Blackberry Torch 9800 vs. Apple iPhone 4 – Review

by Jerry D on August 6, 2010

To see just how far the Blackberry Torch lags behind top-of-the-range smartphones, you only have to compare it to the iPhone 4 or the Motorola Droid X. Sadly there are some serious flaws, which means that the Torch actually has more in common with mid-range handsets…


Things get off to a decent start. The connectivity options on the Blackberry Torch 9800 include 3G, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 2.1 with A2DP. Apple’s iPhone 4, meanwhile, dishes up 3G/HSDPA (7.2Mbps), the same Wi-Fi combo of 802.11b/g/n plus Bluetooth 2.1 with EDR. (1-1)

Size & Weight:

Compare the two handsets and the iPhone 4 is a bit taller than the Blackberry Torch 9800 with dimensions of 115.2mm versus 111.0mm. The Blackberry Torch 9800 is wider, measuring 62.0mm to the iPhone 4′s 58.6mm. Weighing 161g, the 9800 is 24g heavier than the iPhone 4, which weighs 137g. (1-2)



RIM has built a 5.0 Megapixel lens into the Blackberry Torch 9800, together with features such as auto-focus, image stabilization, an LED flash, 2x digital zoom and VGA video capture.

The iPhone 4 also comes equipped with a 5.0 MP camera along with tap to focus functionality, an LED flash, geo-tagging, VGA and HD video recording up to 30fps. Another camera located on the front is ideal for video calls. Or ‘FaceTime’ in Apple-speak. (1-3)


The Blackberry Torch 9800 improves upon the tiny display in the 9700 with a touch-sensitive LCD that’s 3.2 inches across. It has a quoted resolution of 360 x 480 pixels. RIM has also opted for a slide-out QWERTY keyboard, much like the one in the palm Pre.

The iPhone 4′s touch-sensitive LCD display is roomier at 3.5 inches. But it also smashes the resolution barrier with Retina technology that delivers a higher-than-high resolution of 640 by 960 pixels. (1-4)


As far as performance goes, the RIM Blackberry Torch 9800 is built around the same Marvell chip that powers the older 9700 ‘Bold’. It’s clocked at 624MHz. The iPhone 4 is far speedier and uses an Apple A4 1GHz processor.

RIM has made some significant improvements to version 6.0 of the Blackberry OS, which debuts on the Blackberry Torch 9800. But Apple’s iOS4 is still streets ahead in terms of flexibility, expandability and customisation. (1-6)

Downloadable apps:


In terms of storage capacity, the iPhone 4 features 32GB of internal storage, while the Blackberry Torch 9800 features 8GB. Plug a bigger memory card into the Blackberry Torch 9800′s microSD expansion slot and the maximum capacity rises to 36GB. Apple didn’t build an expansion slot into the iPhone 4, so 32GB is the maximum capacity. A rare point for the Torch. (2-6)

Battery life:

Juiced up to full capacity, RIM says that its phone can deliver 5.8 hours of talktime, while the iPhone 4 is rated at 7.0 hours. Meanwhile, standby time is quoted as 336 hours and 300 hours respectively The points belong to the Blackberry Torch 9800. (3-6)



Finally, the Torch also includes GPS/A-GPS, geo-tagging and Blackberry Maps. The iPhone 4 also features GPS/A-GPS, plus a digital compass and a 3-axis gyroscope (3-7)

The Apple iPhone 4 wins!

iphone4 2up front side Blackberry Torch 9800 vs. Apple iPhone 4   Review It’s a comprehensive win for the iPhone 4 (3-7) that puts the technology inside the Blackberry Torch into perspective. RIM’s newest model is hardly a cutting-edge smartphone. It lacks a top-end display, a powerful processor and a truly slim, lightweight design. The keyboard is nice and the build quality is good, but it’s at least a generation behind handsets like the iPhone 4.

Do you agree? Leave us a comment below…

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