updated 09:30 am EDT, Fri September 7, 2007
BB Curve 8310 at Rogers
Canadian cell provider Rogers today became the first North American carrier to pick up the BlackBerry Curve 8310, Research in Motion's upgrade to its first mainstream smartphone with a full-size keyboard. The upgrade adds true GPS reception with BlackBerry Maps software that both provides driving directions and pre-assigns them to contacts for future use. The Canadian edition also has full access to instant messaging through either Yahoo! Messenger or BlackBerry Messenger for fellow members of RIM's push e-mail service.
The 8310 at Rogers is otherwise very close to the original Curve in hardware, with a 2-megapixel camera and flash, a 3.5mm headphone jack for listening to AAC or MP3 tracks, EDGE Internet access, and stereo Bluetooth audio. The carrier sells the upgraded BlackBerry for as little as $300 Canadian ($285 US) with a three-year term but will reduce the plan to two years for $450 ($428) or one year for $500 ($475). A contract-free price, as well as a release for American customers, both remain unavailable.