New Bold is ‘no game changer’

Research in Motion’s soon-to-debut Bold is “strong” but no “game changer” according to a product analysis from Citi Investment Research.

Analyst Jim Suva, who isn’t available for an interview this week according to Citi Group corporate communications, likes what he sees with the Bold, the latest BlackBerry due out from RIM anytime.

Well, at least when there are no 3G network glitches in sight, apparently.

Suva spent 12 hours putting the Bold through a bunch of tests that included various network configurations, and application uses from email to movie watching to drop and water spill tests.

**Here’s what he likes**:

– Completely new Web browser with HTML support is a big improvement from the Curve and Pearl
– The ability to edit documents received via email & send with revisions (Word, Excel, PowerPoint)
– Meaningfully improved display
– World class speaker and phone reception
– Voice recognition by Nuance works well (call home, call office, call Jim)
– Email & voice to work in Japan & Korea unlike other Blackberry products, which for business travelers is a big positive
– Good video taking and playback
– GPS works very easy and is free
– Very easy device and software set up {Suva figured it all out without technology help or instruction manual]

**Here’s what he doesn’t like**:

– We had a few occasional 3G signal dropping troubles at some locations especially on high-rises building streets & on our 34th floor (EDGE picked up immediately but slower internet speeds)
– Smudges on the screen from our extended testing
– Not a touch screen phone (nor was this expected but wait for future products in 2H08)
– I [Suva] did not get an instruction book (likely because it is not carrier certified/launched yet in North America or at AT&T) but managed to get everything set up (email, phone, internet, GPS) very quickly
– 2MP camera could have had more MP resolution.


In summary we are positive on the Bold (strong product but not a complete game changer) and we believe it will appeal to business users especially those who travel internationally but less so to consumers given its likely high price (Rogers $399).

**Here’s my take**: [[note very unofficial since I haven’t seen the Bold]

RIM apparently went back to its roots after reaching out consumers with its last few devices, which is likely a smart move given how Apple keeps trying to reach for that enterprise gold smartphone ring.

Yes, I know it’s hard to improve on excellence, but as my college coaches always said, there’s always room to improve.

So what is with the 2MP camera?

I mean, I have that on my phone and believe me when I say I have a no-name phone and it’s not very smart.

Also consider the fact that Web rumors claim Motorola’s coming out with a 8 MP camera in a few months.

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