BlackBerry Storm User Guide

Michael Kwan
BlackBerry Storm User Guide

Amidst all the excitement surrounding this new cell phone, many people have gone on the hunt for a BlackBerry Storm user guide. This mobile phone from Research in Motion is distinctly different from any BlackBerry that preceded it, because it takes on a whole new user interface and it lacks a physical keyboard altogether. How does this phone work? Will it be suitable for business professionals?

What's New with BlackBerry Storm

Up until now, most BlackBerry PDA phones have been designed with the corporate market in mind. This is why these phones focus so much on their ability to "push" email messages in real time and their ability to manage busy appointment books. In following this line of thought, phones like the BlackBerry Curve come with a full QWERTY keyboard. This makes it a lot easier to enter a lot of text as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Looking at the BlackBerry Storm user guide will reveal this phone does not have a QWERTY keyboard. It does not even have a regular numeric keypad. Instead, the majority of the user interface will be done through the innovative touchscreen display. In this way, comparisons have been drawn to such devices as the HTC Touch Diamond and the Apple iPhone 3G. The key difference is the touchscreen on the BlackBerry Storm actually "clicks" as if it were a real key. This level of tactile feedback makes for quite the interesting experience.

Whereas something like the BlackBerry Bold is designed to offer a high-end experience for enterprise users, the BlackBerry Storm seems to be more of a consumer-minded product like the more affordable BlackBerry Pearl. Sure, corporate users will still appreciate the BlackBerry core, but it's clear that Research in Motion is going after more of the mainstream audience with a device like this.

In this way, you'll find that the main BlackBerry Storm user guide describes a fair bit of multimedia functionality, including how to use the digital camera, how to operate the integrated music player, and how to navigate through the photo viewer.

Storm Tips and Hints

Because the Blackerry Storm uses a modified version of the standard BlackBerry operating system, not all BlackBerry applications will be used in the same way as they would on a conventional BlackBerry phone. For example, where keyboard entry or trackball navigation is normally required, the interface may be adjusted to utilize the touchscreen instead.

Looking toward the future, the Storm may be treated to several unique BlackBerry games that take advantage of this touchscreen, just like the great games found on the Apple iPhone 3G. These will come with time, assuming that the Storm is enough of a success to warrant that kind of attention.

In terms of some general tips and hints for using the BlackBerry Storm, you will find a useful guide on the BlackBery website that outlines some basics. Among the pointers are the following:

  • Highlight an item by touching the screen lightly
  • Select an item by pressing the screen until it clicks
  • Select text to cut/copy by simultaneously pressing the beginning and end of the text
  • Scroll down by sliding your finger up (and vice versa)
  • Move between items (like photos) by sliding your finger to the left or right quickly
  • Zoom in to a picture or web page by clicking the screen
  • Zoom out by pressing the return key
  • Hold the phone in portrait mode to use the SureType virtual keyboard
  • Hold the phone in landscape mode to use the QWERTY virtual keyboard
  • Hide either keyboard by sliding your finger down
  • Press the BlackBerry button to access an application menu

Where to Find the Full BlackBerry Storm User Guide

At the time this article was written, there were two official versions of the BlackBerry Storm: the 9500 and the 9530. They are fundamentally the same handset, but have some minor differences. In this way, when looking at various guides and tutorials, it is important to differentiate between the two models.

You can download the BlackBerry Storm user guide in its entirety through the BlackBerry Support page on BlackBerry.com. This is the official website from Research in Motion, makers of the BlackBerry line of smartphones.

BlackBerry Storm User Guide