Monday, November 26, 2007

RIMM's iBerry?

I was thinking about getting a new blackberry from Research in Motion (RIMM) for my birthday next year and just in time, a neat little device is being planned.

From Unstrung:
The 9000-series is described by Carmi Levy, an analyst at AR Communications Inc. , as "the future of the BlackBerry franchise," a complete breakaway from the device's business roots. Instead, the new series targets the consumer space served by the Pearl and Curve models.

"The 9000 is supposed to be a touch-screen device, very similar in form factor to the iPhone," Levy says. "Which means that it is not an enterprise-friendly device."

The 9000 series will break from the traditional half-screen, half-keyboard look of the BlackBerry. The handsets will also incorporate an upgraded multimedia system, along with the standard push email capabilities. Better MP3 and video capabilities are crucial if RIM is to take on Apple, Google, and others.

Levy speculates that RIM will introduce the 9000-series in the first quarter of next year. "They were originally shooting for the second half of 2007," he notes.

The touch-screen devices, however, won't mean the end of the line for the 8000 series, because businesses will still need devices with proper QWERTY keyboards. "There will be incremental updates. They won't disappear," Levy says.

Among the updates will be "a Curve with WiFi," according to Levy. These devices may have other updates like GPS location tracking and higher resolution onboard cameras as well

I have toyed with folk's iPhone from Apple (APPL) but just disdain At&T (T) slightly more than my carrier Sprint(S) so that rules out Mr. Jobs' (had he not tried to screw every penny out of the device he would have sold millions more of them). Since I am pretty sure the price of my leaving them would be a child, I am going to stay with Sprint for now. That and their network is leap and bounds better than the "T's" is.

I am very intrigued by this phone and cannot wait to see and try it. A new phone is in the cards for the bday and this just might fit the bill.

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