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05-06-2007, 08:48 PM #1
RIM Throws BlackBerry Fans A "Curve"
Attention CrackBerry addicts: your new fix is here, and it may be more potent than previous brands.
Waterloo-based Research in Motion is trying to strike while the technology is hot, introducing its third new BlackBerry model in less than a year.
This one is called the Curve and it's a step up from the highly popular Pearl.
The new device, which contains the usual phone and email functions, also comes with bells and whistles you weren't even aware your previous versions were missing.
Among them: a 2-megapixel camera with 5X zoom, built-in flash, a full screen viewfinder, a stereo headset jack and a built-in media manager that allows it to act as a more sophisticated MP3 player.
But it also has something that's not exactly new: a full QWERTY keyboard.
The Pearl was lauded for being stylish but not always user friendly. It came with a typing pad that put two letters on each key and used software to guess what word you meant to type.
The Curve goes back to the more standard layout, something many users had requested.
"For those that were eagerly awaiting for a Pearl-like design with a full QWERTY keyboard, this is it," agrees RIM co-Chief Executive Jim Balsillie.
The company calls the device the smallest and lightest it's ever made, and is aiming at the high end market of professionals who want the latest and the greatest technology.
But it's also trying to snag some consumer interest, as well.
BlackBerrys have been a huge hit with corporate and business types, but most consumers prefer cheaper cell phones.
RIM hopes that by throwing this Curve into the mix, you'll be willing to at least take a swing at it.
There's no word on exactly when it will hit the market, but it's not expected to cost more than Cdn$220.
The announcement of the new model comes after a difficult month for the Canadian firm.
In April, it experienced a day-long blackout that left many devices crippled across North America.
It was later revealed that a software update that didn't go as planned was behind the glitch, leaving more than eight million users across the continent without their regular service.
For more info on the Curve, click here.
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