RIM Phones Reasserts Its Handheld Market

RIM phones now have the first-ever flip BlackBerry that comes loaded with multimedia features. Some features include video and music player and a 2-megapixel camera with flash.

The BlackBerry Pearl 8220 smartphone also has a Web browser and an abridged keyboard. The handset device can also be turned on its side for a widescreen view.

“Seventy percent of the mobile phone users in the United States use a flip,” RIM co-CEO Jim Balsillie said in an interview. “There’s never been a smartphone or a BlackBerry option for that.”

The new RIM phone will be available later this year in the United States. T-Mobile will be the exclusive launch carrier. No pricing details were immediately available.

The first Pearl model was launched in September 2006 which earned great reviews and a strong gain in sales. The mobile handset also allowed RIM to broaden its market beyond its mainstream of corporate executives and other professionals who use the BlackBerry to send work e-mail securely.

Other features include camera and video recording, Wi-Fi and video streaming and a widescreen for mobile gaming. It also supports instant messaging and the ability to add pictures to your online photo collections.