The Competition: Hands on with the BlackBerry 9550 Storm 2 "Odin"'s Kevin got his hands (and signature green coffee table) on RIM's next-generation touchscreen BlackBerry, the Storm 2, aka 9550, aka "Odin". And his early thoughts?

  • the hardware is much nicer
  • the click screen is more user-friendly
  • the operating system is basically the same

Is 2/3 enough? Says Kevin:

In going hands-on with the 9550, it becomes clear that this next-generation Storm is really an evolution of the original Storm. Yes, it's better in every respect, but I'm getting the impression it's sort of like when a new model year of a car comes out - it doesn't make the old one instantly obsolete.

TiPb was pretty tough on the original Storm, though so were many BlackBerry faithful (it was basically cast as the Vista of Smartphones, after all). Any chance the Storm 2 will turn the touchscreen form factor around for RIM? Anyone see it as a threat to the iPhone 3GS and iPhone 3.0? Or is it still about RIM providing that diversity to people who want the BlackBerry experience, and would never consider another device, touchscreen or no touchscreen? And if it disappoints, will RIM still lay the blame on consumer expectations in a post-iPhone world?

Rene Ritchie

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.