Welcome the BlackBerry Curve 3G 9300

Research In Motion’s (RIM) new BlackBerry Curve 3G (or 9300) has just come out on a number of carriers globally. Basically a refresh of existing Curve series devices, the Curve 3G does bring a few features that users will find necessary but does not drastically update the hardware. Here is a quick look at the specs:

  • OS: BlackBerry OS 5 (upgradeable to OS 6 soonish)
  • Dimensions: (HxWxD) 4.29×2.36×0.5 inches
  • Weight: 104 grams
  • Display: 320×240 resolution
  • Camera: 2 megapixel without flash
  • Video Camera: 320×240 resolution
  • Memory: 256MB flash, 256MB storage
  • CPU: 624 mhz
  • Storage: microSD with included 2GB card
  • GPS: A-GPS ready
  • Wi-Fi: b/g/n
  • Bluetooth: version 2.1 with stereo support
  • Network: 3G support of course!

The specs are not the most impressive, but the Curve series has never been meant to play with the big boys in the Bold series. And lets be honest here. Unless you regularly use your smartphone more for apps, pictures and internet than you do for just making phone calls, email or messaging, then you really don’t need anything else. It is excellent that smartphones keep pushing the speed/memory/camera boundaries, but none of those things have anything do with being a phone.

What I am most worried about however, is when the new Curve is going to get its OS 6 update. Carriers are the ones in charge of pushing the new OS out to users, so unless you are willing to load another carrier’s update onto your BlackBerry, you will be completely dependent on your carrier’s time table for this. I really wish RIM had decided to ship the new Curve with OS 6.

One nice thing about the Curge 3G though, is that its keyboard is an improvement over previous Curve models. Basically, it feels like the keyboard off of the Bold 9700, which is sure to be a blessing to anyone looking to pick one of these up. RIM might be taking some heat for being so dependent on the same parts for nearly every BlackBerry model, but hey, why mess with a formula that works?

Overall, I can comfortably recommend the Curve 3G as a smartphone to get if you are not impressed by processor speed numbers, are not looking to shoot a movie on it, or just want a reliable device that works well with basic tasks. It will handle your phone, email, contacts, scheduling and messaging duties quite well. If what you really want is a flagship smartphone, then you probably should look elsewhere. Then again, the Curve series has never been about being the best. It is about giving customers a solid smartphone at a reasonable price.

Let me know if you are getting one of these and if you like it. Otherwise, tell me if you are looking for something a little more aggressive.

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