RIM, Verizon Wireless and Vodafone Group have announced the launch of the long-awaited BlackBerry Storm smartphone, which includes an unique touch screen and cutting-edge multimedia capabilities, aiming to deliver an ultimate smartphone experience.

“We are proud to introduce the first touch-screen based BlackBerry smartphone together with Verizon Wireless and Vodafone,” said Mike Lazaridis, president and co-chief executive officer at RIM. “The BlackBerry Storm is a revolutionary touch-screen smartphone that meets both the communications and multimedia needs of customers and solves the longstanding problem associated with typing on traditional touch-screens. Consumers and business customers alike will appreciate this unique combination of a large and vibrant screen with a truly tactile touch interface.”

Impressive Highlights Of BlackBerry Storm:

  • High resolution (480×360 pixel) 3.25-inch diagonal TFT LCD display, supporting over 65,000 colors
  • Innovative “clickable” touch-screen that actually depresses ever so slightly when the screen is pressed (supports for multi-touches, taps, slides and other touch-screen gestures)
  • 3.2 megapixel camera with variable zoom, auto focus and powerful flash that also provides continuous lighting when recording video
  • Built-in GPS (Global Positioning System) supports location-based applications and services, as well as geotagging of photos
  • BlackBerry Internet Service, BlackBerry Unite!, BlackBerry Professional Software and BlackBerry Enterprise Server support
  • Preloaded DataViz Documents to Go allows users to edit Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint files directly on the phone
  • Full HTML high-performance browser and built-in RSS support
  • 1GB integrated memory storage, expandable with external microSD/SDHD card slot (supports up to 16GB)
  • Media player that can play movies smoothly in full screen mode, display pictures and slideshows quickly and manage an entire music collection; playlists can be created directly on the handset and there’s an equalizer with 11 preset filters – including “Lounge,” “Jazz” and “Hip Hop” – for customized audio ranges when using wired headphones or external speakers
  • Standard 3.5 mm stereo headset jack supporting for Bluetooth stereo audio profile (A2DP/AVRCP) and dedicated volume controls
  • Ambient light sensor that automatically adjusts backlighting for ideal screen viewing and built-in accelerometer, allowing customers to view applications in either portrait or landscape mode by simply rotating the handset (RIM’s SureType keyboard layout is available in portrait mode, while full QWERTY keyboard layout is available in landscape mode)
  • Removable and rechargeable 1400 mAhr battery supporting approximately 6 hours of talk time on 3G networks and 15 days of standby time

“The BlackBerry Storm offers our customers more ways to stay connected to both their personal and professional lives – whether in their communities or around the globe,” said Mike Lanman, vice president and chief marketing officer of Verizon Wireless. “The BlackBerry Storm combines the reliability of our 3G network with the dependability and network efficiency of the BlackBerry platform to deliver our customers the ultimate wireless experience – all in one of the coolest smartphones available on the market today.”

According to the release, “The BlackBerry Storm is a top-of-the-line 3G mobile phone with premium features and global connectivity. In the U.S., the BlackBerry Storm 9530 gives Verizon Wireless customers 3G EV-DO Rev. A/CDMA technology – and (2100Mhz) UMTS/HSPA and quad-band EDGE/GPRS/GSM for global use. The BlackBerry Storm 9500 from Vodafone supports (2100Mhz) UMTS/HSPA and quad-band EDGE/GPRS/GSM networks.”

“We are delighted to bring the power of the purpose built BlackBerry Storm, directly into the hands of consumer and business customers,” said Frank H. Rovekamp, global chief marketing officer, Vodafone Group. “With its unique clickable touch-screen, giving access to all the desirable multi-media features and services such as browsing, music and video, turn-by-turn satellite navigation, messaging and social networking, and BlackBerry’s mobile heritage and strong business reputation, the BlackBerry Storm is being brought by Vodafone into the consumer world. With Vodafone’s ultra high-speed, reliable mobile network and this exclusive and exciting new smartphone, there has never been a better time to be with Vodafone.”

The new BlackBerry Storm smartphone which measures 110 x 60 x 6.3mm is expected to be available later this fall, exclusively to Verizon Wireless customers in US and Vodafone customers in Europe, India, Australia and New Zealand, but no price has been announced yet.