The RIM BlackBerry Curve 8520 is a sleek entry-level smartphone that delivers some nice design enhancements and great performance.

- Bonnie Cha , CNET 

Specs summary

Screen
2.6"

The BlackBerry 8520 Curve's screen is 2.6 inches with 320 x 240 pixels resolution.

Processor
512MHz

There is a 512 MHz processor (CPU).

OS

The phone runs on the BlackBerry operating system (OS).

Camera
2+ MP
You can take photos or capture video with the phone's onboard 2+ megapixel camera. There's no secondary front camera.
Storage
512 MB

Internal memory is 512 MB. An external, MicroSD (up to 32 GB) expansion slot is available for increased storage capacity.

Battery
1150mAh

The phone is powered by a Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion), 1150 mAh battery. BlackBerry's performance ratings are 17 days standby time, 270 minutes (2G).


Prices (Where to Buy)


Online Buying Options



Resources


Manuals / User Guides Helpful Links Carriers Who Offer This Phone

Fido, Rogers, Virgin Mobile Canada

Review Sources Have a question?

Visit the BlackBerry 8520 Curve Q&A Forum to ask the community a question or help others.


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BlackBerry 9330

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BlackBerry 8530 Curve

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Reviews (6.9/10 Avg. rating)


Very practical keyboard and four days of battery life

from Digital Versus ( )

If you don't need an entirely touchscreen phone, but do want a great physical keyboard, good battery life and a chance to try a BlackBerry without breaking the bank, then the Curve 8520 is a great choice. The design isn't that exciting, and surfing the web without 3G can sometimes be painful. The... More

If you don't need an entirely touchscreen phone, but do want a great physical keyboard, good battery life and a chance to try a BlackBerry without breaking the bank, then the Curve 8520 is a great choice. The design isn't that exciting, and surfing the web without 3G can sometimes be painful. The photos aren't great, either, and there's no GPS. But the things it can do, it does well, so it's up to you to decide what you really need!

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6/10

If you’re not too concerned about surfing the web and want something reliable, this Curve 8520 should be something to consider

from Mobile Syrup ( )

If you’re not too concerned about surfing the web and want something reliable, this Curve 8520 should be something to consider. You can hold up to 16GB of memory with a microSD card and can play all the music you want. Sound quality is decent, but nothing to write home about. In addition, a... More

If you’re not too concerned about surfing the web and want something reliable, this Curve 8520 should be something to consider. You can hold up to 16GB of memory with a microSD card and can play all the music you want. Sound quality is decent, but nothing to write home about. In addition, as all BlackBerry devices are truly about making the messaging experience.

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Affordable, multimedia keys, compact, slimline device

from What Mobile ( )

BlackBerry’s latest email/smartphone device is an affordable model featuring an optical trackpad to replace the traditional rollerball, along with a QVGA resolution display and 2-megapixel camera. The top of the phone now has three multimedia keys for play/pause, fast forward and rewind, for use... More

BlackBerry’s latest email/smartphone device is an affordable model featuring an optical trackpad to replace the traditional rollerball, along with a QVGA resolution display and 2-megapixel camera. The top of the phone now has three multimedia keys for play/pause, fast forward and rewind, for use with the integrated media player. The handset also includes Media Sync software for the PC and access to BlackBerry’s AppWorld store. There’s Wi-Fi and Bluetooth support, with a 3.5mm headphone jack on the side, above the Micro-USB charging/data socket.

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8/10

It has nearly all the features of full powered devices

from CrackBerry ( )

Overall I'm impressed with the Curve 8520. At this point I can't say I would use it daily due to my needs (and wants), but as I said previously I only wish it were around a few years back when I could have put it to the test. For me the deal breaker is jumping back to the lower resolution screen.... More

Overall I'm impressed with the Curve 8520. At this point I can't say I would use it daily due to my needs (and wants), but as I said previously I only wish it were around a few years back when I could have put it to the test. For me the deal breaker is jumping back to the lower resolution screen. The main thing to keep in mind is that the 8520 isn't necessarily an "upgrade" for current users, but designed as an entry level device for new users or those on a budget. It has nearly all the features of full powered devices like the Curve 8900, Bold and Tour, only with some slimmed-down specs. As Kevin put it a while back, the 8520 is like the BMW 3 Series. Its not the top of the line model or an upgrade for some drivers, but the need for an entry level option is always there.

