Sony Reader Wi-Fi PRS-T1 takes Xperia influence
Sony on Wednesday confirmed a long-expected update to its Reader e-book hardware. The Reader Wi-Fi, or PRS-T1, borrows much of its influence from the Xperia smartphone line, down to an 0.35-inch thickness and a lighter six-ounce weight dictated by a switch from aluminum to plastic. The design runs on a much newer, E Ink-made six-inch Pearl screen and now supports multi-touch for zoom as well as page turns through swipes.
E Ink puts video-ready Pearl screen sequel in 2012
E Ink global sales head Sri Peruvemba in an interview Monday both dampened hopes for a sequel to its Pearl e-paper displays while promising a major leap with the next release. He told CNET not to expect any replacement in 2011 but promised much better performance. The next generation could display full-motion video, or at least 24 frames per second.
Pearl 3G comes to Cincinnati Bell in the US first
Cincinnati Bell has become the first US carrier to offer the BlackBerry Pearl 3G. The device supports 3G networks and has a SureType keyboard rather than a full QWERTY one, as is common with BlackBerry handsets. It also gets an optical touchpad rather than the older Pearl's trackball.
Smallest, latest BlackBerry review
The Pearl has always occupied an unusual place in the BlackBerry line, if not the whole smartphone world: it's a smartphone for those who hate smartphones and the according price tags. With the Pearl 3G, though, RIM has blurred the line even further by packing 3G, GPS, Wi-Fi and even a high-resolution display into a phone no larger than a free-on-contract candybar. It's very promising, but we'll see in our BlackBerry Pearl 3G review if that amounts to a serious threat.
Moto Quench and BB Pearl 9100 hit Canada
Rogers added to its phone roster in two ways today with launches for two key phones. The BlackBerry Pearl 3G has surfaced at Best Buy Canada for $80 on a three-year contract and $450 contract-free. Its version is the stock 9100 with the SureType keyboard but a Rogers-only, red-to-black color scheme.
Carriers commit to new BlackBerries
A trio of carriers took advantage of RIM's Bold 9650 and Pearl 3G launches today to commit themselves to the new smartphones early. Sprint is the first to plan a hard launch and expects to carry the Bold 9650 on May 23rd for $200 on contract. Its version will cling to the reference BlackBerry but will add Sprint-specific extras like the music store and Internet streaming TV.
Pearl 3G gets 802.11n, T9 keyboard option
RIM kicked off the start of its Wireless Enterprise Symposium today by launching two particularly important BlackBerries. The Pearl 3G finally replaces the long-serving 8100 series and adds heavily requested 3G for GSM carriers as well as the trackpad seen on newer phones like the Bold 9700. It's furthermore the first BlackBerry ever to have an 802.11n Wi-Fi link and beats out most any other phone on a local network.
Pearl 9100 dummy arrives at Rogers stores
The BlackBerry Pearl 9100 and flagship Bold 9700 in white are due at Canadian wireless provider Rogers soon, as these leaked images of dummy devices reveal. The Pearl 9100 will evidently be offered in a dark metallic red, though other colors are likely to arrive later on as well.
Pearl 9100 to cost $450 at Bell, Rogers in Canada
The BlackBerry Pearl 9100, a version of the Pearl 9105, is due to launch soon at Canada's largest carriers according to leaked inventory screenshots. Screens from Bell and Solo as well as Rogers and Fido inventories also reveal pricing for the handset, at $450 CAD (about $451), without any subsidies.
Pearl 9105 to break traddition with T9 keypad?
The often rumored BlackBerry 9100 is said to be geting an extra model that will be equipped with a traditional T9-style keypad rather than the hardware QWERTY keyboards the devices are known for best. To be called the 9105, there is even a mockup of the handset from the
origin of the news, bbnews.pl. The 9105 is apparently due to appear on the European market, and the source maintains both the 9100 and 9105 will share the same version of the OS.
Carrier changing wireless Internet pricing
The Canadian carrier Fido is allegedly set to launch the BlackBerry Pearl 9100 handset on May 4th, according to an inventory screenshot posted on MobileSyrup. The leaked image indicates the device will be black, although earlier reports have yet to agree on the exact form of the housing and keyboard.
Supplier keyboard shows new layout
RIM may be dropping the SureType keyboard for the upcoming Pearl 9100 handset, according to the BlackBerry supplier Truesupplier. Images of an alleged Pearl 9100 keyboard, posted on BGR, show a full QWERTY layout downsized from the larger BlackBerries.
T-Mobile to replace faulty BlackBerry trackballs
T-Mobile will reportedly soon begin offering a goodwill gesture to those who bought BlackBerry Pearl 8100/8120 and Curve 8320 handsets from the provider and are having issues with the trackball. At its retail stores, T-Mobile will replace the faulty trackballs free of charge. Whether or not T-Mobile has any help from RIM on the replacements is unknown.
