Hot on the heels of its BlackBerry7 devices announced earlier this month, RIM now goes for the mass market with a collection of new Curve keyboard-toting phones.
Full Steam Ahead
The BlackBerry maker is addressing concerns of its dwindling market share with some gusto. A few weeks ago, we saw the release of the first BB7 devices. While they might grab all the headlines, it is in the mass market area where the majority of mobile sales are to be found. So, the newly announced Curve models offer BlackBerry OS7 and a range of features for those who don't need a luxury item for a phone.
Coded the 9350, 9360 and 9370, these devices don't offer the luxury of a touchscreen (although a future model may well add one), and only the higher model features 1GB of RAM (the others settling for 512MB). But, across this range, you get a mid-level 800MHz processor, NFC built-in and a 5-megapixel camera. The 9350 is the GSM model, the '60 is for CDMA networks while the '70 will play anywhere for those who travel widely.
The Curve captures the essence of the recent Bold, but is less expensive
Making the Market
You can check out the specifications on the RIM site, but it is becoming apparent that the company is going for a full assault on the market with BB7-enabled phones in all areas. This is something Apple can't match (unless it does release a budget iPhone 4 next month) and Google has trouble with its swamp of similar models from the many Android makers.
So, while BlackBerry might never bounce back to its former glory, it is making all the right moves in across the mobile market -- we just have to wait and see how the buying public reacts. Of course, that leaves the question of what to do with the PlayBook tablet. But RIM is unlikely to follow HP's axing of its device, as the PlayBook is more of a core product to RIM and one that can be tweaked and tailored over time.