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3GSM: RIM Blackberry 8800 Launched

At the all-you-can-eat phone buffet that is the 3GSM mobile conference in Barcelona, Research in Motion has launched its latest Crackberry offering, the 8800; which shows up as being the thinnest Blackberry yet, at a mere 0.55" (14mm) thin.

Based on its Pearl predecessor the 8800 is RIM's first full-QWERTY handset to be based on a trackball-centric design. It sports a 320 x 240 pixel screen, and the phone has in-built light sensors to automatically detect correct screen and trackball back-lighting; and memory can be expanded with the use of MicroSD.

It's what's under the hood that really matters, though, and the Blackberry 8800 doesn't dissapoint, coming with quad-band GSM / GPRS and EDGE support, as well as built-in Bluetooth (no surprise) and GPS support. The GPS support is exciting as it makes the 8800 compatible to many GPS services out of the box, including RIM's own mapping software; and it helps to make the 8800 an "all around package."

One can, for example, enter an address from the Blackberry address book into the mapping software, get a route planned and then use the 8800 to guide you to your destination. Fun, no?

The "high capacity" battery promises five hours talk time and up to 22 days of standby operation. Well, we'll see...

The Crackberry 8800 will be available later in the month through Cingular / AT&T in the US, though no pricing has yet been announced.