Pearl 9100 sleeker, faster
RIM's long anticipated overhaul of its most affordable BlackBerry is coming soon, a leak shows today. Likely to be called the Pearl 9100 when it's finished, the new model has a sleeker design reminiscent of the Storm2 but with an optical trackpad like newer BlackBerries. The Pearl's familiar SureType keyboard is still present in the CrackBerry shots, but the new model should also add 3G for the first time to those on GSM networks.
BBerry Curve 9300 Leak
RIM's 3G adaptation of the BlackBerry Curve 8900 will represent more than a minor change if a leak through BGR is authentic. Nicknamed Gemini, the Curve 9300 would reportedly be stylistically similar to the 8900 but come with a larger screen with a higher resolution than the 480x360 used today. It would also have a faster processor and is likely to keep both the GPS and Wi-Fi in addition to tri-band 3G for access on AT&T, Rogers and many world carriers.
CDMA Pearl Flip Rumor
RIM's BlackBerry Pearl Flip could be available in a version for CDMA networks as early as next month. Alleged sources of BlackBerrySync today claim the previously GSM-only clamshell will be launched on CDMA as the Pearl Flip 8230 and would debut first on Canadian provider Telus as early as February with a "very reasonable" price as well as the same black and pink colors as the phone only available through Rogers in Canada and T-Mobile in the US.
Fido BlackBerry Leak Again
Rogers' sub-label Fido may carry BlackBerries after all, a new leak to BGR indicates. Multiple Fido staffers now say the provider is about to start training for sales and support this week and thus that a formal launch is a matter of weeks away. The tips also suggest the carrier will just begin service with now two years old, original Pearl 8100 and will likely omit the Pearl Flip 8220 for the initial debut, though this first model is discontinued and might both sell out quickly and require an OS upgrade.
RIM Fold SureType Patent
RIM on Christmas published a patent filing that hints at an attempt to overcome some of the size limitations of the BlackBerry Pearl and Pearl Flip. Describing the design as an "appearance adaptable" keypad, the method would have the appearance of a normal BlackBerry number pad but contain hinged sections that fold out past the normal dimensions of the phone to provide a larger SureType keyboard with two letters each.
Rogers Fido Roadmap 2009
An initial 2009 roadmap for phones at Canadian provider Rogers and its sub-label Fido has leaked and provided clues not only to devices coming to the West for the first time but a new BlackBerry device. A new Pearl Flip will represent a quick turnaround for RIM and will add HSPA-based 3G for faster Internet access; it will also be the first non-QWERTY phone from the company to have both GPS and Wi-Fi at the same time. The new Flip is due sometime in the first half of 2009 and will be available only through Rogers.
Rogers Fido BBerry Leaks
Rogers' plans for its BlackBerry lineup will include both an aggressive launch of the Curve 8900 and an expansion of the smartphones to its budget brand Fido, tips from BGR suggest. The Canadian provider should get the 2G-only but GPS and Wi-Fi equipped device in January and will reportedly price it substantially under the Bold, offering it at $150 on a three-year plan with both voice and data.
iPhone 3G tops AdMob
Apple's second-wave push for the iPhone has already made it the most popular phone on the web, a study of October data from AdMob indicates. The mobile ad provider notes that total worldwide iPhone share for ad requests nearly doubled from 2.1 percent in September to 4.1 percent the following month, bringing it from fourth place to first. The previous leader, Motorola's RAZR V3, has held on to its second place spot but dropped substantially from 4.1 percent to 3.4 percent of all requests to AdMob.
Solo Mobile adds choices
Canadian wireless provider Solo Mobile on Thursday announced it is introducing four new voice plans and two new handsets to its line-up. The Bell sub-brand enhanced its Unbeatable and Solo in the City plans, giving users what it says is better value. It now waives the controversial System Access Fees and emergency 911 charges to new subscribers who sign up for a two-year contract. This represents a savings of about $8 CAD (about $6.75) per month.
RIM Prepaid BBerry Leak
A leak today stemming from BGR suggests Research in Motion is launching a major effort to offer prepaid BlackBerry phones and the relevant data service. Already in use by Indonesia, the company is pitching a prepaid BlackBerry server to carriers in North America and elsewhere to serve customers who would want the push e-mail and other smartphone level services but for customers who either only use service very occasionally, are cash-limited or simply don't want to supply the private information for a regular subscription.
