The BlackBerry Bold was one of the standout devices of last year – it was RIM's statement that it was coming for the consumer market.
And while it was successful, there always comes a time for a refresh, and that's where the new BlackBerry Bold 2 9700 comes in.
It's a sleeker, faster and more able device than its predecessor, and it shows. We're talking 16g lighter, 6mm less wide, 5mm less tall and a whopping 0.9mm thinner.
But what this means is a more cramped keyboard, which will be a big worry for some who picked up the Bold, not because it was one of the first BlackBerry's to use 3G, but because it had one of the largest keyboards in the range.
The device's diet does add a touch of class to proceedings – it now looks like a Storm 2 handset but with a whole lot of keys jammed on instead. The top of the phone houses two buttons: the lock and the mute keys. The former will turn off the screen and lock the keys, and the latter will mute the phone when ringing, but holding it down will put the phone into standby mode.
The screen is now among the most high-res in the BlackBerry world, as it stands at a Magic-matching HVGA resolution. It's also supposed to have a light-sensing display, but the Bold 2 9700 seemed confused about that function, constantly upping the brightness of the screen when light conditions don't seem to change.
However, we're worrying that the new design might actually alienate previous bold users, who found the larger keyboard to be a real boon when it came to typing out messages. The wider shape might have annoyed some people, but given that a fair amount of the hardware is the same we're wondering whether most might prefer the old version.