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Quick Review: BlackBerry 7100t

The RIM BlackBerry 7100t

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The 7100t comes with a very nice group of accessories, including two USB Charging/Sync cables, an international travel charger, a nylon holster and a hands-free wired headset. The pair of sync cables makes it easy to take one with you on the road while the other stays connected to your PC at the office. Another nice feature of the 7100t is its ability to determine when it is in the holster and change the ringer profile accordingly, so you can set the ringer to vibrate when it's in the holster and have an audio ring when it's on your desk. One thing I did notice about the holster is that the phone fits very loosely and falls out if turned upside down. I would have preferred a flap or a latch over the top to keep the device in place.

An E-mail Alter Ego

I tested the 7100t by connecting to our BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES) and Exchange 2003. Almost immediately, I started receiving e-mail on the device. Certain attachments (Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, text files) can be viewed just by selecting them with the trackwheel. Through the BES, I also had secure access to the company directory as well as to our intranet Web site.

In Short
  • Product: Research In Motion 7100 Series
  • Version: 7100t
  • URLs
  • Pricing
    • Research in Motion BlackBerry 7100t, $199 (after rebates)
    • Service by T-Mobile: Starting at $59.99/month
  • The Good
    • Quad-band, for global GSM coverage
    • Slim, comfortable device for voice calls
    • Easy access to data and e-mail
  • The Bad
    • Limited Bluetooth implementation
    • Data sync process could be cleaner
    • Included holster doesn't secure the phone

The BlackBerry 7100t synchronizes addresses, calendar items and to-do lists through the BlackBerry Desktop software. It uses software from Intellisync to connect the device to PIM (personal information management) data from a number of sources, including Outlook, ACT! and GroupWise. Setting up the sync with Outlook was initially painless, but the sync process itself only ran when the device was connected to the PC or when I manually activated the device. To make sure you have the most current data, you have to disconnect and then reconnect the USB cable.

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