Handsets like the Curve and Pearl have ensured that Research In Motion’s BlackBerry isn’t just seen as a corporate email device any more. But it seems RIM has ambitions to push even more into the consumer space, by launching a touchscreen BlackBerry to go head-to-head with Apple’s iPhone.
Analysts are already describing the potential 9000-series as “the future of the BlackBerry franchise”, and although it’s slated to have the push-email that made RIM’s reputation, it’ll also have more of a focus on multimedia features.
I’m not so sure it’s a good idea, to be honest. Push-email is arguably BlackBerry’s strong point, yet as iPhone owners know, a touchscreen isn’t ideal for heavy email use. And if RIM wants to turn BlackBerry into a pure consumer brand, it’ll face stiff competition not just from Apple, but from the traditional mobile manufacturers like Nokia, Sony Ericsson, Samsung and LG too.
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