Blackberry Bold 9900 Dakota Phone Review

Here we are…talking about the hottest Blackberry phone in the market, Blackberry Bold 9900 Dakota.

It took me 2 years to realize that my old Blackberry Bold 9000 was getting rusty and close to the point where I have been wanting to throw it to the wall. It failed me so many times. Imagine this…it froze every 2 days and sometimes, it even froze right when there’s an incoming call!! I ended up unable to receive the call and had to reboot the phone. So I told myself, “that’s it. I need to change my phone.” So I decided to switch to this sexy Blackberry Bold 9900 Dakota.

Alright…enough with my rambling about how I got this phone. Let’s get down to our business, shall we.

Specifications

  • Network:  GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900;  HSDPA 850 / 1900 / 2100 / 800; HSDPA 900 / 1700 / 2100
  • Dimensions: 115 x 66 x 10.5 mm
  • Weight: 130 g
  • Display: Type TFT capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors
  • Size: 640 x 480 pixels, 2.8 inches (~286 ppi pixel density)
  • Memory: Internal 8GB storage, 768 MB RAM; External Card slot microSD, up to 32GB
  • Wi-Fi: 802.11 b/g/n
  • Bluetooth: Yes, v2.1 with A2DP, EDR
  • NFC: Yes
  • USB: microUSB v2.0
  • Camera: Primary 5 MP, 2592×1944 pixels, LED flash
  • Video: Yes, 720p
  • OS: BlackBerry OS 7.0
  • CPU 1.2 GHz QC 8655
  • Sensors Proximity, compass
  • GPS: Yes, with A-GPS support
  • Media: MP4/WMV/H.263/H.264 player; MP3/eAAC+/WMA player
  • BATTERY Standard battery, Li-Ion 1230 mAh
  • Stand-by Up to 307 h (2G) / Up to 307 h (3G)
  • Talk time Up to 6 h 30 min (2G) / Up to 5 h 50 min (3G)
  • Music play Up to 50 h

Display

It has a beautiful display with vibrant color and spacious display. Blackberry Dakota also uses a Gorilla screen now, so you can rest assured knowing that your phone will stand the most “abusive” treatment.

Blackberry OS 7

Overall, Blackberry OS 7 is a solid operating system. However, there’s 1 major glitch on my Blackberry Bold 9900 Dakota phone. When it is rebooted, it oftentimes stuck around 70% of the process. Apparently, it is a known bug called a “reboot loop”. I’m currently using Blackberry OS 7.0 Bundle 2395. Some people said that this is just a minor glitch that will disappear once you upgrade your software. The one I’m using now is actually an upgrade from the previous one. I forgot that the Bundle # for the previous one, but it seems with this new bundle, I didn’t experience the “reboot loop” too many times. I hope your Blackberry Dakota reboots smoothly :) It just annoys me sometimes when I have to pull out the battery and put it back in when something like this happened.

NFC

This phone is one of the few phones that has NCF (Near Field Communication) in it. I can’t really test this out since I can’t find any place that offers an NFC tag to read from. However, this youtube video will show you how it works. One caveat…one of my friend bought his Blackberry Dakota from US (FYI, I bought this in Indonesia) and he didn’t have NFC installed on his phone, so be careful and make sure you check your phone (or ask the customer service if you are buying it online) if it has NFC or not. You are definitely missing out if your phone doesn’t have one. True that it’s not very useful now, but I can see it will be very useful few years down the road.

Camera

This is where Blackberry Bold 9900 Dakota is lacking. It only offers 5MP camera! Granted that it has flash built-in. However, it doesn’t have auto-focus feature. So when you are taking a close-distant picture, your camera phone will be having a hard time to focus on the object and give you a blur image.

Below are the few images taken from Blackberry Bold 9900 Dakota.

Battery

Now…this is also another area that my Dakota is lacking and what most of friend asked me,  ”How’s the battery?”

I would say my battery could last a good 12 hours. I usually unplug my phone from its charger at 7:30am, and it still has some juice left until around 9pm. Granted that I only use my phone to make few calls (around 3 calls/day), all day long using blackberry messenger, and  checking my twitter and email; but it is still good compared to my old Blackberry Bold 9000.

Some people said that you need to charge the battery 2-3 times a day. In my experience, I don’t have to. I did still buy an extra battery though, just in case…and a wall charger.

Case

The cellphone case that I used is made by Capdase. This is actually the first time I’m using that brand. I would say that it’s pretty sturdy, and the thing I like most about it is the thinness of it. Blackberry Bold Dakota 9900 is a thin phone, so if you were using a thick case, it will ruin the whole experience of using a thin cellphone.

Conclusion

Blackberry Bold Dakota 9900 is a solid phone in terms of technology. It has supreme display screen, fast processor, touch screen display, and NFC. However, its operating system needs some tweaks to make the whole experience of using this phone excellent. Would I recommend this phone to my friends? Yes, I would. However, I need to warn you that you might get few frustrations when you experience the “reboot loop”, so just bare with it. I bought this phone for around $450 without contract. I’m sure by the time you read this post, the price will be cheaper.

What do you think about this phone? if you are an owner of this phone, please give some of your experience of using one in the comment section below. Thanks.

  • Ask Me

    Hi,
    I bought my 9900 back in November in Dubai. The phone is nice & stylish, but the Reboot thing is annoying. It hangs a lot and every time it does hang there is no option but to remove the battery and then the phone takes forever to start due to being stuck on 70% for few mins. Battery life SUCKS on this phone I am a very heavy user of BBM (NOT even using Twitte, Facebook, Email, Not listning to Music or even using Net) but the most I got out of the phone is 5 hours. Bought an Extra battery and bunch or chargers (Car charger, Wall charger, Multiple USB cords for office/house/in pocket) always feel like carying extra load due to one phone. All the ppl who I know are having similar problems. Once of my colleage gave it for repair and they said nothing is wrong, its normal for the battery to last 4-5 hours. Any way I am never recomending this phone to any one. Actually I saved about 9 ppl from making a mistake of buying this phone. Hopefully when the OS7.1 is officially released all over the world it may have some battery preservation feature. Till then we walk around with extra luggage of batteries and chargers.

    Thanks and enjoy
    Kev from Dubai

    • http://myinternetcorner.com Steven Sentosa

      Hi Kev,

      I agree with you that the reboot loop is soooo annoying!! That’s actually my biggest concern. However, about the battery life, surprisingly, my blackberry 9900 is quite good. I’m not sure why :) It’s true that most of my friends told me that the battery life is horrible, so for those of you who bought this one, just be prepared to carry some extra baggage, such as extra battery and chargers to save your battery juice once it starts to running out.

      Actually I wonder if anyone has a Blackberry Dakota with a long battery life like mine?? It seems everybody owns a Dakota that only gets around 5 hours battery life. I start thinking that there’s something “right” (as oppose to something wrong) with my Blackberry 9900. LOL