RIM BlackBerry Torch 9860 smartphone
BlackBerry Torch 9860 review: A touchscreen-only BlackBerry? Only for casual users
- Well built, great screen
- Excellent Web browsing and interface
- Touchscreen typing is imperfect
- Hidden volume buttons
The BlackBerry Torch 9860 is a touchscreen-only smartphone like the iPhone or any generic Android. Given that the BlackBerry calling card has always been excellent physical keyboards (and excellent mail) we’re a bit confused as to the Torch’s purpose. The phone itself is built to a high standard and is powerful, but its imperfect touchscreen keyboard makes the Torch inferior to its tactile counterparts.
Price$ 799.00 (AUD)
BlackBerry Torch 9860: Keyboard and typing
We realise that the Torch 9860 is a BlackBerry aimed at touchscreen ‘enthusiasts’, for want of a better word, but it’s still a BlackBerry and should sell itself on the excellence of its text input (among other things, of course). The keyboard of the Torch 9860 is not bad by any stretch — it’s better than the ones we’ve used on most Android smartphones — but it doesn’t have the same slickness and pin-point accuracy we’re used to on the iPhone 4 and Samsung Galaxy S II.
We wish the phone was a bit wider with square-shaped on-screen keys — currently they’re slightly too thin and can be hard to hit accurately 100 per cent of the time. The large screen comes to the BlackBerry Torch 9860’s aid for landscape touchscreen typing though, where the keys are larger and are arranged across almost the entire screen. The trackpad makes scrolling through typing (and therefore correcting your possible errors) thankfully easy.
We are talking from the perspective of a long-time iPhone user, so perhaps that is a factor. Anyone using the Torch 9860 as their first touchscreen smartphone should be happy with the key response and should quickly get used to the key spacing. The fact remains that for a user already familiar with touchscreen smartphones, the keyboard isn’t perfect and a better experience can be found on a different device. If we were buying a BlackBerry with a lot of typing in mind we’d almost certainly opt for the BlackBerry Bold 9900.
BlackBerry Torch 9860: Conclusion
The BlackBerry Torch 9860 is a well designed, well constructed and well specced-up touchscreen smartphone. Its keyboard is our main pain point — and given that it’s a BlackBerry, made for heavy typists, we advise you to cautiously try before you buy.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Subaru XV 2017 review
- 2 Samsung 2017 QLED Q7 TV: Full, in-depth review
- 3 Kogan Atlas UltraSlim Pro laptop: full, in-depth review
- 4 Gigabyte Aorus GA-AX370-Gaming 5 AMD Ryzen AM4 motherboard review
- 5 Kogan curved 4K UHD 55-inch LED LCD TV review
Latest News Articles
- Fake heads and robot probes: testing smartphones prior to launch
- Rumor suggests the Note8 will be a bigger S8+ that adds a missing feature
- Xiaomi's Mi6 has the Galaxy S7’s looks, the S8’s power, and iPhone 7’s camera for half the price
- Samsung DeX turns your Galaxy S8 into a shockingly good desktop PC
- Find My iPhone helps nab a thief at Coachella with 100 phones in his backpack
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- Samsung Galaxy S8 phone: full, in-depth review
- Ryzen 5 vs Intel Core i5 CPU Australian review
- Mass Effect Andromeda review: One for the fans
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTService Desk - Level 1 SupportVIC
- CCService Delivery Analyst -Port MacquarieNSW
- CCCRM DeveloperACT
- TPEducation TechnologistNSW
- FTIntegration DeveloperWA
- FTBI Report DeveloperQLD
- CCCitrix SpecialistVIC
- TPBusiness Intelligence AnalystQLD
- CCCommercial ManagerVIC
- FTSolution ArchitectNSW
- FTBusiness Specialist - TelecommunicationsNSW
- FTNetwork Solution Architect - PresalesNSW
- FTSenior Data Warehouse ConsultantNSW
- CCFull Stack Developers x4!QLD
- FTAnalyst Programmer - Mulesoft Focus x 3NSW
- TPProject ServicesACT
- TPStrategic Business AnalystVIC
- FTSenior Infrastructure Business AnalystVIC
- CCSAP ISU Device Management ConsultantVIC
- FTTest AnalystACT
- CCIntegration ArchitectACT
- CCEnd User Services ArchitectNSW
- TPMaster Portfolio SchedulerVIC
- FTInfrastructure Project Manager Office 365 ImplementationVIC