Storm Brewing for Verizon, Vodafone

Verizon and Vodafone are the first operators to carry the new BlackBerry Storm 3G touch-screen smartphone from RIM

Michelle Donegan, Contributing Editor, Light Reading

October 8, 2008

2 Min Read
Storm Brewing for Verizon, Vodafone

BlackBerry unveiled today its first touch-screen 3G phone that will be available exclusively from Vodafone Group plc (NYSE: VOD) and Verizon Wireless from next month, just in time for the holiday season.

The new BlackBerry Storm is RIM's answer to the 3G iPhone and comes hot on the heels of the 5800 XpressMusic phone that Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK) unveiled last week, which means that Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) is no longer alone in the smartphone stakes. (See RIM's Touching New BlackBerry Plans, 8 Killer iPhone 3G Alternatives, and Nokia CEO: Go Long! Get Open!)

Vodafone will offer the BlackBerry Storm, which has a "clickable" touchscreen, in Europe, India, Australia, and New Zealand, while Verizon will offer the device in the U.S. Neither operator has so far released pricing details. (See Vodafone Launches Storm.)

RIM, which is targeting consumers and business users with the Storm, claims to set itself apart from other touch-screen interfaces with its new "clickable" technology, which is said to respond like a physical keyboard and supports single-touch, multi-touch, and gestures for navigating among applications.

For Verizon, the BlackBerry Storm 9530 supports 3G EV-DO Rev. A and CDMA, as well as 2.1 GHz HSPA and quad-band EDGE/GPRS/GSM for use outside the U.S. For Vodafone, the Storm 9500 supports 2.1 GHz 3G HSPA as well as quad-band EDGE/GPRS/GSM.

The new touch-screen Storm is the latest in a series of recent "firsts" for the Canadian device maker: In August, RIM introduced its first 3G phone, the BlackBerry Bold, and last month, it unveiled its first flip phone, the Pearl Flip. (See Canada Gets Bold, RIM Reveals the Pearl Flip, and RIM's Four Aces.)

RIM also unveiled today new application developer tools for the Storm, Bold, and Pearl Flip, including a new Java developer environment.

— Michelle Donegan, European Editor, Unstrung

About the Author(s)

Michelle Donegan

Contributing Editor, Light Reading

Michelle Donegan is an independent technology writer who has covered the communications industry on both sides of the Pond for the past twenty years.

Her career began in Chicago in 1993 when Telephony magazine launched an international title, aptly named Global Telephony. Since then, she has upped sticks (as they say) to the UK and has written for various publications, including Communications Week International, Total Telecom, Light Reading, Telecom Titans and more.

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