BlackBerry-maker Research In Motion (RIM) and AT&T, the exclusive U.S. carrier for RIM's new BlackBerry Torch 9800 slider smartphone, yesterday let me know that a new software update is available for the Torch, "BlackBerry 6" v 18.104.22.168 (Bundle v22.214.171.1245)
The BlackBerry Torch 9800 software update is available through both RIM and AT&T, and it supposedly significantly improves Torch performance.
"BlackBerry Torch customers who upgrade will benefit from overall system performance improvements, including:
Browser: faster page loading and improved panning
User input: handled more efficiently, improved responsiveness after unlocking device
Applications: faster launching, exiting and switching
Home Screen: faster rendering and smoother transitions when switching between panes
Media: faster rendering of thumbnails in picture application
Email/Messaging: faster and smoother scrolling in message list and when reading email
- Voice-Software: improved audio quality
When I wrote my review of the BlackBerry Torch in August, I noted that though I appreciated the Torch hardware, the overall software experience was lacking, since the device seemed to lag and nearly freeze quite frequently. (The AT&T BlackBerry Torch originally shipped with OS v126.96.36.199, bundle v188.8.131.528.) I haven't downloaded this latest Torch 9800 software update yet, so I can't vouch for RIM's performance-improvement claims, but I will say such improvements would go a long way to resolving the issues I had with the device.
RIM says AT&T will push out the software update to users' devices so they'll see a home-screen icon when it's available for download in the next week or so, but you can also grab BlackBerry 6 v184.108.40.206 for the Torch right now if you don't want to wait. Grab the update via BlackBerry by opening up your Torch's Options menu, then choosing Device and next selecting Software Updates. Click the Check for Updates option, and if the software is available, you should be able to download it from there. (Note: For whatever reason, I've been unable to download Torch 9800 OS v220.127.116.11 using the wireless update method.)
You may also want to take a peek at my BlackBerry Torch Super Guide for Torch-related tips, tricks, accessories, free software downloads and more.