RIM Blackberry Torch 9800 vs. RIM Blackberry Bold 9700 – Review

by Jerry D on August 3, 2010

How does the new Blackberry Torch 9800 compare against the popular 9700 Bold model? Putting the two phones side-by-side, it’s clear that the Torch is an improvement. But is it enough of an improvement to trouble the smartphone elite?

blackberry torch vs bold RIM Blackberry Torch 9800 vs. RIM Blackberry Bold 9700   Review


Let’s start with wireless connectivity. The Blackberry Torch 9800 includes 3G, a triple play of 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi plus Bluetooth 2.1 with A2DP. The Blackberry Bold 9700, meanwhile, boasts the same 3G networking, 802.11b/g Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 2.1 with A2DP. The 9800′s enhanced Wi-Fi just steals the round. (1-0)

Size & Weight:

The spec sheet reveals that the Blackberry Torch 9800 is a shade fatter than the Blackberry Bold 9700 with dimensions of 14.6mm versus 14.0mm. The Torch is also slightly broader, measuring 62.0mm to the Blackberry Bold 9700′s 60.0mm. As for weightiness, the 9800 is considerably heavier than its older sibling, tipping the scales at a hefty 161g, compared to the Blackberry Bold 9700′s 122g. (1-1)



The Blackberry Torch 9800 is equipped with a 5.0 Megapixel camera with auto-focus, image stabilization, an LED flash, 2x digital zoom and VGA video capture. The ageing Blackberry Bold 9700 comes off worse. Despite boasting autofocus, an LED flash, image stabilization and VGA video recording, its 3.15 Megapixel camera isn’t up to the standards of the Blackberry Torch 9800. (2-1)


The Torch features a 3.2-inch touch-sensitive LCD display with a resolution of 360 x 480 pixels. There’s also a fantastic, backlit QWERTY keyboard for data entry that slides out from the bottom of the device. In comparison, the Blackberry Bold 9700′s LCD is just 2.44 inches wide, with a more traditional Blackberry QWERTY keyboard below it. The 480 by 360 screen resolution matches the Blackberry Torch 9800. (3-1)


As far as performance is concerned, the Blackberry Torch 9800′s core uses the same chugging 624MHz Marvell chip as the Blackberry Bold. The big difference is the Blackberry OS 6.0 that comes installed on the 9800, which features a new customisable homescreen, integrated social and RSS feeds, enhanced web browsing and universal search. (4-1)

Downloadable apps:


While the Blackberry Bold 9700 only boasts 2GB of storage, the 9800 comes with a better 8GB capacity, split between 4GB of internal memory and a 4GB memory card. The Torch also has a microSD interface, which can extend the overall capacity to 36GB. The microSD expansion slot on the Bold bumps up the capacity to a maximum of only 16GB. (5-1)

Battery life:

Fully juiced, the new Blackberry boasts 5.8 hours of talktime according to RIM, while the Blackberry Bold 9700 is rated at 6.0 hours. Standby time is rated at 336 hours and 408 hours respectively. Points go to the Blackberry Bold 9700 this time. (5-2)



The Blackberry Torch 9800 also includes GPS/A-GPS, geo-tagging and Blackberry Maps. The Blackberry Bold 9700 features GPS/A-GPS and BlackBerry maps (5-2)

The Blackberry Torch 9800 wins!

Torch 9800 RIM Blackberry Torch 9800 vs. RIM Blackberry Bold 9700   ReviewIt’s hardly a shocker. The Blackberry Torch 9800 calls time on the 9700 and emerges as the big winner of this fight (5-2). The new Blackberry OS 6.0 is certainly an improvement, as is the 5.0 Megapixel camera, bigger touchscreen display and 8GB of memory. Criticisms? Can the Marvell CPU cut it in an age of 1GHz processors? Probably not. While the 3.2-inch LCD can’t compete with top-end smartphones like the iPhone 4, Droid X and Samsung Galaxy S.

Do you agree with the result of this fight? Tell us below…

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