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Upgraded features and more modern styling

from MobileBurn ( )

The BlackBerry Curve 8520, from Research In Motion, turns out to be both an excellent smartphone and a pretty darn good deal, as well. But with a price point only 13% below that of the Curve 8900, which features an autofocus camera and a high-resolution display, its hard to say if its as good of... More

The BlackBerry Curve 8520, from Research In Motion, turns out to be both an excellent smartphone and a pretty darn good deal, as well. But with a price point only 13% below that of the Curve 8900, which features an autofocus camera and a high-resolution display, its hard to say if its as good of a deal as its older brother. Either way, this doesn't diminish the fact that the RIM BlackBerry Curve 8520 does pretty much everything extremely well, with the exception of web browsing. That's enough to earn it our top mark, a "Highly Recommended" rating.

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Responsive QWERTY keyboard makes email very easy

from The Guardian ( )

The optical trackpad is a nice departure from BlackBerry's usual trackball, and when it comes to email the myriad of menus give way to single clicks, but this is a BlackBerry device so you'd expect it to get email right. It's the interaction between apps and device where things start to fall apar... More

The optical trackpad is a nice departure from BlackBerry's usual trackball, and when it comes to email the myriad of menus give way to single clicks, but this is a BlackBerry device so you'd expect it to get email right. It's the interaction between apps and device where things start to fall apart and where RIM still has a lot of catching up to do with Apple. The Curve 8520 is BlackBerry's new "entry-level" phone – though it is likely to appeal most to corporate users looking to save money – and it's free on Vodafone for anyone willing to sign up to a two-year contract at £25 a month. After that amount of time, I'd have gone mad.

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Phenomenal battery life and superior PIM functionality

from PhoneDog ( )

Described by many in the tech circle as the "BudgetBerry," the BlackBerry Curve 8520 represents a renewed push by RIM to appeal to first-time smartphone buyers. Scrappier than its BlackBerry siblings, one can immediately notice the cheap build quality, but as a result, the Curve 8520 offers a lev... More

Described by many in the tech circle as the "BudgetBerry," the BlackBerry Curve 8520 represents a renewed push by RIM to appeal to first-time smartphone buyers. Scrappier than its BlackBerry siblings, one can immediately notice the cheap build quality, but as a result, the Curve 8520 offers a level of durability that other BlackBerry devices can't provide. Despite its shortcomings in the design department, the device is quite functional, offering OS 4.6, a full QWERTY keyboard, Wi-Fi, a 2-megapixel camera, and RIM's new trackpad. As a new device appealing to a group not previously sought after by RIM, will the 8520 deliver and provide the ever-so-popular BlackBerry experience?

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8/10

Inexpensive device with a cool optical touch pad for on-screen navigation

from Phone Scoop ( )

Here you will find a video tour of BlackBerry 8520 Curve.

Here you will find a video tour of BlackBerry 8520 Curve.

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The first BlackBerry to use an optical trackpad, which replaces the trackball navigator

from CNET ( )

As an entry-level smartphone, the Curve 8520 lacks some of the bells and whistles of the RIM BlackBerry Curve 8900, such as GPS and a high-resolution screen, but it delivers on the core features and offers great performance. In addition, the smartphone features a sleek design that includes a new... More

As an entry-level smartphone, the Curve 8520 lacks some of the bells and whistles of the RIM BlackBerry Curve 8900, such as GPS and a high-resolution screen, but it delivers on the core features and offers great performance. In addition, the smartphone features a sleek design that includes a new optical trackpad and dedicated media controls.

