BlackBerry with the model numbers in the 62xx, 65xx, 67xx, and 72xx ranges can be used like a regular cell-phone, by holding it to your ear. No headset required.

    2) All the four digit model number BlackBerries (GSM/GPRS, CDMA/1xRTT and iDEN) use ARM processors. Only the old Mobitex and DataTAC devices used the 386 processors.
  • I like mine. (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward
    At one time, I was using the Motorola C230 mobile... what a piece of trash, really.

    Then I moved onto the Blackberry6210 - It was good, no complaints - the monochrome was a bit of a disappointment but the backlight was nice and bright, bright enough that I could use it as a flashlight to find the keyhole on the cardoor if need be.
    Now, I'm currently using a colourised version of the 6210 (which more than likely won't be released now because they seemed to be opting to release the 7230 instead). I've got a 7
  • ...I think we have a winner for the "Most Links in a Slashdot Post Ever" award.
  • What exactly can I do on it that I can't do on my Danger HipTop (aka T-Mobile SideKick)?

    That's what I thought.
    • by RedX (71326)
      What exactly can I do on it that I can't do on my Danger HipTop (aka T-Mobile SideKick)?

      Sync with Outlook? Keep only a single device for a year rather than going through 4 Hiptops that were never dropped but just mysteriously stopped receiving a signal?

      Don't get me wrong, I really do like the Hiptop and have used one since the day they were released, but those are my 2 biggest complaints. As soon as there is a comparable device to the Hiptop, I'll be switching. I don't know if this Blackberry is com

  • That should be "a HTML browser", not "an HTML browser." The "H" of "HTML" is pronounced, therefore you use an "a". "An" is only used with silent H's where the vowel is pronounced instead of "h" i.e. "a horse", "a hospital", "an honour", "an hor's doeuvre".

    My pet hate is news readers who say "an horrific accident" - it's "a horrific accident" dammit! (The exception would be if it occurred in East London, in which case it might be "an 'orrific accident"...)
    • I don't know about you, but when I pronounce the letter 'H', I pronounce it with the extended "A" vowel sound along with 'ch' as an ending. So it ends up sounding like "A-ch"

      ergo, an HTML browser sounds proper to my ears.
    • 'H', as a letter, is pronounced Aitch, so its always preceded by "an".
  • Didn't the product namers learn anything from Ford's Merkur XR4Ti? RIM BlackBerry 7230? I'm not buying until they get some memorable names that reflect the different models' typical use. My sugguestions:

    RIM BlackBerry 875: Rim Fun
    RIM BlackBerry 5810: Rim Home
    RIM BlackBerry 7230: Rim Job

    _______________________
    Sigs are insignificant.
  • If you get an iPAQ (or any PDA) with tMobile's unlimited internet is a much better deal. Looking at all the plans for BlackBerries, the $30/month (or $20/month if you allready have a tmobile cell) for tMobile is really cheap. You could also go with the sidekick for $100 less.
  • by dodell (83471)
    All you silly US people psyched out by your lame phones. :-D
  • michael call it "well-linked," I call it "Link Pollution." I did not read the article, as I have better things to to than figure out which link(s) to visit. Slashdot is very frequently guilty of this practice.

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