RIM's Blackberry "Pearl" 8120 is slim (107 x 50 x 14 mm) and surprisingly lightweight (91g) PDA in a stainless steel trim. It has a 240 x 260 pixel TFT display - large enough and bright enough for the applications, including excellent video playback. It does not have a landscape playback option.
The QWERTY keyboard is unusual being dual-input QWERTY keypad - the keys share two letters and are laid out in QWERTY format. It certainly takes some practice to use, but once familiar, can be quick and easy, helped by the SureType predictive text software.
This is a business-oriented device, but with multimedia capabilities: the media player is designed with PC software developer Roxio and offers playback for the common audio and video formats after a conversion via the PC media software that comes with the 8120. The Roxio Media Manager software converts the media, such as a DiVX video, to BlackBerry-friendly audio and video files with excellent results. The audio is clear and imported videos retain lip-synch for the duration - ah, for a landscape mode, though!.
A microSD slot is conveniently located on the side, so that you can "hot-swap" memory while the device is still switched on. A 3.5mm headphone jack allows you to use your own (probably better quality) headphones instead of the stereo hands-free kit in the box.
The Pearl 8120 comes with a 2 megapixel camera for acceptable, if not wildly exciting quality shots, plus LCD flash, with easy photo uploading to Facebook.
The 8120 is a quadband phone, making data connections at a similar speed to dial-up Internet with GSM/GPRS/EDGE support. It also adds Wi-Fi (802.11b/g) to its connectivity options - a "must have" feature for business smartphones and PDAs - especially since the regular Internet connection is plodding by comparison to a Wi-Fi connection.
The Pearl 8120 is a workhorse with entertainment facilities attached. Battery life is rated at four hours of talk time and 15 days on standby.
- Quadband phone for global roaming
- Excellent video player facilities
- Unusual dual-input QWERTY keypad
- Hot swap additional card storage facility
- Wi-Fi connectivity for fast Internet links
- 2 megapixel camera