| | 08-02-2010, 05:03 PM Thread Author #1
CBW 9100 fired up on TMO, comments and pics
Took a week from the time I ordered it to receive, as mentioned before I used a UPS store to forward it to me. Cute little box, same dumb ill designed ear buds as previous models – is it really that hard or expensive to slip in a decent bud made in china? I used unlockusa.com to get the device working - $ 2 & the code was returned in <1 min. unlock worked on first attempt – put it in multitap and follow the instructions.
Random comments – made in mexico, os 18.104.22.1688 – os seems very stable. To my eyes the unit is very slick looking, a mini 9700. Build quality seems solid and fit and finish is top notch. Already notice a dust spec under the screen so I am sure this will suck in the future. Resolution on the screen is excellent, much easier to read all text and colors really pop not that it matters much. The 9100 seems smaller in the hand than the 8120 because the edges are rolled/tapered but the unit is actually a tad longer than the 8120. Will all due respect to current owners the 8120 seems like a total POS compared to the 9100.
There is a speaker port in the shape of a slice about ½ inch long on the bottom of the unit, so the 9100 can lay on a bedside table for example and be used to play music. Volume is quite loud and clear when playing Pink Floyd, Zep, U2, Underworld, Deadmau5, etc – more electronic stuff. The only traces of CBW wireless are CB in blue on white @ startup and 2 wifi entries that cannot be deleted – yet! Other than that the case has no logo and it’s a very sharp non-descript looking device. When on wifi there is no UMA shown, only the wifi symbol and t-mobile add a ‘-‘ & the wap you are on. Those who liked the ‘L’ theme will not find joy in the 5 fixed icons on the bottom although the screen background of the Disney Hall (I think that is what it is) is pretty sharp looking. I need to get to more apps so I choose a very nice theme called ‘simple black’ it put (3) fixed icons/folders on the left and 10 scrolling ones on the bottom on a black background – I think it is very cool looking and works great. You cannot just blast across the L as before, you prob would want to put you more used icons on the bottom – you will see what I mean if you choose this but it’s a great asset to the device. Also if you move over the calendar it generates a micro list of appts, very very cool, ditto for email, shows who sent any unread msgs. I love this theme!
If you need more protection this is a great case Case-Mate BlackBerry Pearl 9100 Barely There Cases (Case-Mate BB9100BT), BlackBerry Pearl 9100 Cases, Holsters, Skins, and Accessories by Case-mate myself I am using what I have always used BlackBerry Pearl 3G Leather Swivel Holster - Black Original (OEM) HDW-29557-001 nice place to buy stuff btw.
What I like most about the 9100 is the device performance and 3G. doing anything on the device is instant, loading google apps is instantaneous. Bringing up a map or scrolling within a map is instant as its filling in data via 3g (if you have 3g that is) as you type something in google its finding options in real time – no delay. Google maps and voice are a dream. 3g if you have never used it is a total game changer – as long as you are on 3g you can talk and get email simultaneously. Ditto for tether, you can talk and surf on your laptop @ the same time. The device is a dream in this regard. The kb has a very good feel and the trackpad also works great. The 5.0 os is very enhanced compared to what we have been used to – there are a ton of really nice features. Two that I like is that profiles are listed on the top left of the screen and manage connections is on the right, so if you want to drop down to silent for a movie or turn off BT to save on the battery is only takes a second – very nice. You can link tones with contacts to differentiate between say sms from your girlfriend or wife, lol. All the tones have more detailed options, granularity in volume settings for tones, etc.
Battery life seems to be very good; I turn off BT when I am not in my car and I easily got 48hr + on the device and this was with heavy play, music, net use, etc. from zero to a full charge took 40 min in my car today. 2 days in not an issue and 3 is possible depending on use for sure. The 35,000 word dictionary has been enhanced, there are more words and the algorithm to sort and find words has been improved. If you use google and bolt it will switch to multitap and back for you, sort of nice. I don’t get opera, I think the new version is a total f’ing joke iface wise - if you want to close the app its tedious going to the far right for the close applet and then it asks if you want to close it – wtf? Just plain lame and dumb, in one version change they lost me and everyone else I know and bolt just stepped right in, losers.
All the graphics and menus are super slick compared to 4.5x. the media area is much enhanced, scrolling through pics or doing a slideshow is great and sending an 1120x840 pic only takes seconds but the best part is no hourglass, you can keep working on other stuff. @ home I am on a dlink dir 655 N router and sending pics is instant on that – N is flipping amazing. The 3.2 camera just blows the 8120 away, very good snaps outside and in.
The phone is really a great upgrade if you like this sort of format device – yes, compared to other offerings its dated but if you think about having just a phone will excellent voice quality and battery life and having all your outlook on the device its actually quite remarkable. There is not an android or iphone alive that can sync with outlook like a berry, period. I used a bes server and if I save an appt in outlook it shows up immediately in my calendar on the device – I would never change to something else unless it came close to this integration with outlook/exchange.
I kept the my same profile when I did the enterprise activation but my profile settings did not come across, prob due to the os change from the 8120. Tether works like a snap as before, via DTM the speed is ~115kbps – I know the tether app will yield 3x the speed but this is more than enough for remote work via remote desktop/citrix, etc.
I think this os version is nicely matched to the device, I don’t care what RIM comes out with I will not be upgrading – its smoking fast and yields great battery life, case closed imo.
Now the bad news – they have totally eliminated how I use the media player when I ride my road bike. On the 8120 it was pretty simple – I hit a play list, threw the device in my jersey an off I went. If I was in a pace line or group ride and someone started to chat me up I would just remove my ear bud and mute the device and keep my song paused. If I wanted more volume I would just adjust it through the baggie I use to protect the device, nice and simple.
With the 9100 they have the more common media functions on the top of the device so if you want to pause the device you will hit forward or reverse no matter how good an aim or touch you have. The volume controls are under the hard side shell so adjusting it is a pita, it cannot be done. I could live with the volume if I could lock out or adjust what controls work via the iface but it does not appear you can so I am left with going to best buy to get a new set of ear buds so I can control the volume and mute functions – looks like the skullcandy 50-50 will do this in addition to many others.
The other change is no more cradle option – for people that are used to this feature you will know what I mean and it would have taken nothing to put the charging pins on the bottom of the device. RIM is stupid for leaving this basic feature off, the name of the game is don’t remove things that people love and are used to.
I hate not having a warranty to fall back buying via CBW on but I don’t see any other options for me @ the moment, I am totally done with my 8120 – like many of you I depend on the device for business. and the 8120 just sucks speed wise. Maybe options will change in the future with win7 devices or new model droids. I am a 6’ guy with xl hands and I never make a mistake typing on this sucker, I am baffled beyond belief of how anyone could use a 9700 or touch screen but I think the new 3g curve could be a really hot # as the kb is much easier to type on for me @ least and its has a snappy little cpu. Anyhow, I think this will hold me for a while – I am not going back to the 8120, that is for sure.
Sorry for the spelling/grammar/pic quality, just wanted to get something out there.