As the new BlackBerry Bold 2, 9700, Onyx, or whatever you want to call it, goes on sale tomorrow in the U.K., glowing reviews are beginning to follow it – unlike this early preview last month that called it a “non-story” because it lacks the innovation that some of the year’s new smartphones show off.
Is it really the “finest BlackBerry to date”? That’s what at least one reviewer is saying. PC World says the 9700 takes the best of the Tour and the original Bold and puts them together in “a slim and refined package.” Then the review goes on to soften its praises just a bit, saying anyone who’s expecting major updates to the first Bold could end up being disappointed, but true fans will really go for “the handset’s subtle design tweaks and upgrades.”
The site appreciates the new device’s size and lighter weight, button placement and touchpad, among other features. Using the T-Mobile network was the only real downer for the reviewer, who called it “spotty at times.”
The gang at CrackBerry, which breaks down anything new that BlackBerry releases, agrees that “some will argue [the 9700] is the best BlackBerry yet.” Like the PC World review, CrackBerry touts the size – calling it “easy to handle … [without] the ‘bulk’ of the [original] Bold” – and trackpad navigation, and adds that the keyboard and operating system are top-notch.
But despite these praises, will the 9700 and the new Storm 2 – which went on sale last week in the U.S. – be overshadowed by Friday’s release of the Motorola Droid? Most of the buzz in the past week has surrounded this phone that will debut on the Verizon network. The new version of the Bold is expected to be available in the U.S. sometime before Thanksgiving.