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BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 Officially Announced!

By Kevin Michaluk on 2 May 2011 08:30 am EDT
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BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930

Here it is folks, the announcement sooo many of us long-time BlackBerry users have been waiting for. RIM has officially announced the new BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 Smartphones, which features the traditional front-facing qwerty keyboard combined with a touchscreen. The keyboard is awesome (Bold 9000-like but better), and with a 1.2GHz processor and BlackBerry 7 this is a BlackBerry addict's dream come true! You can look for it to hit this summer from a carrier near you. Pricing and exact availability to come at a later date. Read on for the details.

Update! We have Hands-on Impressions with the BlackBerry Bold 9900 / 9930, a look at BlackBerry Bold 9900 / 9930 Cases, a photo of BlackBerry Messenger running on the PlayBook, and much more! Keep it locked to CrackBerry.com because the news from BlackBerry World isn't slowing down. 

Press Release

RIM Introduces New BlackBerry Bold Smartphones

New BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 Smartphones are the Thinnest and Most Powerful BlackBerry Smartphones yet, Featuring the Renowned BlackBerry Keyboard Together with a Brilliant Touch Screen and the New BlackBerry 7 OS

Waterloo, ON - Research In Motion (RIM) (NASDAQ: RIMM; TSX: RIM) today unveiled two new BlackBerry® BoldTM smartphones. The high-performance BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 smartphones feature a stunning and iconic design that integrates an incredibly easy-to-use BlackBerry keyboard with a brilliant, high resolution, capacitive touch screen. These exceptional smartphones are built on a new, performance-driven platform powered by the BlackBerry® 7 operating system and designed to deliver the ultimate in communications, multimedia and productivity for users around the world.

"The new BlackBerry Bold smartphones and BlackBerry 7 OS are inspired by millions of customers around the world who want the ultimate combination of performance, functionality and style," said Mike Lazaridis, President and Co-CEO, Research In Motion. "These fully-loaded and beautifully crafted smartphones offer a highly refined user experience with blazingly fast performance, a brilliant touch screen and an outstanding typing experience."

Thin, Sleek, Iconic Design

Distinguished by an iconic design and the industry's best keyboard, the BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 smartphones feature the premium materials and finishes that characterize the BlackBerry Bold line. Both models have a lustrous exterior with a brushed stainless steel frame and a high-gloss glass-weave backplate. They are also the thinnest BlackBerry smartphones yet, at only 10.5mm. The quality materials and optimized design of the new BlackBerry Bold smartphones are instantly evident when held in the hand.

Performance-Driven

These BlackBerry Bold smartphones are built on a new performance-driven platform featuring a 1.2 GHz processor, Liquid GraphicsTM touch screen, and support for high speed 4G/HSPA+ wide area wireless networks.
The Liquid Graphics touch screen, a key new feature powered by BlackBerry 7, delivers fast, smooth performance for highly responsive touch-based navigation, web browsing, pictures, video and graphics intensive games*. Offering up to 60 frames-per-second performance with instant UI action/response, Liquid Graphics gives customers a visually rich and immersive experience that's responsive to the touch. In addition, the smartphones feature brilliant displays with an eye- popping 287 dpi to deliver crisp, stunning visuals.

The new platform also provides support for 4G networks; the 9900 supports HSPA+ connectivity, and the 9930 supports CDMA EV-DO Rev. A and HSPA+ global roaming on GSM/UMTS networks.

NFC

The BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 smartphones include built-in support for NFC (Near Field Communications), a new technology that will enable many rich and exciting experiences. Through NFC, users will be able to, for example, pair the BlackBerry Bold to an accessory or read information such as a web link from smart tags by simply tapping their BlackBerry Bold to an NFC tag (eg. Smart Poster).

Augmented Reality

The BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 smartphones feature a built-in compass (magnetometer) to support location-based services and augmented reality. APIs will allow third party developers to take advantage of the new functionality within their applications. The new smartphones will also include Wikitude, the leader in mobile augmented reality, which overlays contextual information on what the user sees through the smartphone's camera viewfinder.

