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December - 2008 - issue > Tech Tracker
Will BlackBerry Toe the Flopped iPhone Line?
Eureka Bharali
Monday, December 1, 2008
The iPhone buzz reappears with the unveiling of the Canada based Research in Motion’s (RIM) iPhone killer BlackBerry Storm in the U.S.A. and the U.K.

But, in the competitive mood, the ‘Sleek and touch-screened’ Storm lost the revered trademark of a BlackBerry and ‘the physical keyboard’ may exclude the ardent mail buffs from opting for it. Moreover, like the iPhone, this smartphone will be priced anywhere between Rs.30, 000 to Rs.35, 000 in India, which will be a perfect wallet burner for the crowd, while in the U.S. and the U.K. it is priced at $199.

However, with analysts predicting a slowdown in the popularity of Apple’s iconic phone, the BlackBerry version gets an edge. Storm has recorded sales of over 100,000 units over the weekend, and the gadget gurus see it as a hit in the U.S., though introduced at the last quarter by Verizon in the U.S. and Vodafone in the U.K., with one phone being sold every 13 seconds. People banged into the stores but due to low inventories, which also crashed BlackBerry’s shares to eight percent, the demand outstripped supply.

As a competitor BlackBerry Storm steals the design and looks much like the iPhone 3G, though it’s 0.14 inches thicker and 22g heavier. To its disadvantage, the phone is not equipped with Wi-Fi support and its screen is a bit smaller, which is 3.2 inches compared to iPhone 3G’s 3.5 inches. But certain features of the Java based iPhone killer, like clickable screen, built-in tethering, the 3.2 mega pixel camera, and enterprise support bring a balance between business and causal use, though it is launched basically for enterprises. Analysts also see Storm score better than iPhone in terms of its Internet speed, the edit options, and screen resolution. But back at home, the picture is yet to come clear.

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