Sprint to launch BlackBerry Oxford (Style) October 31st?!

BlackBerry Oxford / Style
By Bla1ze on 11 Oct 2010 05:39 am EDT

According to some newly leaked slides, it looks like the BlackBerry Oxford (aka Style, 9670) will be arriving in Sprint stores October 31st. We've known BlackBerry Oxford to be the codename for the device all along but, the BlackBerry Style name is no longer present here on the these slides. That said, we're left wondering if the device will actually now launch as the Oxford or if the Oxford name was just for the slides. We're not gonna count the BlackBerry Style name out just as of yet but let's face it, the name wasn't exactly favored (fitting?)

Whatever it goes to market as, there will be two versions available. One in gray and one in purple which will launch at a later date. As noted in the slide, the device will cost only $99 after a $100 mail in rebate. Anyone gonna hop on this this BlackBerry 6 powered clam shell when it releases? Or still holding out for a better CDMA BlackBerry?

Source: BGR

Reader comments

Sprint to launch BlackBerry Oxford (Style) October 31st?!


I much prefer the name Style over the name Oxford which sounds boring.

The flip definitely looks a lot better than it did from leaked photos a while ago.
Would I get it... not sure, I prefer Sliders/candybars style phones over flips.

There was one time in August that they leaked a more Curvish looking version but that has since disappeared. But through all the leaks this has been the same look.

You are right but I meant the leaked shots from a few months ago didn't do it any justice. I've seen better looking flips while I was in Japan then whats commonly out in the market near me but from recent videos of it, it's not as bad as I thought it was.

Like zensen I prefer the candy bar style phones. As for the "oxford" title.....uh.....yea that needs to be thrown out! But I think I may pick up the clamshell for my 12yr old daughter so she don't rack up minutes from unwanted calls lol. Ok......back to bb..... The name...lose it....clamshell smartphone? Rather haVe a better cdma candybar phn

I will keep on waiting because I am eligible for an upgrade in december and I know something better is on the horizon. The only thing that is tempting about this phone is that it comes with Blackberry 6. But i'd really be pissed if I was to get this phone and 2 months later Sprint comes out with a touchscreen BB. I prefer candy bar type phones anyway. So I'll just keep on waiting....

It shouldn't be named Oxford or Style, it should be named Flop! It's going to be a major flop and waste of money/time. Bring on better one, for crissakes! Yall blind or what?

Exactly, RIM just doesn't get it. Too many mediocre designs and half baked models.

As I stated a million times on this forum, RIM needs to streamline their models into 2 models at most (touchscreen and a full qwerty bold). Stop producing silly nonsense models trying to please every single consumer. Their half-baked models are killing them and one reason why my next smartphone won't be a BB.

Call it what you want, this device will sell once people have the chance to try it for themselves. It's practically gonna have no competition in it's own segment. I like the idea of it but I do want to have it in my hand before I make a decision.

True, but that's why this is a good time for Rim to bring them back. Remember, things go out of fashion, but they always come back sooner or later. Remember when everybody would laugh at you if you had a big phone, or "brick"? Then the phones got smaller and smaller? Well, look at the size of the Android phones now. Big is in fashion again.

I'm visiting Seoul, Korea for a couple of days an everywhere I look people have flip phones. Men and women are using them. I think there are many places where this phone will sell.

Awkward.. i fell awkward just looking at it.. it's so weird. I think blackberry should stick to the sliders and candy bar style.. and work on staying away from flip phones. Anyone looking for a good blackberry should get a bold! I love mine.

I love my torch, I know somebody who loves their pearl flip but wish it had better hardware... There's a reason that they have many different styles and form factors, different people have different preferences!

Finally! Hopefully we 9650 6.0 users will be able to copy over the CODs and get the same functionality — no way am I getting this thing.

I swear RIM is going from BAD to WORST with their handsets..This is the WORST by far. After the beautiful 9700, I would think it would have been all uphill after but NOT..!!! This is the reason so many faithful crackberry heads are switching to apple and android, sexier phones..