RAZR Still Outsells iPhone
Despite four years on the market, Motorola's RAZR V3 is still the best-selling cellphone in the US, the NPD Group says. While exact market share isn't published, the researchers put the clamshell design above the second-place iPhone 3G as well as the BlackBerry Curve, LG Chocolate and BlackBerry Pearl in the top five. The RAZR earns its position primarily through its sheer availability, as the device sells through nearly all major and minor carriers in the US and is often available for free or at a low price on a contract.
iPhone 3G Tops BBerry
The iPhone 3G's launch propelled Apple to the top of the US smartphone market in the summer and near the peak of the smartphone ranks in the US, according to NPD Group data. The phone outsold the BlackBerry Curve, BlackBerry Pearl and Palm Centro in the June through August window and used the spike generated by the launch to give all iPhones about 17 percent of the US smartphone business from January through August, or more than one in six smartphones sold in the country.
Best Buy leaks phone dates
Some leaked screenshots of Best Buy‘s inventory system reveal the ship dates for a few upcoming smartphones, including an unlocked Palm Treo Pro, T-Mobile BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220 in red and the T-Mobile G1. All three are listed as arriving in Best Buy stores as of October 26, though the T-Mobile G1 will apparently not be sold by the electronics retailer until November 16th.
RIM Summer 08 Results
Research in Motion today reported one of its better quarters in memory with earnings of $495.5 million over its summer quarter, which ended in August. The figure is a significant 72 percent spike versus the same three-month timeframe a year earlier and is credited primarily to the momentum from the company's expansion into mainstream-oriented phones, which included early sales of the BlackBerry Bold.
TMobile Blackberry Flip
T-Mobile has launched a pre-registration page on its website for the BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220. WiFi connectivity allows internet access and even phone calls to be made without connecting to the service provider cell towers. A 2MP camera with flash also records video. Content can be added using an external microSD card slot or transferred from iTunes using Media Sync.
T-Mobile to get Kickstart
The upcoming BlackBerry Kickstart, believed to be named the Pearl 8220 when it does arrive, will be sold exclusively by cellphone provide T-Mobile for three months, today's report suggests. T-Mobile will spend tens of millions in TV, radio and Internet advertising campaigns that kick off in mid September to make the public aware of this fact.
VZW BlackBerries in Pink
Verizon has joined T-Mobile's announcements earlier in the week with news of its own special colors for its BlackBerry smartphones. Both the Curve 8330 and the Pearl 8130 now come in pink versus the conservative silver that was the only previous choice. The extra hue is pitched at girls going to college in the fall who may want a fashion-savvy device but also a smartphone they can use to keep track of classwork.
BBerry Kickstart now Pearl
RIM has given the Kickstart a more definitive name and could launch it well ahead of its Javelin, a pair of leaks suggest today. A Rogers product sheet obtained by BlackBerry Cool now appears to confirm the use of Kickstart as only a codename and that the final phone will ship as the Pearl 8220, positioning it as a replacement for the Pearl 8100 series. The tip also confirms support for Rogers' Talkspot Wi-Fi calling and also hints at a lower price of $50 with a three-year plan when the device ships in September for the Canadian carrier.
BlackBerry Media Sync
Research in Motion hoped to gain ground among media smartphones today with the official launch of BlackBerry Media Sync. Announced alongside the Bold, the software gives owners of current-generation BlackBerries the option to sync some or all of their iTunes libraries for playback on the phone, including playlists. Phone owners can also block out part of the phone's storage space to set it aside for work, photos, and other content.
BBerry 8120 at Rogers
Rogers Wireless today kicked off the launch of both its version of the BlackBerry Pearl 8120 and a service to match. The candybar smartphone adds Wi-Fi to the original formula and on Rogers is used for the company's newly formalized Home Calling Zone VoIP service. Based on Unlicensed Mobile Access (UMA) like T-Mobile's HotSpot@Home in the US, the feature lets users make calls from a Wi-Fi access point with the added ability to bridge calls: a phone conversation starting from either the cellular network or a Wi-Fi spot will hop to the other network without disrupting the call.
BlackBerry Storm Rumor
Research in Motion has likely already picked out the name for its touchscreen BlackBerry, say those investigating the company's web practices. The site address BlackBerryStorm.com has already been registered by a confidential party as of late 2007 and has since by followed by registrations of several international and mobile domains, suggesting an active attempt by RIM to secure the names before an official launch.
iPhone and BBerry Split
In spite of attempts to blur distinctions, BlackBerry and iPhone owners are still fundamentally opposed when it comes to what they like about their phones, according to new research from ChangeWave. Research in Motion's attempts to focus on media functions with the Curve and Pearl have still resulted in most customers preferring the phones for e-mail, with 56 percent of users citing BlackBerry line's signature "push" mail as their primary desire. Nearly all other features were distant concerns, with ease of use, the keyboard, and size all cited by less than 10 percent of the responding group.
