RIM Blackberry Torch 9800 vs. Nokia N97 Mini vs. Palm Pre Plus – It’s war!

by Jerry D on September 9, 2010

The RIM Blackberry Torch 9800 has had a rough ride since it launched, losing out to many of the leading cellphones. It’s been criticised for a lack of grunt and so-so features, so it can’t compete against the top-end smartphones. But how does it fare against lower league opposition like the Nokia N97 Mini and the Palm Pre Plus?

torch vs n97 mini vs pre plus RIM Blackberry Torch 9800 vs. Nokia N97 Mini vs. Palm Pre Plus   Its war!

RIM Blackberry Torch 9800

Compared to the old Blackberry Bold 9700, the Torch includes some significant technology improvements. It debuts version 6.0 of RIM’s Blackberry OS, which now includes: a new customisable homescreen, integrated social and RSS feeds, enhanced web browsing and universal search.

It also includes an improved 3.2-inch LCD with a resolution of 360 x 480 pixels and a neat slide-out QWERTY keyboard. The 5.0 MP camera includes frills such as: auto-focus, image stabilization, LED flash, a 2x digital zoom and VGA video capture. The older Bold could only muster a 3.15MP lens.

Admittedly, the Torch 9800 is a little fat around the waist – a depth of 14.6mm isn’t thin enough to truly catch the eye, while a weight of 161g is certainly on the heavy side. It’s not the quickest of handsets either. Rather than push the boat out with a speedy CPU, RIM has used the same 624MHz Marvell processor that powered the Bold.

Nokia N97 Mini

This compact handset is an attempt to package the best bits of the bulky N97 into a much more attractive (and pocketable) package. Running the Symbian OS (Series 60), it also boasts a 3.2-inch LCD that has a slightly better resolution (360 x 640 pixels) than the Blackberry Torch.

In terms of its size, a depth of 14.2mm only gives it a 0.4mm edge over the 9800 above. But it’s nowhere near as chunky as the RIM handset, weighing a more modest 138g. And it also includes a slide-out QWERTY keyboard.

The best bit about N97 Mini? A brilliant 5.0 MP camera featuring Carl Zeiss optics, autofocus, a dual LED flash, video light, geo-tagging functionality and VGA video recording. The worst bit? A sluggish 434MHz processor that’s streets, avenues and boulevards behind the latest 1GHz chips.

Palm Pre Plus

The Palm Pre Plus has almost sunk from view in the mobile arena, outclassed by… well, outclassed by pretty much everybody. Which is a shame, because the Palm webOS certainly has the power and flexibility to compete against the Blackberry OS, Android, Apple’s iOS and Symbian.

Compared to the other two phones here, the 3.1-inch, 320 x 480 pixel LCD is the smallest screen. Although not by much. The Pre Plus also packs the lowest amount of memory – 16GB compares poorly to the 24GB maximum capacity of the N97 Mini and the 36GB of room that the Torch can be extended to.

While it’s a compact handset (weighing the same as the N97 Mini), it’s fatter than its opponents here with a depth of 16.9mm. A 600MHz processor gives it a decent (if unspectacular) turn of speed, while the 3.15 MP camera (with an LED flash, geo-tagging cleverness and VGA video capture) lags behind the other two phones.

The Blackberry Torch 9800 wins!

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