HD Video

The new BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 smartphones support up to 720p HD video recording and playback. Users can easily share their videos directly from the smartphone or sync videos, as well as music and photos, to their computer using Media Sync in the BlackBerry® Desktop Software.

BlackBerry 7

The BlackBerry 7 OS is designed to power the new performance-driven BlackBerry Bold platform. It provides an easier and faster user experience with improved browsing, voice- activated searches, the ability to manage personal content separately from corporate content, as well as additional personal and productivity apps out of the box.

The BlackBerry Browser has been significantly enhanced in BlackBerry 7. In addition to the general performance gains of Liquid Graphics, which helps deliver faster rendering and seamless panning and zooming, the BlackBerry 7 browser includes a new JIT (just in time) JavaScript compiler to improve the load time speed of web pages. The new browser also includes support for additional HTML5 elements, such as HTML5 Video.

Building upon the Universal Search feature introduced in BlackBerry 6, BlackBerry 7 expands the capability to include voice-activated search. This new capability makes it even easier and more convenient to search for content on the smartphone or web.

BlackBerry 7 also integrates BlackBerry® BalanceTM, which separates personal content from corporate content on the smartphone, giving users the freedom and flexibility to use the handset for personal email, Facebook®, Twitter®, multimedia, games and other apps while satisfying the very real need for corporate data to be highly secure and manageable. BlackBerry Balance works in conjunction with BlackBerry® Enterprise Server 5.0.3, which provides a number of unique IT policy controls such as wiping only corporate data from the handset or blocking work related content and apps from being copied or forwarded to personal contacts.

With BlackBerry 7 on the BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 smartphones, users will also get the full version of Docs To Go® with all "premium" features enabled out-of-the-box so that users can easily work with Word, Excel and PowerPoint files directly on the smartphone. Docs To Go also includes a native PDF viewer.

Availability

The new BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 smartphones are expected to be available from carriers around the world beginning this summer.

For additional information please visit www.blackberry.com/touchbold


BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 Specifications

  • 115 x 66 x 10.5 mm, approximately 130 g
  • 2.8" capacitive touch screen display - VGA (640x480), 287 dpi resolution
  • Ultra-easy QWERTY keyboard, optical trackpad
  • 1.2 GHz Processor, 768 MB RAM
  • 8 GB on-board memory, plus microSD slot supporting up to 32 GB cards
  • NFC technology
  • 5.0 MP camera, supports 720p HD video recording
  • Orientation Sensor (Accelerometer), Digital Compass (Magnetometer), Proximity Sensor
  • Built-in GPS / aGPS
  • Dual-Band Wi-Fi® - 802.11 b/g/n at 2.4 GHz and 802.11 a/n at 5 GHz
  • Bluetooth® 2.1+EDR support
  • Wireless Network support:
    • 9900:Tri-BandHSPA+,Quad-BandGSM/EDGE
    • 9930:Dual-BandCDMA/EV-DORev.A, Dual-BandHSPA+,Quad-Band GSM/EDGE
  • 1230 mAh removable, rechargeable battery
  • BlackBerry 7 OS

Reader comments

BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 Officially Announced!

141 Comments

Copped. They had me with 1.2 Ghz processor, but this is just insane! A bit more details on BlackBerry 7 would be nice, though ;-)

Peace,
Yousif.

I agree. There is no way a 1250 mah battery is going to cut it. Thing is, the Seidio/Mugen's won't have an extended battery for a while. I guess it's the price you pay for getting a thin device.

This bad boy uses the ARM A5 processor, which delivers near A9 performance while using only 1/3 of the power. It should suffice. :)

you will be mine my dear! i only hope it will be avaible until august in germany when i have to renew my contract..

HSPA+? Awesome. I guess t-mobile usa will get this. Hopefully sooner than later.

Whatever happened to the all touch screen device?

They will. I posted on the forums a week and a half ago the TMO had updated their services, under options they listed Blackberry 4g unlimited data plans.

