RIM Blackberry Bold 9790
BlackBerry OS7, 2.5in 480x360 display
With the RIM BlackBerry Bold 9900, RIM tried to combine the best of both worlds: a top-notch keyboard and a touchscreen interface. With the Bold 9790 RIM has taken the same idea, but in a smaller, slimmer body that's arguably easier to carry around with you.
In addition to the keyboard and touchscreen, there's an optical trackpad button. It's a little sensitive at first, but once you get used to it, it's a great way to scroll through a large list of emails and select menu options.
One of the big changes from the Bold 9900 is that the 9790 has a slightly slower single-core processor: 1GHz versus 1.2GHz. It's fine for most uses of the OS, but we found that pressing and holding the menu button to bring up BlackBerry 7's task switching could bring the phone to halt. This was particularly true if a busy application is running in the background, such as the app update process, brings up the clock icon halting you from doing anything else.
Build quality is great, as we'd expect from a BlackBerry. The matt, rubberised back feels tough and secure, but it's easy to slip off if you need to get to the battery compartment and SIM card slot. The rear also houses the lens for the 5-megapixel camera.
This takes crisp shots with little noise. It's nice to see an LED flash, which can help illuminate dark areas, letting you use the Bold 9790 to take shots in pretty much any conditions. A dedicated camera button sits on the side of the phone underneath the volume rocker switch. It's useful if you turn the phone on its side, although the screen orientation means that you're taking pictures in portrait mode. For landscape shooting we found it easier to hold the phone normally and use the trackpad button, particular as swiping up or down on this zooms in and out.
Video can also be shots at 640x480. Again it looked crisp and the results were smooth, but the quality and resolution lags behind the best smartphones, such as the Apple iPhone 4S.