Research in Motion (RIM), makers of the BlackBerry smartphone range has announced the BlackBerry Pearl 8220 Flip - a flip version of its successful Pearl 8220, the first BlackBerry to feature a clam-shell design.

Measuring 99x229x18mm, the glossy black and chrome BlackBerry Pearl 8220 Flip will initially be available only in the US. RIM has not announced a launch date for the quad-band/Edge handset in the UK, although it assures us that Brits will eventually be able to get their hands on the phone.

The BlackBerry Pearl 8220 Flip features an external colour display that allows users to preview incoming emails, text messages and phone calls without opening the handset as well as a 240 x 320 internal colour LCD display, which will display video content in widescreen format when the handset is rotated.

A qwerty keyboard is ideal for surfing the web, sending and receiving emails on up to 10 different accounts and also texting. The BlackBerry Pearl 8220 Flip also benefits from built-in Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g) and Bluetooth 2.0 connectivity.

The Blackberry Pearl 8220 flip comes bundled with DataViz Documents to Go software, which allows users to Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint files on the handset as well as the BlackBerry Media Sync application that makes it easy to sync the device with Apple's iTunes.

Other multimedia features available on the BlackBerry Pearl 8220 Flip include an MP3 player with graphic equaliser featuring 11 preset filters and a 2Mp camera with flash and video capture functionality.

The phone supports MicroSD cards up to 16GB and benefits from a USB 2.0 port. Blackberry claims the device offers four hours talk time and over 14 days standby time.


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