After a long wait, Research In Motion's first sliding device is now official. On Tuesday, the handset vendor announced the upcoming launch of its BlackBerry Torch 9800, which runs under the company's new BlackBerry 6 operating system and which is set to be put on sale in the US via AT&T come August 12th. The first BlackBerry handset to put together a touchscreen display and a QWERTY keyboard is roughly one week away from landing on shelves, while offering users the possibility to choose the manner in which they want to type messages, navigate the Internet or communicate with friends.
“This is one of the most significant launches in RIM’s history and we are proud to introduce the new BlackBerry Torch and BlackBerry 6
together with AT&T,” said Mike Lazaridis, president and co-ceo, Research In Motion. “With a new user interface, new browser and new handset design, the highly anticipated BlackBerry Torch and BlackBerry 6 deliver integrated and uncompromising capabilities for consumers and business professionals that preserve the industry-leading strengths of the BlackBerry platform while adding exciting new dimensions.”
The specifications list of the new device
includes a 3.2-inch capacitive touchscreen display that boasts a 360 x 480 pixel resolution, a 35 key full QWERTY backlit slide-out keyboard, a 624 Mhz processor, 512 MB of Flash memory, Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g/n) and Bluetooth 2.1 connectivity, 3.5mm headset jack, built-in GPS receiver, Tri-band HSDPA (3G) and quad-band EDGE support, a 1300 mAhr battery that can offer up to 5.8 hours of talk time on 3G networks, speakerphone, and voice activated dialing.
The new BlackBerry Torch comes with 4 GB of built-in memory, complemented by a microSD/SDHD memory card slot that offers support for up to 32 GB of additional storage space (a 4GB card included in the package). The handset
measures 4.4 (5.8 open) x 2.4 x .57 inches and weighs in at 5.68 ounces. The new device also comes with with RIM’s popular messaging solutions, complemented by AT&T’s messaging features, as well as with the BlackBerry App World pre-installed. The app portal includes support for carrier billing for AT&T. The BlackBerry Torch 9800
smartphone is set to become available for purchase in the United States on August 12th, exclusively on AT&T's airwaves. The handset should be put on sale via the carrier' stores, on its website, and via Best Buy, Wal-Mart and RadioShack stores. The phone sports a price tag of $199.99 upon the signing of a 2-year service agreement on a qualifying plan. Additional details on this are available on AT&T's website here