As much as I applaude RIM for having so many brands of Blackberry to market to the masses, people want phones that do it all! If RIM gets it together and bring the playbook specs & hardware to a flagship Mobile device (ON ALL CARRIERS!!!!!!!!) They may have a winner that really brings them back on top... (and be back to Blackberry :-) ) Luckily for RIM, there are still a lot of non tech savvy ppl who A) dont have AT&T, or B) Android is to complicated for them to really enjoy, so they suck up all those people and give them a good beginner to lower intermediate smart phone thats usually inexpensive. They also have the3 Crackberry faithful, but do to the desire for more captivating Phones, they're losing them by the boatload... I really hope that by the time RIM releases their QNX power phone, the tech is not what they released on the playbook...

... now back to playing with my Awesome Evo with the terrible battery :-)

Does anyone know if Sprint worked with RIM on this design like AT&T did with the Torch? Will this be a Sprint exclusive device?

What is it about freedom of choice don't you people get?

It's like cars. Many beautiful sleek models out there, but, year after year, minivans and *boring* 4 door sedans sell quite well.

***YOU*** may not like it, but, on your next trip to the mall, check out how many women use flip feature phones.

I am sure thousands of hours of market research was done on this puppy, and, it fills a gap. Apple doesn't have one. Android doesn't have one. Let's say it sells five million units annually....that would comprise about 10% of total sales.

As a RIM shareholder, I couldn't be more pleased with this launch.

How dare they try to cater for all different people out there, don't we know we're one size fits all? Rim can't seem to do anything right these days, everybody loves to hate Rim.

I guess they're trying to appeal to people who like ugly phones that have unnecessary moving parts, that put more of a drain on battery life and pose and another function that is known to fail and render the phone useless. For what? So I can look like Captain Kirk when I answer my phone?

It gives us the flip with full keyboard in a phone that does it all! You may not like the looks of it. But guess what more of the same keeps your market share more of the same! How about reaching out to a new demographic?! You can wait for the next same old style but I for one can't wait to get the new clamshell phone!

People here are voicing an opinion, not the RIM gospel. If you want to continue to drink the Kool-Aid, then by all means go right ahead.

"Apple doesn't have one. Android doesn't have one."....are you telling me that both Apple and any Android manufacturer DON'T do market research? Do you really believe that if Apple thought for one second that this is a market they could tap into they wouldn’t? Or Microsoft? Or HTC? Or LG? Or Samsung? Yeah....right.

Oh, and your RIM stock is hovering at $49.98 after hitting a 1 year high of $78.78...and that's down from a 3 year high of about $150.00. Just sayin...

And smell some fresh air.

Included in is vast list of successes over the years, RIM has made a few missteps....but offering a new design that will appeal to a notable segment of cell phone purchasers isn't one of them.

BTW, I've made nothing but $$$ on RIM. Bought and sold twice a few years back, and bought in again six weeks ago. Love the story, and love their recent Q3 results. Quote short term stock movement all you like, but that will not take away from years of significant year over year increase in virtually every matrix.

I'll take RIM's strategy over yours any day.....

First, I'm very glad you've made money by short-selling RIM. Personally, I don't see a 3 year profile as "short term". I would just say that I view buying and selling any stock twice within a year is short term.

That's just my opinion, which was the point to begin with. You have your opinion of this handset, others have theirs. Just because there are those of us don't agree with you doesn't make us "ignorant". We simply see this differently than you do. That's where I take issue with your initial post.

As for this phone appealing to a "notable segment" of cell phone purchasers, I don't buy it. It's a Sprint exclusive, and while they have made inroads as of late, they are still the 3rd largest carrier at 48.1 million subscribers (compared to Verizon at 91.2 million and AT&T at 85.1 million).

If RIM's intent is to appeal to a notable segment, then why bring this to Sprint? Why not bring it to AT&T and/or Verizon as well to ensure you get to a larger consumer base?

That's a "strategy" I don't understand.

One can love or hate a phone design all they like. It's a very subjective opinion. But to suggest a phone will fail in the marketplace based soley on your personal opinion of what you like or don't like is, well, ignorant.

Secondly, you quote extensively the subscription numbers of the major U.S. carriers. That's all well and good, but a specific phone does not live or die on U.S. sales alone. The U.S. appears to be a strange market where carrier exclusivity is a big deal. Not so in the rest of the world. The Torch is carried by all three majors in Canada, as will the Oxford likely be.

I can see an inexpensive Smart Phone like the Oxford bridge the gap for many Feature phone users entering the smart arena for the very first time.

Whoa would be the division head who only made descisions based on following what the competition has already done.

