As we've mentioned, the BlackBerry Torch is RIM's first smartphone with the all new BlackBerry 6 OS. This revamped OS adds a number of long-awaited features such as a new, more powerful web browser, universal search feature, an overhauled multimedia experience, and more. Even with all of these new features, RIM has maintained many of the key features that have been present in the BlackBerry line for years. In fact, loyal BlackBerry fans will appreciate the instant familiarity that is present when they pick up the Torch.
BlackBerry 6 has a redesigned home screen which features a notification bar at the top. This bar will alert you to new messages, calls, and events. The top bar also provides access to the phone's universal search feature which will scan your folders, apps, email, and the Internet to help you find the information you're looking for.
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At the bottom of the home screen, you'll find a new navigational bar that takes advantage of the phone's touchscreen. By swiping your finger across the screen, you can access apps and other content that is organized into categories such as Favorites, Media, Downloads, and Frequent. By tapping on the category heading or dragging it with your finger, you'll see an expanded view with more options.
Enhanced web browsing is one of the key new features you'll find in the BlackBerry 6 OS. The browser has been completely revamped and now offers pinch and zoom controls, tabbed browsing, and more.
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Many BlackBerry users will tell you one of the things they love about their phone is the messaging and email capabilities. RIM has kept these strong points of its OS and brought them over to the new BlackBerry 6 OS. Business users will appreciate the ability to sync with the BlackBerry Enterprise Server just as with previous BlackBerry devices. Home users will like the fact that they can synchronize up to 10 POP3 or IMAP4 email accounts using the BlackBerry Internet service. When viewing email, you can opt to view individual account inboxes or a unified view.
For social networking addicts, BlackBerry 6 can pull various sources of information together into a single view. With the social feeds app, you can see social networking and RSS feeds. The app supports Facebook, Twitter, AIM, BlackBerry Messenger, Google Talk, MySpace, Windows Live Messenger, and Yahoo! Messenger. You can type an update and send it to multiple networks with a few taps. RIM also upgraded the text messaging interface by adding a threaded text view for reading SMS and MMS messages.
Click to enlargeBlackBerry 6 features an overhauled multimedia experience complete with a dedicated YouTube app, podcast app, Web Video Search, AT&T Music, PrimeTime2Go, Slacker Radio, and more. The Torch ships with the BlackBerry App World preinstalled. Considering you'd have to download the store on previous BlackBerry devices, this is definitely a nice addition.