BBerry Pearl 8110 at ATT
AT&T today became the first American provider to pick up the BlackBerry Pearl 8110, RIM's first version of its narrow phone design to supply built-in GPS navigation on a GSM network. Like the 8130 for CDMA networks, the 8110 provides live position updates in real time; in AT&T's version, the new Pearl is targeted at the TeleNav-based AT&T Navigator service and uses the feature to supply driving directions without permanent map downloads. The upgraded handset is also the first from AT&T to run a custom Yellow Pages app for finding and using contact information.
US Smartphone Shortage
Three of the most dominant smartphone makers in the US are all suffering from low supply of their devices at the same time, Morgan Keegan analyst Tavis McCourt says in a new investor's note. In addition to the still ongoing iPhone shortage, McCourt also observes that Research in Motion's standard BlackBerry Pearl has not been reliably available at retail at AT&T since March and may only begin to offer the Pearl 8120 to home users by April 24th at the earliest.
AT&T Rebate Sheet 8110
A rebate sheet from AT&T for the spring retail season seems to have leaked on the Internet on Thursday, revealing that the cellular carrier will replace the Pearl 8100 with the new 8110. Buyers who opt for this phone will be eligible for a $50 rebate card from AT&T. Furthermore, the form indicates the phones must be purchased before May 11, meaning the new Pearl should hit shelves well before then. The other new phone to AT&T on the form is the Pantech C520, the Breeze, with a $30 rebate.
Needham on RIM and Palm
Both Palm and the BlackBerry's creator, Research in Motion, are likely to feel a continued squeeze on their bottom lines as a result of the iPhone, according to separate investment notes from Needham & Co. The financial researchers note that both smartphone producers are most likely to feel added pressure because of the emergence of the consumer smartphone market, which doesn't share the same values as the business market. Services such as near-instant "push" e-mail are only a small factor for most home users, according to analyst Charlie Wolf. While that feature has helped the BlackBerry cement its position in the workplace, most home users are equally concerned with media playback as well as web access.
Rogers Wi-Fi Calling Rumor
Rogers may offer its own take on a Wi-Fi calling solution in the near future, say multiple tips sent to Crackberry. The service would be known as Rogers Home Calling Zone and would replicate many of the features found in services such as T-Mobile's HotSpot@Home; devices that support Unlicensed Mobile Access (UMA) would be used to offer unlimited calling from any Wi-Fi access point and could seamlessly bridge to the cellular phone network and back to avoid interrupting calls.
BBerry 8120 at T-Mobile
T-Mobile on Tuesday morning became the second carrier in North America after AT&T to carry the BlackBerry Pearl 8120. In its new trim, the phone's distinctive Wi-Fi is used to support T-Mobile's HotSpot@Home and potentially saves money on calling; users can place calls for free from any Wi-Fi hotspot, including any official T-Mobile location. The phone adds all the improvements that come along with the upgraded Pearl, including the 2-megapixel camera, externally accessible microSDHC card slot, a full-size headphone jack, and better construction.
Pearl 8120 at AT&T
Marking the addition of one of the few Wi-Fi equipped home smartphones in its lineup, AT&T today released the BlackBerry Pearl 8120. Based on the same updated Pearl shape as the 8130 on sale at Sprint and Verizon, the 8120 adds 802.11g Wi-Fi that supplies much faster Internet access than the phone's usual EDGE service whenever the phone is within range of a hotspot; unlike the Curve 8320 at T-Mobile, however, the new AT&T Pearl lacks support for automatically bridged VoIP calls.
Puretracks, with labels Universal, Sony BMG, Warner, EMI, and various independents under its belt, is offering a new DRM-free mobile music store and service for BlackBerry smartphones from Research In Motion (RIM). As the latest company to take a stab at Apple's music download dominance, the new music service competes directly with Apple's WiFi iTunes store for the iPhone and iPod Touch and will work with the BlackBerry Pearl, BlackBerry Curve and BlackBerry 8800 series smartphones. Using compressed DRM-free AAC/AAC+ file formats, Puretracks Mobile Edition will be unveiled March 12 at the South By Southwest (SXSW) event in Austin, Texas. A full version of the mobile music service is expected to launch at CTIA Wireless April 1.
BB Pearl 8130 With Alltel
Alltel has begun shipping its version of the BlackBerry Pearl 8130, the first CDMA-capable Pearl. The candybar design has all the features of the full version including true GPS, which can be used either through Resarch in Motion's own BlackBerry Maps feature or through a subscription to a service like TeleNav. Unlike Sprint or Verizon models, though, its music can be sideloaded through a custom program dubbed Jump Music instead of Windows Media Player or manually copying files, helping to justify the phone's microSDHC slot and cards over 8GB.