Research In Motion (RIM) launched their second full touch-screen handset earlier this month, the BlackBerry Storm2 9520. The device is the successor to the original BlackBerry Storm, with new touch-screen technology, an updated operating system and, most importantly, Wi-Fi, which was sadly missing from the first handset.
Blackberry Storm 2 Vs Original Storm
The new and old models look very same with their large screens, same form factor, and the same core email and text messaging functionality. The Storm2 touch-screen is the significant change from the original Storm. Underlying the surface of the 3.25in display is an electro-mechanical mechanism for interpreting the touch-screen requests, whereas the previous handset had a purely mechanical mechanism.
Selecting an application or any item on both the original Storm and the Storm2 is still performed by just touching the display, while launching that item is done by pressing down on the moveable screen, which retracts slightly and then returns back to its starting position.
RIM has done away with the large plate under the screen and has replaced it with four smaller sensors. These are located under each corner of the display for a more accurate reading and interpretation of the user’s touch request as compared to the earlier single large plate.
This new SurePress technology in Storm 2 also allows faster typing. You are now able to press down on the screen in rapid succession, while in the past you really couldn’t mimic typing on a real keyboard. These four sensors also offer the capability of multi-press on the virtual keyboard, with the combination of holding down the shift or alt key plus another, which also wasn’t possible with last year’s Storm. We’ve seen multi-touch used on the Storm2 to zoom in and out of images. It’s not the iPhone’s ‘pinch to zoom in and out’, but it’s still a move in the right direction for RIM.
On the previous handset, the screen also moved in and out whether the phone was powered on or not. As the new SurePress technology isn’t just mechanical but is electro-mechanical, the screen doesn’t move with the handset powered down or even in standby. This should help in preventing wear and tear in the long run, or even help avoid general faults with the movable part of the screen in everyday use.
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