The Black Berry Bold 9900 (or alternatively the Black Berry Bold Touch) is a classic Black Berry messaging phone with the addition of compact touchscreen display.
The keyboard is well designed and quite possibly the best in class. The little touchpad controller on recent Black Berry handsets is easy to use and almost makes the touchscreen unnecessary.
Inside the Bold 9900 is a very fast 1.2 GHz processor combined with 768MB of RAM, which is a lot of power for a handset such as this, and it certainly makes it powerful enough for multimedia playback and gaming.. assuming that the smallish screen isn't a problem for you. There's also a generous 8GB of on board Flash memory plus a microSD slot.
On the back is a 5 megapixel camera capable of 720p video recording (the Bold 9900 can also play back 720p video too). Inside, the Bold 9900 supports GPS, has a built in digital compass, accelerometer and a proximity sensor.
This is a tri-band HSPA+ device with support for both 2.4GHz and 5GHz WiFi networks plus quad-band GSM. There is also a Black Berry Bold 9930 variant which adds CDMA/EVDO support for US networks. The Bold 9900 also supports Bluetooth 2.1. The whole package weighs 130 grams and measures 115 x 66 x 10.5mm including the 1230mAh battery.
Although the Bold 9900 is clearly a useful improvement over previous models, it is only really likely to attract existing Black Berry users looking for an upgrade. It's worth bearing in mind that RIM shocked investors by recently issuing a warning about profits, and their new PlayBook tablet has had some very poor reviews. RIM really need to take some of the expertise that is clearly apparent here and make something that will claw back some market share.