With early reviews of the BlackBerry Torch tepid at best, the price of the smartphone has been halved in a special offer from Amazon.com. With a two-year contract from AT&T, the online retailer is now offloading Torch handsets for just $99.99 -- half of the competitive $199 price point that RIM introduced it with less than a week ago. With that in mind, here are 10 fast facts about the Torch for CIOs to consider.
Still, analysts say that all is not yet lost for BlackBerry parent Research in Motion (RIM), the company long considered the only name in enterprise-class mobile devices. Analyst Ken Hyers, with Technology Business Research, has said that in attempting to woo enterprise and consumer customers alike, design had been a major weak point for RIM. While Hyers doesn't believe RIM is in danger of losing its relevance on the strength of their Email product, he does view the Canadian company as "giving up sales opportunities" by not putting more emphasis on design.
RIM executives may disagree, noting that that Torch is the first BlackBerry to combine a multi-touch display with the RIM keypad, as well as the first to run the revamped BlackBerry 6 operating system. The OS cleans up the previously overwhelming BlackBerry homepage, includes a universal search feature and offers a more seamless transition between applications. RIM executives have described it as "fresh, but familiar" -- aka, an improved but not confusing experience for the RIM faithful, but also one, with its upped cool factor, that's positioned to compete with mainstream smartphones.
For more, read the full eWeek article, Amazon Slashes BlackBerry Torch 9800 Price to $99.