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7/10

8520 is the worst phone Ive ever had.

( )
8520 is the worst phone I've ever had. I have replaced it 6 times in 8 months. Certain letters on the keypad stop working and on the last 2 which I've each had for a week, the battery runs out in less than an hour. Fido won't take responsibility for the crappy phone they sold me and just give me a... More

8520 is the worst phone I've ever had. I have replaced it 6 times in 8 months. Certain letters on the keypad stop working and on the last 2 which I've each had for a week, the battery runs out in less than an hour. Fido won't take responsibility for the crappy phone they sold me and just give me a new one already. I know that Blackberry makes the repairs but come on- someone take responsibility and DO something!

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1/10

This phone is junk

( )
I know it's my own fault, I should have done my research and I didn't. But this has got to be the worst Blackberry ever made. It has nothing to it, basic smart phone necessities, nothing special. I'm on battery #2, the phone constantly freezes and dies quickly. The camera blows....I know I should h... More

I know it's my own fault, I should have done my research and I didn't. But this has got to be the worst Blackberry ever made. It has nothing to it, basic smart phone necessities, nothing special. I'm on battery #2, the phone constantly freezes and dies quickly. The camera blows....I know I should have known this was the case with a 2mp but why would they put that in it anyways? I can get internet most times, it works well for that, email and texting but compared to other Blackberry's and smartphones in general this phone is seriously lacking. Don't bother. Spend the little bit of extra money and get the Bold 9700...that is an awesome phone with everything good this phone doesn't have.

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4/10

I miss the trackball!

from Amazon ( )
Had the older model of this phone (with a trackball instead of a pad) and loved it. Great phone and easy to text, which is the feature I use most. New phone has the same basic feel and the keyboard is great, but the trackball is gone! Maybe I'll get used to the new setup, but for now, I'm knockin... More

Had the older model of this phone (with a trackball instead of a pad) and loved it. Great phone and easy to text, which is the feature I use most. New phone has the same basic feel and the keyboard is great, but the trackball is gone! Maybe I'll get used to the new setup, but for now, I'm knocking a star off since the ease of use with the trackball was one of the things I really loved about the Curve and I think set it apart from other similar phones. As for the other features, I don't really use them. Probably more phone than I actually need. These days it's hard to find a plain phone though, especially with a qwerty keyboard.

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8/10

8520 is terrible

( )
I got locked into a 3 yr contract with this terrible blackberry. I've already had to replace it 3 times, that's right I'm on the 4th one in less than 30 days. It crashes, freezes, half of the apps don't work on this model, there is no gps, and no 3g ... what a rip off. I thought i was getting a good... More

I got locked into a 3 yr contract with this terrible blackberry. I've already had to replace it 3 times, that's right I'm on the 4th one in less than 30 days. It crashes, freezes, half of the apps don't work on this model, there is no gps, and no 3g ... what a rip off. I thought i was getting a good phone ... biggest mistake of my life. I should have gotten an Iphone.

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3.7/10

Gr8t blackberry

from Phonedog ( )
Pro: Excellent blackberry!! BAttery life last 24hr+ Con: Does not have GPS. does not have 3G coverage for tmobile users you cannot access your tmobile account from your phone. Using experience: 3 months overall blackberry did a great designing the phone ,but left out key elements that i believe a... More

Pro: Excellent blackberry!! BAttery life last 24hr+ Con: Does not have GPS. does not have 3G coverage for tmobile users you cannot access your tmobile account from your phone. Using experience: 3 months overall blackberry did a great designing the phone ,but left out key elements that i believe all smart phones shoulda have such as GPS and 3g coverage. Without these

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10/10

GREAT BB!

from Amazon ( )
I just bought this BB and let me tell you it is great, the features in this device are very nice.. First at all I have to tell to those who says this device looks with a lower quality because it is cheaper that your are SO Wrong!! it looks classy and modern, the black one that I own. Although th... More