I'm sure at&t will be one of the 1st carriers to get this and I will be waiting...my only concern is the battery life

YES!! I love it!!! But... 1200 mAh... is that enough? I guess we'll se that in the next days...! I want to see a review very soon!! :D

When has RIM ever let you down with Battery Life? I'm expecting this to be good enough. They have probably tweaked the OS to optimize Battery life even better than before.

Torch lasts my sister for 3 days with wifi and 3G on at all times with moderate usage, that's more than the two android phones I owned before going blackberry. Blackberry = fantastic battery life.

The 9700 has 1500mAh and eats less resources than these newly announced high end phones which have more powerful processors, liquid graphics and god knows what other resource-eating features... all on 1230mAh. Someone explain to me how that makes any sense? I think I'll be sticking with my 9700.

CX has said it has the same battery life as the 9700.

But by all means stay with your 9700 if you'd like.

Newer ARM processors are more power efficient, therefore they use less power and can use smaller batteries. It's not a big deal.

I don't understand why we have a smaller battery... may be RIM is trying to keep the price low by having a weak battery? If that's the case RIM is run by idiots!!! At least they should release OEM battery with at least 2000mAh in my opinion! How about give the customer choose a better battery and pay bit more for good quality???

I heard that some countries don't allow contracts and most companies try to save money when buying phones... this may be why RIM making the battery weak... cut costs... I think it is stupid!

It's simply because the phone doesn't take as much power as previous phones, so a smaller battery can be used. I'm not sure why that's so difficult for people to understand...

Wtf? We already knew all of this - besides it being official.

When's it going to be released? 'Summer' is quite a vague date, just like the PB's Q1 release date.

I agree, this is my issue with rim, give me a darn date along with the announcement. Why is this so difficult for them?

Yawn....I loved my 9700, but had to move on. Blackberry hardware always seems to be at least 12-18 months behind the curve. Only innovative thing is the inclusion of NFC.

why no front facing camera? gotta give us blackberry users with last years BB phones a reason to upgrade already to a new BB. either way I am happy about them getting touch screen put on all there devices. that means angry birds coming! lol, I also hope they do get the netflix app. and a white color of the new BB devices.

Don't understand why everybody's panty's are all getting wet. RIM themselves confirmed that QNX will only run on dual core processors. Wich mean everybody getting these lame phones will need to upgrade again within a year and your phone will be obsolete again. New device, same old rim, still screwing us over. Just like they did with the bold 9700 , storm ,etc.

Excuse me, what are you complaining about? Doesn't Steve Jobs screw all the millions of iPhone users on yearly bases as well? What's your point?!

Given your screen name I guess you don't have a playbook but if you did you would realize that once you get one you don't use your phone much. So no QNX, no worries, this phone will do a great job for what you need it for and will do it in style.

Only pitty is looks like July instead of June.

"available this summer" but why? why not "available today, pick it up at your local carrier store" :( oh well, I waited long enough

T-Mobile is supposed to have them June 28th, so there's your release date. Nobody is going to release a new phone before the 'back to school' season at this point, so just relax.

Left Blackberry about one year ago due to the usual reasons. Looking at the new Blackberry phones with the beefed up processors, plenty of memory and not to mention touch screen. Blackberry is going in the right direction and it will make any smart phone customer look in Blackberry direction. I am very interested in the larger screen model and can not wait to give it a test ride. Great job Blackberry.

and I tweeted that Binladin is still alive - no one believes me without any proof right?
The new phones hold less capacity than the old ones AND they eat more resources.
Explain how they have the same battery performance?

Optimizations in OS, optimizations in the SoC, optimizations in the actual battery technology. Any number of factors can affect battery life, not just the maH rating and the higher specs of the phone.

Notebook computers have been getting thinner, lighter and faster for years, during which time their battery life has been increasing. More efficient processors combined with better code results in enhanced battery life...

YES!!! Just what I wanted...a 4G BlackBerry with OS7 ...really hope the Bold 9930 comes out sooner for Sprint around 1st week of June...ALL carriers could mean that the big 4 would get this sooner? And the local carriers later summer? Just seems odd they'd have this announced BEFORE BBW and NOT have it released soon after...but again...4G! (Well it'll be great when Sprint FINALLY gets Metro-Detroit up and 4G running)

The Sprint version is only 4G on roaming (HSPA+). No WiMAX. Sorry. Although Sprint is rumored to be abandoning WiMAX anyways, so no big loss for me. I don't need 4G, but I do need this phone! lol

Apparentley the US special forces found not only an iPhone on Bin Ladens body but an Android as well!!! Evil phones!!

