The long wait appears to be over as BlackBerry’s first foray into the touchscreen world has begun with the BlackBerry Storm. First off, the device looks like a serious contender for Mobile of The Year. It is sleek, shiny and the screen just pops out at you in both portrait and a stunning landscape mode that BlackBerry lovers have been waiting 9 years to see. Its got anything and everything a smart phone should have and more except of course for WiFi which seems odd and out of place nowadays, I mean even the lacking G1 has wireless capabilities. The highlights are as follows:
3 MegaPixel Camera that supports both still and video
GPS with BlackBerry Maps
Corporate Data Access
1 GB internal memory with support for microSD
MMS (hint hint Apple)
High resolution 480 x 360 pixel color display
On screen keyboard: portrait SureType® and Multi-tap, QWERTY landscape
Microsoft Exchange Support
- UMTS/HSPA: 2100 MHz
- North America: 850 MHz GSM®/GPRS networks
- North America: 1900MHz GSM/GPRS networks
- Europe/Asia Pacific: 1800MHz GSM/GPRS networks
- Europe/Asia Pacific: 900MHz GSM/GPRS networks
- Dual-Band: 800/1900 MHz CDMA/Ev-DO networks
It touts a revolutionary tactile response with a technology they call SurePress, it feels like you are touching real keys and a real keyboard eliminating one of the biggest complaints with touch screen devices. The only real draw back I see is that it is being sold on the Verizon network which isn’t GSM now is it? Not sure the reason Research In Motion went this route but my guess it was cold hard cash as opposed to common sense. Luckily its a quad band phone that can do just about every network and data system outside of Sprint. The tough part of the equation is if you want this thing unlocked for your worldly GSM network get out the Amex card and be prepared to pay upwards of a thousand, yes bones or clams or whatever you call them.
This is the device that could put BlackBerry into the mainstream but with a price like that it just might be pricing itself out of the game before the national anthem is even sung. That’s not to say its not an impressive smartphone but anything over the $500 range isn’t going to get many takers in the economic landscape we now find ourselves in. Lets hope soon there after its hits T-Mobile or AT&T with a large subsidy that puts it in the $300 2 year contract range sometime after the holidays.
Verison has announced a launch of November 21st and a price of $199 with a 2 year contract after a $50 rebate
As of today it has launched in the U.K. on Vodafone and is free with a 2 year contract and a £29.79 per month rate plan.