I just bought this BB and let me tell you it is great, the features in this device are very nice.. First at all I have to tell to those who says this device looks with a lower quality because it is cheaper that your are SO Wrong!! it looks classy and modern, the black one that I own. Although the lack of flash might seem like bummer, let me tell you that for me is not that big deal, cuz at night if you have proper light you can take very decent pictures, the missing flash its something I can live without. The track pad is the greatest of all features, You wouldn't beleive how diferent and better than the track ball this feature is, no wonder why RIM wants to incorporate this track pad to all the future models!!It is such great evolution to the BB world. Excellent phone, I recomed it 110% !!!!!!!!!!

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10/10

Great Entry Level Blackberry - 3G is Still Missing

from Amazon ( )
I've been a long time AT&T costumer. I thought I could live without having an actual keyboard when it comes to texting, but after a week without my Sidekick Keyboard - I decided to ditch my Samsung Eternity for the Blackberry Curve 8520. I was hesitant about purchasing this smart phone because I w... More

I've been a long time AT&T costumer. I thought I could live without having an actual keyboard when it comes to texting, but after a week without my Sidekick Keyboard - I decided to ditch my Samsung Eternity for the Blackberry Curve 8520. I was hesitant about purchasing this smart phone because I was never a fan of Blackberry's (RIMM). I had a BB during their initial boom in the early part of the new millennium. However, the poor browser, poor cell phone network, lackluster screen color, non desirable keyboard, awful battery life, whack OS, & lack of T9 predictive text just couldn't win me over. After I realized that I couldn't text on a touch screen phone, unless it was the iPhone. I decided that I must have a cell phone device with an actual qwerty keyboard, if I expect to survive my text message & email addiction. I picked up the Blackberry 8520 with my corporate discount and walked away with a nice high end phone at a very reasonable price. I have to say that I really enjoy the web browser on the new BB. You can zoom in & out with ease. I thought no browser could compare to the iPod Safari besides the Android G1, but after getting this device - I can safely say that this browser is also one of the best. Its right behind the safari and G1. Prior models were confined to small screens, thirty-five dollar internet only data plans, and no ability to zoom in or out. You were subjected to a small screen and reading small text till your eyes was squinting like grandmas. Pros: New Optical Trackpad (Over the old Trackball) Big vibrant screen 3.5 MM headjack New OS Decent call quality (No issues yet) Excellent new broswer Mini SD up to 16GB (Wish it was 32GB) Use your songs as ringers Wi-Fi Personal Email (Up to 10 accounts can be added) IM Themes Applications (Coming on April 1st) My Favs Full HTML Web Browser (Sometimes) Excellent Multimedia Player (Accepts every format possible) Includes 2 chargers (Wall Charger & USB charger) Includes ear phones and carry case Cons: For long time BB users, this device is really just a cosmetic upgrade with a new OS (Flashier Icons) Micro USB (No more Mini USB) Video & Camera (2.0 Megapixel as oppose to 5.0) Still no 3G (I thought i could live without it, but TMobile has no 3G BB yet & its really about time) Cheap plastic rubber casing Non RIMM Consumer Changes Mind! For anyone who has wanted a BB but held off on getting one and want an entry level Blackberry at a decent price - this is the model to get. Everything about it is an upgrade. The device is basically the BB Bold with a different casing. The battery life could still use some more juice. With excessive email checking & non stop texting, the phone usually needs a charge after a day and a half of usage (Sometimes i can go a charge for 2 days before a charge so thats not bad). I did set the brightness of the phone to the lowest brightness available and it has lasted for a little over 2 days with no charge needed. Even on the lowest brightness, the screen is still very bright, sharp, & crisp. And i still do unlimited texting & web browsing. However, AT&T doesn't offer the best mobile minute plans on earth & their data plan is probably one of themost expensive around. They are fully aware that their signal is one of the best & in doing so, make up for it by charging their non-friendly services at non-friendly prices, which usually doesn't offers an abundant amount of minutes, unlimited data, internet, email, text etc will end up costing you a lot! One complaint from other phone techs is the lack of 3G. Yes, i was disappointed that the device is only on EDGE & Wi-Fi, but if you have a 3G enabled phone with only 1 signal bar - The chances of having a 3G signal is pretty slim. The EDGE browser signal on this device is fine & works just fine. I havent encountered any issues & comparing it with a 3G phone - the thing almost runs at the same pace. NO major biggy at all! I have used the wi-fi a few times & i think its super fast on Wi-Fi. I pay under seventy bucks a month for a decent amount of mins & unlimited everything else. My friend has a similar plan on Verizon, its not unlimited, and her bill is always over a hundred each month.