What happened the WiFi Hot Spot? I thought the new phones were coming with this capability? Unless I missed something, I 'm not seeing it listed.

CX has already stated that the new devices and OS will handle power consumption much better then older devices. From CX on Twitter: "Battery life on the BlackBerry 9900 is pretty much equal to batt life on the 9700. #Huge improvement over the 9000."

I am currently Demoing the PB at a Electronics retailer. While I have sold many of them, the number one question I get is when is a New BB coming out that will compete with Android and iPhone. This devices is what many Crackberry fans want.

The battery is not that big of a deal. The HTC Inspire on AT&T has the same size battery and many folks can get a day out of it. That device has 4.3" screen and not on a OS known for its its battery efficients.

Now THIS is a Bold. The 9000 has alweighs been my favoriate Bold, I hope it has the leather battery cover. Now all RIM needs to do is make a new "middle" phone (meaning something like a Tour) That way theyll have the Pearl Curve Tour(or whatever) Storm AND The BOLD.

It's a carbon fiber "glassy" back, I was quite disappointed at the lack of leather. Deffo won't deter me from getting this phone though!!!

I personally wish they announced at least 1 more phone, but I guess they wanted to just showcase the 1 device that everyone has been waiting for since the Bold 9000 came out.

That's one phone announced *one day before* BlackBerry's premier event... BlackBerry World doesn't officially start until tomorrow.

This will be an excellent device. Consider the things people have been waiting for, Open GL, HTML 5, HD Video 8 Gig Internal Storage, 14.4 Network Speed capability .. to say the least. Its going to be thin and light - A Summer hit :-)

Can't wait !

im on the fence about getting this phone... though ever since i entered the world of blackberry iv been needing the next best thing every year from my pearl 8120 to the bold 9700 and now my bold 9780 - i might want to actually wait this round out until my contract is up in 2 years... But with the sketchy stuttering keypad the 9780's are famous for i might just get this new Bold when released... lets see how much $$ i can save up haha

I don't mind the fact the BT 9930 is only 3G,LTE will better established next year anyway.But it would have been nice to have the FFC.Regardless this looks to be just the device RIM needs to be considered a viable contender in Verizon's smartphone lineup.Cankt wait to see more video of the 9900/9930 in action.

I switched from IP4 to Bold 9780 and am enjoying it.
But if the new Bold Touch won't have MiFi hotspot,
then I can't use my Ipad the way I hook it up with the IP4 when I am on the road.
Without that capability, most of my interest in the new Bold is off.
And I have very little interest in a PB at least for now (even with the Bridge. I have a 6Gb data plan).
Meh!

WOW.....I just changed my mind, I'm going to use my upgrade when this phone is released and not wait until Dec. This will make a perfect match with my PlayBook

It is not showing support for any 4G, only HSPA+ that T-mobile acts like it is 4G. Wimax and LTE will not be supported at this point in time, but the phone will still be awesome, and over half of the nation doesn't have access to 4G coverage anway.

"The new platform also provides support for 4G networks; the 9900 supports HSPA+ connectivity, and the 9930 supports CDMA EV-DO Rev. A "

Next time read the article too.

Yes it says it supports "4G" but this is not actual 4G, EV-DO Rev. A and HSPA+ is still in the 3G area, most analysts consider them to be 3.5G or 3.75G, but just has comparable speeds to the current 4G phones out there. HSPA+ is approximately limited to 21Mbps, while WIMAX is up around 40Mbps. This is my point, these phones have similar capabilities to current 4G networks, but don't have the long-term abilities that WIMAX and LTE.

Just saying, because the Playbook will be available on WiMax, so who knows, maybe they'll get special treatment from Sprint and go wiMax too? Anything is possible at this time based on past experiences.

So here's a question....

