Battle of the smartphones: RIM BlackBerry Bold vs. Apple iPhone 3G

Should you buy an iPhone 3G, or is RIM's top-of-the-line Blackberry Bold the better fit for you?

RIM's BlackBerry Bold is an email-centric smartphone that boasts plenty of multimedia features

RIM's BlackBerry Bold is an email-centric smartphone that boasts plenty of multimedia features

Design

Unsurprisingly, Apple wins this battle. The iPhone 3G is far from the most feature-packed smartphone on the market, but its design is excellent. The iPhone is sleek and attractive, combining gloss plastic on the rear, rounded chrome edges and Apple's famous attention to detail. The BlackBerry Bold is no slouch, though. Apart from being a little chunky, it's one of the more aesthetically pleasing BlackBerrys ever released. The black face, chrome edging and full QWERTY keyboard are excellent, though the battery cover on the rear does detract from the overall aesthetic in our opinion.

Winner: iPhone 3G

Text entry

The iPhone 3G's on-screen keyboard has long been the source of fierce debate — heavy e-mailers and business users often prefer a physical keyboard, while Apple fans argue the iPhone 3G's on-screen keyboard is just fine for text entry. Although we admire Apple's efforts in this regard and believe the on-screen iPhone keyboard is efficient, we feel that there is no substitute for a physical keyboard and RIM has produced an outstanding one — perhaps one of the best — on the BlackBerry Bold. The Bold's keys have minimal space between them, but the slightly curved shape of the keyboard is comfortable. Tactile feedback is excellent, and each key is responsive — the fact that you can slide your finger across the keys to select a letter without having to lift it off is excellent.

Winner: BlackBerry Bold

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Ross Catanzariti

Ross Catanzariti

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