BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220 Gets Official, Coming to T-Mobile This Fall

The Bold has a little brother! The BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220 is coming to T-Mobile this fall, and it should prove attractive to clamshell fans who want easy access to e-mail and text messaging on the go. Although it lacks 3G, this sleek device packs Wi-Fi for fast surfing and better voice coverage when you’re on your home network or in a hotspot (assuming you sign up for the T-Mobile HotSpot@Home service). Here’s the full scoop on what’s sure to be one of the hottest smart phones for the holidays. At least on paper, RIM hasn’t added much bulk to the original Pearl to add a protective lid to the display. The Pearl Flip measures a relatively compact 3.9 x 1.9 x 0.7 inches and weighs 3.6 ounces, compared to 4.2 x 2 x 0.6 inches and 3.2 ounces for the BlackBerry Pearl 8120. And the lid isn’t just for protection. You can not only see who’s calling but also preview incoming e-mails and text messages using the 160 x 128-pixel external display. The internal screen is 320 x 240 pixels. Thanks to the Pearl Flip’s unique hinge design, RIM claims that this smart phone is easy to hold while typing. Plus, the SureType kebyoard is slightly bigger than what you’ll find on other Pearls, although the layout seems flatter but necessity. We’ll have to check out the tactile feedback. Like the BlackBerry Bold, the Pearl Flip sports the new version 4.6 operating system, which means you should expect to see the same slick interface, an enhanced Web browser, iTunes sync capability (via BlackBerry Media Sync), and a lot more goodness under the hood. Having DataViz Documents to Go on board means you’ll be able to view and edit Office attachments the way they are meant to be seen without loss of formatting. We’re also psyched to try out the RSS reader. Other key features include 128MB of flash memory, a 2-MP camera, external microSD card slot (up to 16GB), 3.5mm headphone jack, and 4 hours of talk time and 14 hours of standby time. Alas, there’s no built-in GPS. We don’t know the price yet but I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Pearl Flip 8220 go for $179, which would put it between the $149 Pearl 8120 and the $199 Curve. Check out another glamor shot below, and stay tuned for a video hands-on.

Mark Spoonauer
Mark Spoonauer
Responsible for the editorial vision for Laptop Mag and Tom's Guide, Mark Spoonauer has been Editor in Chief of LAPTOP since 2003 and has covered technology for nearly 15 years. Mark speaks at key tech industry events and makes regular media appearances on CNBC, Fox and CNN. Mark was previously reviews editor at Mobile Computing, and his work has appeared in Wired, Popular Science and Inc.
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  1. robert barrett Says:

    A piece of crap. No 3G and no GPS. TMobile better come out with a much better smartphone with 3G and GPS by February or I will not renew my service with them. When is that so called G1 coming out. Disappointed you guys did not ask TMobile while there and got stupid and giddy over this junk. Must be a bunch of crackberries there.

  2. Mark Spoonauer Says:

    We noted the lack of 3G and GPS but it’s still a solid phone and the data performance should be fine over EDGE. If you want 3G, GPS, and Wi-Fi get a Bold or wait for T-Mobile to offer something similar. My guess is that T-Mobile will offer a 3G BlackBerry once it’s 3G footprint is decent enough. Right now it’s limited.

  3. Allen Says:

    IDK why people brag soooo much about phones not having 3G and all this bull.
    i have the old iPhone and the safari works just fine w/out the 3G network.

    It is a pretty neat phone and I am switching back to T-Mobile.
    You have internet at home anyways, so get over it.

  4. keith Says:

    yeah, why expect fastest speeds when you pay over $100 a month. we should just learn to accept sluggish response times.

    brand new phone – BB with flip advantages, but on 2002’s network.


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