The notion of the thinnest Berry ever.....

Is that based on the SS band? You have that, then the angled cover/material that takes you in towards the battery area.....

Just curious....

I cannot wait to use my last Verizon NE2 on this puppy. My local store will give me a very good trade in credit on my 9650, but I will probably keep that as a backup, just in case.

Hmmn...tsk! tsk!!
Battery power...NOT IMPRESSIVE!!! :(
'mean...what kinda battery power matches d 9000/9700/9780(for that kinda specz fitted into the 9900/9930)???
SOMEBODY...ANYBODY...PUHLEEZZZ talk to RIM!!!

Hmmn...tsk! tsk!!
Battery power...NOT IMPRESSIVE!!! :(
'mean...what kinda battery power matches d 9000/9700/9780(for that kinda specz fitted into the 9900/9930)???
SOMEBODY...ANYBODY...PUHLEEZZZ talk to RIM!!!

Looks like a lot of people whining over battery life. We just don't know how it works out in practical use, which is the only thing that matters. It has been pointed out several times now that a lot of things can affect the life you get out of a battery. mAh capacity doesn't tell the whole story.
My Volvo 1.6 diesel is a lot more fluent and snappy than a VW 2.0 diesel that I drove 5 years ago and it's getting me close to 1000km on a full tank.
Same thing could be true here: optimized hardware and software could easily mean that this baby will have the stamina of the 9700 (which, in smartphone circles is pretty damn good).

We'll just have to wait and see!

EX-cellent! I was hoping to upgrade to the 9780 but this 9900 will be a Far-More-Than-Adequate substitute. I don't suppose that the 9900 will feature Military-Spec Construction, though. :-(
Oh well, in any case, Let's start seeing the aftermarket customixing goodies.

Does anyone know if the new device/OS will support WIFI tethering?

I'm a pretty pXXXXX off Android user (annoyed about poor battery life), and am considering a jump to the Blackberry Fold, but would be sad to lose the WIFI tether that android 2.2 has, and had read somewhere that RIM would be offering it on the new models.

I just got a 9780 about a month ago w/ T-Mobile and I'm ready right now to trade and spend for this Newest New Bold. Wait though, I still need to pay my Taxes! =(...

wow guys, chill! this phone looks AWESOME! hopefully this will start to bring everyone back from the droid side, I mean dark side... no wait I meant droid side, and get people's hopes up for crackberries again.

I can't believe that just after releasing OS 6 they're already bringing out OS 7 - seemingly out of nowhere - this isn't like RIM! the only thing that might be weird is the touchscreen which seems like it would force you to decide for yourself what you use the trackpad and what you use the touch for in phone navigation, but if that's the only problem then I'd LOVE to suffer such a burden by having this phone! :p

I fear the "1230 mAh removable, rechargeable battery" won't be enough.... I don't want a dreaded 12H lifetime again like I have with my Bold 9000.

WTH - give us at least an 1550 mAh, nobody cares about the weight.

RIM got me speechless! This phone is just awesome! Been waiting for it for a long time and now I want it so bad

Bells, Whistles, gravy and all the trimmings (sorry for the mixed metaphors)... BUT it will last only 4 hours on that battery. It's why I moved from my HTC Touch Pro 2 back to a BB - my 9780. Great capabilities, but wow I have gone 2 days without draining the 9780 battery. Unless there is some sort of super energy efficiencies (like the smaller screen) built in, I can see this as having the same problem as the iPhone and all touch screens. This is my 3rd BB and I've had only one touch screen. I hope I'm wrong, Mr. Lazaridis!!!

Really? A 1.2Ghz BlackBerry?? With touch-screen AND a keyboard??? Oh, sign me up! I'm still loving the 9000!!

These look like awesome phones, But still no DUAL SIM blackberry, the dual SIM phones are more and more available, a BB with touch and dual SIMS with active standby, will be the most awesome phone in the world.