It is a subjective opinion, I agree with you there. But it's those subjective opinions that will, inevitably, determine if this fails or not. But I'd venture to say that, since it's announced existence, most of RIM's core base users don't think highly of it. If you can't please your hard core base, then I'd venture to say that most consumers who never owned a Blackberry won't take to it either.

Now, all of this is pure speculation. No one knows for sure if this is going to sell or not, and I'm well aware that a phone doesn't live or die based on US sales. But I would counter with this. To suggest a phone will succeed in the marketplace based solely on your personal opinion of what you like or don't like is, well, also ignorant.

I also agree with you that "decisions based on following what the competition has already done" is correct. That's the problem. RIM isn't innovating in the handset market. They aren't even following right now. Outside the Playbook (which has me intrigued), they seem to be hell bent on trying to stretch 5 year old, outdated technology as far as they can. There isn't any real excuse for the failure of the Storm series (yes, I own one), or for their constant "refresh" policy. That's not good business, that's not innovation, and it's not progression.

They are losing market share fast to both iOS and Android (I won't throw in Windows Phone 7, as no one really knows how that's going to be yet). They need to release something that redefines the phone, not just try and catch up. This, sadly, isn't it. Nor was the Torch, nor was Blackberry 6. A phone based off the QNX OS, one which is app friendly and far easier to develop for, would be a good first step.

One of the best selling phones for Sprint the past 5 years was the Lotus! Why, because it was a clamshell with a full keyboard! And guess what if it could have done all a blackberry does I would never have stopped using it! So before you condemn this phone try seeing that it may just bring in a different demographic into the blackberry fold!

As for a touch screen blackberry, well most of my friends who have blackberry's have gotten the touchscreen phones and returned to their old blackberry!

The top 10 selling phones (based on overall sales) on Sprint in 2010 are, in order, HTC Hero, Samsung Moment, Samsung Intercept, Curve 8530, Bold 9650, Palm Pixi, LG Rumor Touch, Samsung M240, Samsung Seek and the LG Remarq. Of those, only the M240 is a clamshell design but not a smart phone. RIM has two in the top 10 already, with the 8530 and 9650.

That aside, let’s say for the sake of argument that the Lotus Elite was in the top 10. Let's take the comment “Whoa would be the division head who only made descisions based on following what the competition has already done.” Doesn’t the Oxford then fall into that category, considering that the Lotus has been available since 2008?

I’m not condemning the Oxford. In fact, I could see this as a viable low-level corporate phone, but I just don’t think it’s going to get traction as a consumer device. In that light, what I see is another behind the times handset released by RIM, which is becoming a disturbing trend. Nothing more.

I cannot say that I am fond of the style, but might give it a look because I am tired of waiting for Sprint to come out with a touch screen. I am limping along with my 8330 and would really like to upgrade. I already have a 9650 for work and would really like a touch screen for my personal device. Does anyone know if Sprint will release a touch screen anytime in the near future (next 6 months)?

See, here's what I don't understand. RIM thinks that we want flip phone styled BlackBerry's, when in reality, We want are good old phones like a Bold 9780. I don't want a flip phone, its annoying to open and close it all day ugh.

why cant sprint just come out with a similar device to the torch and include the gsm feature! they do have world travelers in their system -_- im in colombia with international roaming but nooooooooo sprint doest work here.

eww oxford gives me the chills.

I recently upgraded to Verizon's Bold and am content for the moment. Had Verizon launched the Oxford/Style about the same time as the Bold, I definitely would have considered it. In 2 years when I can upgrade for free again, I might look at the current version of Oxford/Style if it is still around, but now I won't bother. On the other hand, if Verizon comes out with a version of the Torch, I would be tempted to upgrade early.

Why hasn't this project been canned like the other phone failures the carriers recently canceled from RIM???

This is a new form factor, unlike the Storm 3 or 2.5 if you wish, which was a refresh (and let's face it...the Storm 2 was basically a refresh of the Storm 1). There isn't anything on Sprint's Smartphone lineup right now that is even remotely like this. Which is why I'm a little puzzled....I can't see this as RIM's answer to the Sanyo Vero ($9.99) or the Samsung M240 ($19.99), as those are not smart phones and the price difference is huge.

