CNET is reporting that in conversation with RIM CEO Mike Lazaridis, he shed some light on the imminent multimedia-focused BlackBerry we discussed yesterday. Apparently, it will be the first in a line of “Prosumer” and “Lifestyle” focused BlackBerrys. These new BlackBerrys will feature improved multimedia performance (we’ve gotten word from our sources that this means stereo sound, better frames per second and possible better video resolution), expandable memory, Wi-Fi, integrated GPS and a smaller, lighter design. Lazaridis hinted at a built-in camera, but would not confirm.
Interestingly, Lazaridis also commented on CNET’s earlier reports that the BlackBerry 8700 was a weak multimedia device. Lazaridis revealed that the 8700’s Intel PCA901 processor was more than capable of providing better audio and video, but had been held in check to ensure “stability and reliability.” Apparently, v4.2 of the BlackBerry OS will unlock these dormant features and dramatically increase audio/video performance on Intel-based BlackBerrys (of which the 8700 is currently the only one).
These statements might lead one to believe that RIM’s upcoming 8707 BlackBerry could be the first of their new multimedia devices. However, it has been more or less confirmed by RIM officials that the 8707 will only differ from its cousin in terms of providing UMTS 3G support.
Although people have known about an upcoming multimedia BlackBerry for awhile, this is obviously big-time news. Please post a comment on the new ‘confirmed’ features and let us know what you like, and maybe what you think is being left out.