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RIM Unveils Blackberry Torch Smartphone

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RIM Unveils Blackberry Torch Smartphone

RIM has unveiled the Blackberry Torch, a touch-screen handset that the company hopes will help it compete with Android and iPhone devices.

The smartphone, also known as the Torch 9800, is the first RIM device to run Blackberry OS6, the latest version of the Blackberry operating system. It's also the first Blackberry to sport a slide-out keyboard, with a similar look to the Palm Pre.

The Torch features a WebKit-based browser with multi-touch support, while a universal inbox brings in content from Facebook, Twitter and email into one place. New features also include an auto wrap text zoom, which intelligently wraps text in a column. The new OS also brings a universal search feature, and threaded messaging to Blackberry Messenger.

Hardware wise it offers a 3.2in 480 x 360 display, a 624Mhz processor, and 512MB of RAM, and 4GB of internal storage, though there is a microSD card slot. The Torch is equipped with a 5-megapixel camera with a built-in flash. The camera use geo-tagging to automatically name pictures with the name of the city it was taken in.

Other highlights include a two-fingered double-tap feature to select multiple pictures as one, a wireless sync for music and a dedicated podcast application.

At the joint launch event between RIM and launch partner AT&T in the US, AT&T president Ralph de la Vega described it as, “the best Blackberry device ever”. Meanwhile RIM president Mike Lazaridis referred to the device as, “one of the most important product introductions in our history”.

As you would expect it's exclusive to the AT&T in the US and will be available for $199.99 on a 2-year contract. We’ll bring you UK carrier details as soon as we have them.

Has RIM finally got a touch-screen device that can truly compete in the smartphone world? Is the addition of a keyboard a killer feature? Let us know what you think.

Link: Blackberry US website

Keithe6e

August 3, 2010, 9:23 pm

@512Mb of flash memory, and 4GB of internal storage,





I assume that's 512mb of Ram, and 4GB of internal flash storage.

Malderon

August 3, 2010, 10:51 pm

I am currently a Storm user, I (unlike many Storm users) have been very happy with the device, although I think my next device will be Android.





This really does look nice though, I'm a big fan of physical keyboards as they allow you to have the full screen showing while typing. On my storm I get a tiny sliver of actual screenspace when the full qwerty screen keyboard is active. Blackberrys are great typing machines and if they can get the multi-touch controls right, and get everything to run nice and snappy, as well as improve the offerings on BB App World then this device will be a winner. Perfect compromise between a Storm and Bold with latest OS? Could be onto something.

xbrumster

August 3, 2010, 11:20 pm

best you can get at the mo in the business world

simonm

August 4, 2010, 12:05 am

Saw this demoed on TV earlier, scrolling and zooming just like an iPhone.





Like a rather sickly iPhone, mind - lacked the fluidity of the real thing.





Hope what I saw wasn't indicative of how the release units will perform; it would be a bit lame if RIM's iPhone rip-off couldn't match the responsiveness of the 3 year-old original.

CaptNemo

August 4, 2010, 6:15 am

I'm going to seriously consider getting one to replace my aging Bold 9000 and to *complement* my recently acquired Nexus One.





The N1 is awesome as a mobile computer, no doubt, but as a communications device it just seems gets in the way. Maybe I'll write some apps to replicate the Bold's functionality...





Anecdote Alert: My two cousins, one in there mid-twenties and the other who's exactly 20 (most definitely of the hipster pursuasion!) both have BBs rather than iPhones despite costing about the same. Why? Because messaging is much more efficient on a BB.

LetsGo

August 4, 2010, 3:34 pm

@CaptNemo my young relative's are doing the same, RIM have the right idea in producing handsets and OS designed for messaging.





It's not all about touch interface's, I can't wait for an Android phone with a decent hardware keyboard.

DrDark

August 4, 2010, 3:57 pm

I clicked on the article, the page loaded, and the word which instantly zipped through my noggin was "ugly". Anyone else?

Tony Young

August 4, 2010, 7:56 pm

It ain't pretty, is it?





Any chance I could have a Desire with a slide out keyboard?





Or is thast just too Incredible?

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