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8/10

Great Entry Level Blackberry - 3G is Still Missing

from Amazon ( )
I've been a long time AT&T costumer. I thought I could live without having an actual keyboard when it comes to texting, but after a week without my Sidekick Keyboard - I decided to ditch my Samsung Eternity for the Blackberry Curve 8520. I was hesitant about purchasing this smart phone because I w... More

I've been a long time AT&T costumer. I thought I could live without having an actual keyboard when it comes to texting, but after a week without my Sidekick Keyboard - I decided to ditch my Samsung Eternity for the Blackberry Curve 8520. I was hesitant about purchasing this smart phone because I was never a fan of Blackberry's (RIMM). I had a BB during their initial boom in the early part of the new millennium. However, the poor browser, poor cell phone network, lackluster screen color, non desirable keyboard, awful battery life, whack OS, & lack of T9 predictive text just couldn't win me over. After I realized that I couldn't text on a touch screen phone, unless it was the iPhone. I decided that I must have a cell phone device with an actual qwerty keyboard, if I expect to survive my text message & email addiction. I picked up the Blackberry 8520 with my corporate discount and walked away with a nice high end phone at a very reasonable price. I have to say that I really enjoy the web browser on the new BB. You can zoom in & out with ease. I thought no browser could compare to the iPod Safari besides the Android G1, but after getting this device - I can safely say that this browser is also one of the best. Its right behind the safari and G1. Prior models were confined to small screens, thirty-five dollar internet only data plans, and no ability to zoom in or out. You were subjected to a small screen and reading small text till your eyes was squinting like grandmas. Pros: New Optical Trackpad (Over the old Trackball) Big vibrant screen 3.5 MM headjack New OS Decent call quality (No issues yet) Excellent new broswer Mini SD up to 16GB (Wish it was 32GB) Use your songs as ringers Wi-Fi Personal Email (Up to 10 accounts can be added) IM Themes Applications (Coming on April 1st) My Favs Full HTML Web Browser (Sometimes) Excellent Multimedia Player (Accepts every format possible) Includes 2 chargers (Wall Charger & USB charger) Includes ear phones and carry case Cons: For long time BB users, this device is really just a cosmetic upgrade with a new OS (Flashier Icons) Micro USB (No more Mini USB) Video & Camera (2.0 Megapixel as oppose to 5.0) Still no 3G (I thought i could live without it, but TMobile has no 3G BB yet & its really about time) Cheap plastic rubber casing Non RIMM Consumer Changes Mind! For anyone who has wanted a BB but held off on getting one and want an entry level Blackberry at a decent price - this is the model to get. Everything about it is an upgrade. The device is basically the BB Bold with a different casing. The battery life could still use some more juice. With excessive email checking & non stop texting, the phone usually needs a charge after a day and a half of usage (Sometimes i can go a charge for 2 days before a charge so thats not bad). I did set the brightness of the phone to the lowest brightness available and it has lasted for a little over 2 days with no charge needed. Even on the lowest brightness, the screen is still very bright, sharp, & crisp. And i still do unlimited texting & web browsing. However, AT&T doesn't offer the best mobile minute plans on earth & their data plan is probably one of themost expensive around. They are fully aware that their signal is one of the best & in doing so, make up for it by charging their non-friendly services at non-friendly prices, which usually doesn't offers an abundant amount of minutes, unlimited data, internet, email, text etc will end up costing you a lot! One complaint from other phone techs is the lack of 3G. Yes, i was disappointed that the device is only on EDGE & Wi-Fi, but if you have a 3G enabled phone with only 1 signal bar - The chances of having a 3G signal is pretty slim. The EDGE browser signal on this device is fine & works just fine. I havent encountered any issues & comparing it with a 3G phone - the thing almost runs at the same pace. NO major biggy at all! I have used the wi-fi a few times & i think its super fast on Wi-Fi. I pay under seventy bucks a month for a decent amount of mins & unlimited everything else. My friend has a similar plan on Verizon, its not unlimited, and her bill is always over a hundred each month.

