Print 24 comment(s) - last by bodar.. on Aug 4 at 9:33 PM

RIM's latest BlackBerry smartphone is coming August 12

Research in Motion is scheduled to have a press conference at 11:00am today to announce its new BlackBerry 9800 "Torch" smartphone, but launch partner AT&T has jumped the gun a bit. AT&T just launched its product page for the phone, so the cat is officially out of the bag.

The BlackBerry Torch is a "slider" phone with a full QWERTY keyboard (backlit) and optical trackpad. Naturally, the phone also sports a touchscreen dispel (3.2", 480x360), 5MP camera, GPS, 802.11n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 2.1, 3G connectivity, 624MHz processor, 512MB/512MB (RAM/ROM), 4GB flash, and a 4GB microSD card.

The phone weighs 5.68 ounces and measures 4.4" (5.8" open) x 2.4" x .57". The Torch comes equipped with a 1300 mAh lithium battery, and as a result, GSM talk time is rated at 5.5 hours while standby time is rated at 17 days.

The BlackBerry Torch also has MediaSych functionality which will allow it to sync wireless to your home music library via Wi-Fi.

Most importantly, the Torch ships with RIM's BlackBerry 6 OS which incorporates an all-new web browser, "next generation" messaging system, integrate search right from the home screen, and a "feed application" to capture all of your Twitter, Facebook, and MySpace social networking updates.

“This is one of the most significant launches in RIM’s history and we are proud to introduce the new BlackBerry Torch and BlackBerry 6 together with AT&T,” said Mike Lazaridis, president and co-ceo, Research In Motion. “With a new user interface, new browser and new handset design, the highly anticipated BlackBerry Torch and BlackBerry 6 deliver integrated and uncompromising capabilities for consumers and business professionals that preserve the industry-leading strengths of the BlackBerry platform while adding exciting new dimensions.”

According to information AT&T just sent us, the phone will be priced at $199 with a two-year contract and $499 with no commitment. The Torch will be available to customers on August 12.

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By Alphafox78 on 8/3/2010 11:02:27 AM , Rating: -1
This thing looks like every other blackberry I have ever seen. so it slides? oh ok.

RE: zzz
By bug77 on 8/3/2010 11:09:14 AM , Rating: 3
It's a phone that looks like other (successful) phones. What's wrong with that?

RE: zzz
By Brandon Hill on 8/3/2010 11:12:01 AM , Rating: 5
Damned if you do, damned if you don't. I personally think it looks quite sleek and I can't wait to try out OS 6

RE: zzz
By ChronoReverse on 8/3/2010 1:07:51 PM , Rating: 3
Looks fine to me. The real issue for me is really OS6 and how it works in practice.

A webkit browser doesn't impress me since that's already on both Android and iOS. Even if it's quicker it can't be that much quicker.

The screen resolution is a little disappointing but still passable. It's not going to entice me from my Android phone but it doesn't look bad either (yet).

RE: zzz
By omnicronx on 8/3/2010 1:38:07 PM , Rating: 3
No platform has yet to pull off a good down sliding qwerty keyboard with a large touchscreen. I'm even a Palm Pre owner and I will be the first to say the keys are way too small.

The smaller screen seems to be a trade off for a good down sliding keyboard (which appears to be similar to the bold, which in my opinion is the best keyboard on the market).

Furthermore, this phone is not exactly meant to compete with Android in the first place. Getting a webkit browser which in my opinion was by far the biggest downfall of BB can only be a good thing.

RE: zzz
By ChronoReverse on 8/3/2010 1:53:47 PM , Rating: 2
That's true, a narrower phone tends to make the buttons too small (or worse like what I had to suffer through with a Blackberry Pearl) for a physical keyboard.

For physical keyboards, a side slider (like the Droid) is still probably the best IMO.

RE: zzz
By bodar on 8/3/2010 10:40:29 PM , Rating: 2
Keyword: yet

Have you seen the Dell Lightning (Win7 Phone)? Portrait slider + 4.1" touchscreen

RE: zzz
By quiksilvr on 8/3/2010 1:24:52 PM , Rating: 2
I wouldn't hold your breath on OS 6. It is a step in the right direction but still very behind the competition.

And I thought ROM was the storage, shouldn't it be 512MB/4GB RAM/ROM? Or am I thinking about this the wrong way?

RE: zzz
By themaster08 on 8/4/2010 3:23:22 AM , Rating: 2
ROM stores the firmware and is not usable.

RE: zzz
By Reclaimer77 on 8/3/2010 11:21:11 AM , Rating: 5
It looks like it has an internal antenna that actually works, too.

RE: zzz
By bunnyfubbles on 8/3/2010 11:32:19 AM , Rating: 2
I'm pretty sure the appeal is that you get a full qwerty keypad and don't compromise on the touch screen due to the slider functionality.

Of course the obvious compromise is going to be in overall bulk/size of the phone, however considering again the size of the screen + full keypad, I doubt people will really care as this design doesn't seem too much bigger or bulkier than other similar smart phones.

RE: zzz
By omnicronx on 8/3/2010 12:05:49 PM , Rating: 2
Its a business phone, its not suppose to look like some snazzy consumer electronic.

Furthermore, this is DT, are you really judging a phone based on its appearance? I have a few friends that work at RIM, they say the new OS is pretty amazing.(and coming from people who don't use BB's). Browsing for one with its new webkit browser has been significantly enhanced.

RE: zzz
By xSauronx on 8/3/10, Rating: 0
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