After spending some extended time with the Telus BlackBerry Storm, it’s now my pleasure to share my impressions with all the Canuck Storm Chasers out there. Hit the jump to read more about Application Center and OS information, multimedia features, texting, and some price/release date speculation.
Where to begin? Well let’s start first with what immediately stood out about the OS. First of all, let me state that the Telus Storm OS is not yet final. Telus has yet to confirm/load which applications will come on the Storm (this should be happening very soon), and I was told that they were still tweaking the OS for performance. I wasn’t told whether the optimization is for use on Telus’ network or the touchscreen interface, but I did notice a slight delay in letters appearing on the screen while I texted. I also had a bit of trouble getting the accelerometer to switch from portrait to landscape mode consistently, but I think this was due to blogger FAIL than anything else.
Interestingly, the Telus Storm did not feature the BlackBerry Application Center that launched with the Verizon Storm. When I asked about its absence, I was told that Telus was ‘looking into it’ and ‘eager to talk to RIM’. While I wasn’t able to snag a peak at the OS version, the tweaking and the lack of apps or App Center leads me to believe that the Telus Storm will launch with something higher than OS 18.104.22.168. Now might be a good time to mention that I’ve heard RIM is hoping to release either a .70 or .72 version to carriers this week.
But let’s focus more on what was feature on the Telus BlackBerry Storm. If you’ve read my earlier post, you’d know this already, but I can confirm the Telus Storm will launch with an 8GB MicroSD card. Pre-loaded on the card comes a boat load of great music and music videos from Canadian label Arts and Crafts. This is an extremely smart consumer move on Telus’ part, and will appeal to the university student crowd eying the iPhone. Here’s hoping Telus takes this relationship to the next level and does some sort of Storm Rocks concert series for the average consumer featuring some Arts and Crafts bands. You can read more about the whole arrangement here.
As you can see from the picture above, videos like the one above look great on the BlackBerry Storm. As you may know, the Storm sports the Bold’s HVGA resolution, but on a larger 3.25 inch screen. This means that the Storm sports a lower pixel density than the Bold, and thus it’s videos are only ‘sharp’ instead of ‘crazy insane sharp’, but the trade off is that videos are much easier to watch from farther away on the large screen; I think it’s a trade off most people would make.
The picture below comparing the Storm’s camera to the Bold’s shows that the Storm is as good at capturing media as it is displaying it. You can read more about my camera comparison here. The Storm’s screen is also much brighter and it’s speakers much louder than the Bold, pushing it over the top as the best multimedia BlackBerry around.