OH MY GOD! OH MY GOD! THIS IS LIKE THE BEST BLACKBERRY THAT EVER CAME OUT <3 SINCE IT EVEN HAS A KEYPAD & A TOUCH SCREEN! I WOULD SO DO ANYTHING FOR THIS PHONE! GO CRACKBERRY (:

No LTE = No Interest
I keep a phone about two years. I have no desire to upgrade to something that is outdated when I pull it out of the box. I waited for 4G in my area and will wait for a real 4G phone. Warning RIM that does not mean I will wait forever for a BB.

I got the 9000 when it originally was released and loved it until the software started to lag behind, good old AT&T.
When my contract was up and no 9900 in sight I switched to T-Mobile and a 9780.
Nice phone but not my 9000.
Now the 9900 is coming out, Yea a real keyboard again and even touchscreen.
I can't wait, it will worth paying for the upgrade.

I am with Sprint and have been waiting for a new Blackberry to come before the Rapture. I sure would like this one.

There are just so many things I love about the 9900/9930!... the fast processor, the touch screen/keypad combo, BlackBerry 7, accelerometer, compass (yea, I'm a little directionally challenged.) and BlackBerry durable! I could REALLY make use of the full Docs To Go too.

I spend a lot of time on the road so this would be perfect.

The 9780 has around 13 days of standby time and 6.5 hours of talk time - pretty impressive!
The biggest problem of the particularly the 4G Android phones is the poor battery life, usually not enough juice to make it through the day.
Will be interesting to see how BlackBerry's 4G Bold's battery holds up..
This is a good article that compares the new Bold 9900 to the current version.
http://www.cellphonedoc.com/touch-bold-9900-versus-9780/

PS. It's always significantly cheaper for you to get your Blackberry online than going directly to your local Sprint, Verizon or T-Mobile store.
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PS. It's always significantly cheaper for you to get your Blackberry online than going directly to your local Sprint, Verizon or T-Mobile store.
Click on the link below to see how you too can benefit.
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Well it Looks like RIM has done it again. They have put the screws to us loyal customers. Everyone seems to be concerned about the battery, but what about the fact the camera sucks, there is no flash, no front facing camera, OS7 looks like 6 and so on. This is last years model with a different look and a faster processor. It's time to get with the times RIM and give us a phone that competes. I think someone is circling the drain.

FYI Folks... LOOKS LIKE THE 9900 IS COMING WITH A FRONT FACING CAMERA!!!

Last night I went to a T-Mobile "Corporate" Store to look at all their phones that had front facing cameras. I have had the 9700 since it came out, and mine has been nothing short of great for me. I keep him in a rubber skin, and I clean it once every 3 months. However, I am now coming across a need for the ability to skype or video chat with my children while I am away on business, and I don't want to always have to lag my laptop around. So as I told the rep, "IF I EVER UPGRADE" (which I have been out of contract with them for 3 years now with an impeccable payment rating), I would only do so to a phone with a front facing camera that I have vetted thru CNET & such. Sure enough, he brought out the Bold 9900, which he was installing on the security display mantle device they use, and it was operational!!! More importantly, IT HAD A FRONT FACING CAMERA!!! Right next to the LED indicator on the top right. He also showed me the spec sheet they put under the phones on display, and it had it listed!!!!

Now the down side!!! I tried logging into my Gtalk account on the phone, and there were no options listed in it to switch from type-to-video chat with the person I was testing it with (she is in another city with a cam that works in Gtalk). Likewise, MSN didn;t either, Facebook didn't either, and I did not try Yahoo. BlackBerry Messenger did not as well, nor did the folder that holds sms/mms messages. I even went into BlackBerry world to see if there was a skype or qik program available (which the 9900 did not have on it), and there wasn't. Finally, I even went to the video camera itself, and there were no options to chat with anyone, just to record front facing video, which I was able to do!!!

I am assuming it will probably only be a matter of time before google, msn, & yahoo come out with new versions to be available in BlackBerry world, but it would have been totally cool if BBM had an option, or better yet, SKYPE! Hint hint BBerry Corporate!!!

Oh, and btw, the T-Mobile corporate sales rep said it would be officially available before the end of Q3, which is Oct 1st. This would seem to me to be reliable info since he was in the midst of putting it out on display now!!! Labor Day maybe? :)