RIM launches Bold new BlackBerry

BlackBerry Bold 9700 will be sold alongside, rather than replace, the Bold 9000

Research In Motion (RIM) today launched the latest flagship BlackBerry smartphone in Australia, the Bold 9700.

The second BlackBerry Bold to be released (following on from the Bold 9000 smartphone), the Bold 9700 offers an upgraded camera, a more compact design and the optical trackpad first seen on the entry-level BlackBerry Curve 8520 smartphone.

The 3G-capable smartphone also features built-in Wi-Fi, a 3.5mm headphone jack and a microSD card slot that supports cards of up to 2GB. The BlackBerry Bold 9700 ships with the latest version of the BlackBerry OS, 5.0.

"The original BlackBerry Bold was a great achievement and a significant success for RIM in the Australian and New Zealand market. We are now pleased to be bringing the new BlackBerry Bold 9700 to Australia and New Zealand and we believe that customers will be even more impressed with its new and exciting features, exceptional performance and light and optimised design," said Adele Beachley, managing director of RIM Australia and New Zealand.

At the launch RIM confirmed the new BlackBerry Bold 9700 will be sold alongside the current BlackBerry Bold 9000.

RIM didn't reveal pricing or carrier details for the BlackBerry Bold 9700, but it's expected to be available in late November. All four major Australian carriers (Telstra, Optus, Vodafone and 3 Mobile) are believed to be offering the new smartphone, though official details are yet to be confirmed.