Friday, February 16, 2007

New Blackberry 8800: Thumbwheel out, Trackball In

MSNBC's Gary Krakow reviews the new 8800, which is thinner and more powerful than ever:
It was only a matter of time. When the Research in Motion people came to show me a Pearl a few months ago — they also had a prototype of another phone in its very early stages.

That prototype would borrow some of the innovations in the Pearl and add them to larger phone format. You know which ones I'm talking about —the with full keyboards. The new handset was thinner and lighter than previous “large” bristling with new features.

They did a lot of work to make their new model but apparently didn't spend much time coming up with a name. They called it the Blackberry 8800.

For all you “CrackBerry” addicts I must warn you at the outset that the 8800 is different from any other . It’s the first one without a thumbwheel. The experts at RIM, seeing the success of the Pearl and its little trackball, decided that their new model didn’t need an ancient-style navigation device. Don’t worry; you’ll get used to the new system within an hour.

The 8800 is a quad-band world phone. It runs on the 850/900/1800 and 1900 MHz GSM/GPRS and EDGE networks. In the United States, the 8800 will be first be sold by Cingular Wireless. The big, bright color screen has a built-in light sensor which adjusts the brightness of the screen, keyboard and trackball depending on your surroundings.