The BlackBerry Curve 8520 is an introductory BlackBerry for those just entering the smartphone market. With Airtel, RIM have introduced the device to India, which seems to be a good demographic for the device.
Something that is unique about the launch is that the device is being offered on prepaid. This has been a strategy of RIM and developing markets for a while now. Emerging markets tend to favor the prepaid system, due to the fact that contracts are more difficult to manage given the credit systems required. The downside of a prepaid system is that it inevitably makes the device more expensive. At Rs. 15,990, the Curve 8520 is selling for roughly $334.87 USD.
PRESS RELEASE: New Delhi – Airtel, Asia’s leading integrated telecom services provider and Research In Motion (RIM) (Nasdaq: RIMM; TSX: RIM), a world leader in wireless innovation, today launched the BlackBerry® Curve™ 8520, a slim, new addition to the BlackBerry Curve series of smartphones that brings ease-of-use to email, messaging, social networking, music and entertainment for people on the go. Offered at the attractive price of Rs.15,990, the new BlackBerry Curve 8520 will be available nationally from Airtel’s authorised outlets through Bharti Teletech Limited across India on August 7th.
Airtel is a frontrunner in bringing innovative, cutting edge technology to its 100 million-plus customers and will be the first provider in India to launch the BlackBerry Curve 8520 smartphone. Airtel’s consumer research and analysis indicates that there is a large untapped segment of people in India who would like to stay connected using wireless email. The combination of a new prepaid BlackBerry® service plan from Airtel, at the affordable monthly rate of Rs.299, with the new handset’s user-friendly design and very approachable price point at Rs.15,990, represents an aggressive move to reach that untapped segment.
“It has been our commitment to introduce innovative and cutting edge technology to our users and we are delighted to be the first to introduce the new BlackBerry Curve 8520 smartphone to all Airtel users at an aggressive price of Rs 15,990,” said Raghunath Mandava, Chief Marketing Officer, Mobile Services, Airtel. “We believe that the BlackBerry Curve 8520 will appeal to young professionals, students and a broad spectrum of retail customers who want the exceptional mobile experience for messaging, social networking, email, music and entertainment that you get from a BlackBerry smartphone.”
The BlackBerry Curve 8520 is an incredibly approachable, feature-rich smartphone. It introduces an innovative touch-sensitive trackpad, which makes scrolling and selection smooth and easy for a great navigation experience. It is also the first BlackBerry smartphone to feature dedicated media keys, which are smoothly integrated along the top of the handset giving customers an easy, convenient way to control their music and videos.
In addition to providing the industry’s leading mobile solution for email, messaging (IM, SMS, MMS) and social networking and an easy-to-use, full-QWERTY keyboard for comfortable, accurate typing, the BlackBerry Curve 8520 comes with powerful multimedia features, useful applications to help users stay organized and productive, full HTML browsing and seamless Wi-Fi® support.
“RIM is delighted to introduce the new BlackBerry Curve 8520 in India with Airtel. With its combination of industry-leading messaging capabilities, consumer-friendly features and Airtel’s aggressive marketing support, we are confident that the new BlackBerry Curve 8520 will help appeal to a much wider audience of customers in India,” said Frenny Bawa, Vice President, India, Research In Motion.
The BlackBerry Curve 8520 smartphone from Airtel measures 109 mm x 60 mm x 13.90 mm (L x W x D) and weighs only 106 grams (including battery). It comes packed with features including:
* Advanced media player for music, pictures and videos, with dedicated media keys (Play / Pause / Mute, Back and Forward) conveniently integrated across the top of the smartphone for a seamless look, plus a 3.5 mm stereo headset jack and BlackBerry® Media Sync, which makes it easy to quickly synch music from iTunes® and Windows Media® Player with the smartphone*
* Innovative trackpad for easy navigation, enables easy, touch-sensitive scrolling and depresses to make a selection
* 256MB Flash memory and a 512Mhz next generation processor for enhanced performance
* Expandable memory via hot swappable microSD/SDHC memory card slot, supporting cards of up to 16 GB today and expected to support next generation 32GB cards when available
* Easy mobile access to instant messaging and social networking services like Facebook®, MySpace, Flickr®, Windows Live Messenger™ and BlackBerry® Messenger
* Bright, large (2.46” inch), high resolution color display (supports over 65,000 colors)
* Digital camera with zoom and video recording (note: video recording requires microSD memory card, which may be sold separately)
* Full HTML web browser with support for online streaming video (RTSP)
* Built-in Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g)
* Quad-band EDGE for global connectivity
* Premium phone features including voice activated dialling and Bluetooth® (2.0) support for hands-free use with headsets, car kits, stereo headsets and other Bluetooth peripherals
* BlackBerry® Internet Service support, which allows users to access up to 10 supported personal and corporate email accounts, including most popular ISP email accounts
* BlackBerry® Enterprise Server support, which provides corporate customers with advanced security and IT administration features within IBM® Lotus® Domino®, Microsoft® Exchange and Novell® GroupWise® environments
* Rechargeable/removable 1150 mAhr battery for up to 4.5 hours of talk time and 17 days of standby time
* Airtel customers can sms ‘BB’ to 543210 to register to purchase the BlackBerry Curve 8520 and to get more information about the plans offered with the smartphone.