Like most new RIM devices leaks mean the BlackBerry Storm hardly comes as a surprise, but we're still getting a warm and fuzzy feeling after seeing it all official-ed up.
So with an air of finality I can finally state if / when you snap up a BlackBerry Storm you'll be treated to the following: a 3.25in, 480 x 360 pixel touchscreen display, 3.2MP camera with autofocus and video, HSDPA, aGPS, a 3.5mm headphone jack, oh and MMS and copy and paste! RIM also claims the 1400 mAH battery will deliver up to six hours of talktime on 3G networks and up to 15 hours on standby (Bluetooth, 3G off, etc).
On the downside the Storm will feature just 1GB of native storage but a microSD HC memory card slot with be compatible with capacities up to 16GB, while DataViz 'Documents to Go' will allow users to view and edit Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint files and BlackBerry Media Sync will even let it synchronise with iTunes. A multimedia player will also offer 11 preset equaliser settings, show video in full screen and take advantage of a full Bluetooth 2.0 with A2DP profile which enables full range wireless audio streaming.
Throw in RIM's famed push email and general corporate friendliness, a scaling web browser, RSS support and choice of virtual Qwerty keyboard or virtual SureType text entry methods and Apple, Samsung, Nokia and LG have a major rival on their hands.
On the downside there's no WiFi (odd), plus we have heard reports the touchscreen isn't as sensitive as the iPhone and the virtual keyboard is a love it / hate it affair while the browser still isn't up to snuff - but quite frankly we're not letting second hand reports put us on a downer at this stage.
The BlackBerry Storm will hit the UK next month initially exclusively on Vodafone with other networks all confirmed to hop on the smartphone once that (undetermined) period ends. Expect generous subsidies on decent contracts and revel in the fact the touchscreen market just got even more competitive...
Update: The Storm will be free on a Vodafone contract of £35pm and upwards. Game on Apple!
BlackBerry Storm @ RIM
BlackBerry Storm @ Vodafone