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8/10

More bang for your buck with this new Curve (minus some key features) 3 1/2 stars...

from Amazon ( )
Why are all BlackBerrys so expensive? Why can't we get the latest model in a reasonable price? The BlackBerry Bold was $299 with a two-year contract when it was first released on the AT&T network. The new Tour is $199 (with mail-rebate ) in both Verizon and Sprint. The Curve 8900 is $149 in T-Mo... More

Why are all BlackBerrys so expensive? Why can't we get the latest model in a reasonable price? The BlackBerry Bold was $299 with a two-year contract when it was first released on the AT&T network. The new Tour is $199 (with mail-rebate ) in both Verizon and Sprint. The Curve 8900 is $149 in T-Mobile -- still a little too steep for some people. Lower end users rejoice! Here comes the new Curve 8520! This new addition to the BB family has a new design and some introductory features, at an affordable price from T-Mobile. What separates this phone from others of the BB family is the new optical trackpad. Instead of a trackball, you use the trackpad to navigate, scroll and click on the contents of your phone. It's similar to trackpads found in the new MacBooks and some netbooks, and it is similar to the Storm's click-touchscreen, and it's quite easy to use. In fact, it is better than the trackball, in my opinion, because it moves faster and it's less likely to break or skip applications on you. It only took me about ten minutes to get used to it and so far I'm loving it. The 8520 also sports a new look. It is mostly made of some sturdy plastic, with rubbery edges and side-buttons, and with music buttons on the top of the phone for easy access to your entertainment. This new BlackBerry seems to be marketed for multimedia phone lovers as well as smartphone users. You get a bit of both, for this BB still has its useful business functionalities. The QWERTY keypad is easy comfortable to type on, no much change there. T-Mobile offers WiFi for faster Internet speed as well as making phone calls through that network (instead of using your minutes). All you have to do is be at a WiFi hotspot to take advantage of this useful and affordable feature. As good as the Curve 8520 is, there are some downsides to it as well. * A mediocre camera. It has a 2 MP camera with no flash. A big downgrade from the Curve 8900 and the Tour 9630. If you like to take good pictures, this is not the best camera phone for you. * No 3G network. But we already know that T-Mobile doesn't have 3G in most of the country yet, don't we? (Kind of obsolete if you ask me. Especially since other carriers like Sprint are already announcing the long-awaited 4G network.) You'll have to settle for EDGE speeds if you're nowhere near a WiFi hotspot. * The phone's overall look is below par to other BlackBerrys. It doesn't feel as luxurious or as sexy as the Bold, Storm, Curve or Tour. It kind of looks like the older BlackBerrys, actually, especially the frost-colored one. I guess that's what you get for paying less for a smartphone. * The screen resolution isn't as bright as the Bold, Storm and Tour. The WOW factor is cut shorter in yet another cool feature. It's no big deal, but it's disappointing nevertheless. That is all I can think of at the moment. You may take the good with the bad when you decide to buy this phone. However, for the price it's more than just great. You get it for $129 if you go to the T-Mobile store, or you can get it for even less if you buy it on this site or take advantage of any of the other promotions available in stores like BestBuy or Radio Shack. Good luck and enjoy.

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8/10