AT&T has just become the first carrier in the world to offer the BlackBerry Torch. This breaks new ground in a couple of ways: it’s the first in RIM’s popular line of smartphones to offer a Touchscreen and a sliding keyboard. It is also the first with BlackBerry OS 6.0.
The design for the Torch 9800 starts with a 3.2-inch 360×480 capacitive touchscreen. Below this is an optical trackpad and the usual set of control buttons. Behind this sits a portrait-oriented sliding keyboard with 35 keys.
It includes 4 GB of built-in storage plus a microSD/SDHD memory card slot that supports up to 32 GB cards — a 4 GB card is included giving users 8 GB of storage out-of-the-box.
Naturally, the Torch support AT&T’s voice and 3G network, and it also includes Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g/n), Bluetooth, and a GPS receiver.
This smartphone also has a 5 megapixel camera with flash, auto-focus, image stabilization, and geo-tagging, and it offers a 1300 mAhr battery and a 3.5 mm headset jack.
A New BlackBerry OS
The Torch is the debut of BlackBerry OS 6.0, which includes really significant changes, making devices running it more competitive against Apple’s iPhone and smartphones running Google’s Android OS.
An updated user interface will be more functional and more fingertip friendly for Touchscreen devices like the Torch 9800.
In addition, it will include a much enhanced web browser that’s faster and includes support for more of the latest standards.
The Torch 9800 is going to run this OS on a 624 MHz processor with 512 MB Flash memory.
Pricing and Availability
The BlackBerry Torch 9800 is available now in AT&T retail stores and online at www.att.com/blackberrytorch. In additin, it can be found in Best Buy, Wal-Mart and Radio Shack stores.
It sells for $200 with a 2-year qualifying service plan.