It's not really a competitor against the Motorola Renegade V950, Motorola Stature i9 or the Motorola Brute i680 (all three around the $99.00 to $120.00 price mark), since those are push-to-talk Nextel handsets. This isn't.

Which brings us back to this...the only thing that has the same form factor and capabilities is the LG Lotus Elite ($99.00). So, the question is really.....why bother at all? Why waste the resources, time and effort to go head to head with the LG Lotus Elite? Maybe I’m out of the loop a bit, but is RIM really worried about LG cornering the Sprint clamshell/flip phone market?

Penetration. over 60% of Americans still dont own a smartphone. Thats the target demographic I believe.

But then why make it exclusive to Sprint? Why wouldn't you want to include AT&T and Verizon at ensure you get greatest possible consumer base?

Something just seems...off...about it all.

In the US, it's a Sprint exclusive, which means, well, it's only available from Sprint. Hence the word...exclusive. You can see that right in the screen shot. I know it was rumored to be going to Big Red, but not so.

I think the problem is that most people here already have BlackBerrys, or are tech-savvy. I see this as something that will appeal to people who don't already have a smart phone. It is a good entry into the smart phone world. My daughter got the 8220 Pearl Flip for the specific reason that is doesn't look like a BlackBerry.

Although my wife loves her Curve 8330, she hates having to lock it all the time to keep from purse-dialing. Once the 9670 makes its way to USCC, I can see her finally upgrading to this, just to keep from purse-dialing.

Ok, besides the fact this phone looks like the cell phones my 2-year-old plays with.....did anyone catch the Visual Voicemail feature listed above? Does this mean Sprint will be offering this option with BBs? I hope so, I would love to have this option on my 9650.

I can't believe that Sprint doesn't have a touchscreen BB phone. I'm holding out for the Torch or Storm type phone. I've played with friends who have both, and they are solid devices. The Torch makes the Pre look and feel like a toy. C'mon, Sprint, what's the hold up?

I can't believe that Sprint doesn't have a touchscreen BB phone. I'm holding out for the Torch or Storm type phone. I've played with friends who have both, and they are solid devices. The Torch makes the Pre look and feel like a toy. C'mon, Sprint, what's the hold up?

I see that the picture above says "Exclusive."

I'm kinda p.o.-ed about that. I really like this form. I have had the 8330, 8230, 8530, and now the 9650. I REALLY liked the 8230. I miss the flip functionality. AND I HATE WHEN MY SCREEN GETS SCRATCHED.

Regardless of what other people think, I do think this phone will sell...Maybe not since it is a Sprint exclusive (which I think any exclusive rights to any particular carrier is absurd!)...but if it comes to other carriers, it will definitely sell.

I may be one of a few people that actually like this phone! Actually, I told my husband about it and he is interested as well, as it would be easier for him to carry at work and not have to worry about it getting damaged as much. I personally like the idea of the keys being covered. Yes, I would love to have a Torch, but I would never leave Sprint to get one. I like the idea of being able to stick this in my pocket and go. I'm a busy mom and don't always remember to lock my keyboard on my phone. Also looks as though this will give me a slightly bigger screen, which I like that too. I say bring it on! There is a market for it. And I'm now excited for my upgrade! Just my opinion, others may think it is ugly and not on trend, but I would love to have one!

Whenever images of the phone first began to surface, I was a little skeptical about how much the phone appealed to me. But after looking over the specs and various online videos, I can honestly say that I will find myself purchasing this phone next month when I renew my contract. It offers a new form that factor that I think will be very welcomed by consumers in regards to have the OS6 experience and the security against pocket dialing. This phone might see a slow start in sales, but once people get a chance to physical hold the phone and see it in action they will quickly jump on-board to the BB new phone.

The Oxford English Dictionary defines "Oxford" as: "Boring. Like a dictionary. Dull. No style. A hideous BlackBerry Clamshell."

That thing is hideous. If anything they need to work on their crappy app world and try to upgrade EVERYTHING-no wifi connectivity is a joke. The only bb i see worthy of any praise is the torch and the new 9780. BB need to expand their phones capabilities and try making a media friendly device. That will be a serious powerhouse of a smartphone.

I am Flip phone lover and Blackberry. i think the Blackberry Oxford is GREAT for pple like me. I would get it if i was not a Blackberry Torch (9800) user and if i was not with At&t.