Yet Another Upcoming BlackBerry Smartphone: Codename Essex is Next Revision of Niagara (Tour)?!

BlackBerry Essex - Next Generation of BlackBerry Tour
By Kevin Michaluk on 1 Sep 2009 01:08 am EDT

Word of the BlackBerry codenamed "essex" has been making its way around the interwebs for the past 24 hours, starting off in our very own CrackBerry forums. The codename name isn't actually new - back in July when I did a forum re-shuffle I actually added the essex codename to the Other Rumored Devices forum description - it was a name that had come up a few times since WES in BlackBerry discussions. With the device moving along in RIM's development cycle, more details have now emerged about essex which is slated to be the next iteration of the BlackBerry niagara, aka the BlackBerry Tour (thanks salo!).

With the BlackBerry Tour barely out on the market, it seems a bit crazy for the shape of its successor to already be taking form, but essex's revisions are addressing the few complaints current Tour owners have. Mainly, essex will include Wi-Fi and the new touch sensitive trackpad that is found on the Curve 8520. And it will be a global phone with roaming between CDMA and GSM/GPRS/EDGE/UMTS networks. Camera is slated at a minimum of 3.2 megapixels, screen resolution is 480 by 360 pixels and we're hearing the device may just feature an orientation sensor to boot. As always in the world of BlackBerry, all will be known in time. My only wish is that we could have skipped niagara and went right to essex - I want this device a month ago!! In fact, I wantz this device so bad I just photoshop hacked one into my hand!

[ CrackBerry Forums

Topics: News & Rumors

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Yet Another Upcoming BlackBerry Smartphone: Codename Essex is Next Revision of Niagara (Tour)?!


Kev, how much are you looking forward to this phone compared to the Storm 2? Do you prefer this to the Storm 2? Does it come down to keyboard vs no keyboard for you or what? I'd be interested in your professional opinion.


haha i thought everyone knew this phone was coming was called the atlas before. Anyways im glad it had a trackpad! ill be picking this up fer shure!!!

and to my knowledge this phone should released early Q2/late Q1 but now idk if its true since kevin has one....but then again maybe Kevin's version is just the one with wifi+trackpad i wonder what else (if) they might add to it. I think RIM should hold long enough to release this phone so that it should be LTE ready...

YES!! My thoughts exactly; time it out to be the ultimate CDMA device. I can't wait for the trackpad either!

You state the real problem for everyone quite clearly. "..we could have skipped the niagara..".

I would have a shiny Tmo 8900 if their network hadn't melted down the week I picked up the phone at Costco. Since Tmo couldn't tell me if it was the phone or their network, I returned the unit. Now, I am faced with a tantalizing "plethora" of new product from RIM and the other manufacturers. That Nokia 900 looks interesting. My daughter took a pass on the "MyTouch", why should she buy an iPhone look-a-like. However, she would take a Tmo G1. Go figure.

The product lines are refreshing just a bit too often. The 8900 hasn't been out for a year and it looks like we have a successor and it still is quite a nice device. Tour is out on a two for one and here comes the replacement with the trackball replacement and Wi Fi. Ok, I understand that one but will the "new" 8900 be that much better with the alleged uber 3G speed?

I would love a Blackberry, any blackberry, but in the process of trying to make an intelligent decision, I tend to lean toward waiting for "the next big thing".

Thanks for giving this a read. Love your podcast.


Many of us just used our upgrades or sold our souls to customer service to get the Tour only to find that it had many build quality and OS issues. Maybe RIM would have been wise to make us wait a few months longer and put out the "essex" with all the fixes that it addresses from the Tour debacle. Now many of us are going to be dissatisfied to be stuck with our buggy Tours when it's replacement hits the market. RIM is not making friends this way......

I like my Tour. I don't need wifi. I get good reception everywhere I go (I live in the SC mountains in the middle of nowhere). I am not ready for a trackpad. I like rollin the lil ball around. I haven't had any issues with my Tour yet, & I got it the day it came out.

As long as my Tour (5th one) keeps working I'll be fine with it but being that I am on #5, if this comes out soon enough I may just have to return this one for that one.

This would be the perfect form. I too would love if the Tour had been skipped and this had been released instead. This would make a great phone just amazing. your photoshop abilities ;)

This sucks. I just bought the Tour because I couldn't handle the slow typing on my Storm. Now in less than 6 months RIM brings out an improved Tour. Why not wait until they had the device with all the features everyone was waiting for. No wonder they are the fastest growing company in the world, they have all us suckers buying a new phone every 6 months - as will I when this bad boy comes out (and I will have already bought the Storm 2).

I think RIM is making big moves since last year when the only new thing was a 8310, 8320, 8330.

But now this is just getting silly. All of these phones are pretty much the same damn thing. I love my berry. I think the 8900 is an amazing phone. I just wish that the phones they are releasing so often, had more of a change than the addition of wifi. I know Rim can do it. They have the people that can pull it off. But for whatever reason they seem to be playing a game of catch up, for all of the years that they had been lagging in releasing new devices.

All we have now is different code names, but the same phone with maybe one or two additional new features.

Again, I love Berries, but all these new but very similar devices its getting slightly annoying.

I am anxiously awaiting a all around new blackberry.

RIM can you do that?

I said I wasn't going to go thru this again--- upgrading our switching out BB but I'm a sucker for something new. I'll just pay full price after I read and wait til it's been on the market for a bit and get the wi-fi and bugs weaved out the new so called Tour, oops essex

I like my Tour and this is the one time I am the early adopter of anything, but if I had a choice, I think I would have chosen this Essex if it truely has all of the listed features.

Doesn't this make it look like anytime you want a phone from RIM you should just wait for a better version now?

With this logic, RIM won't sell anymore phones because everyone will just keep waiting for the next upgrade a c ouple months down the road.

But I thought that Verizon was getting the Onyx. So if the Onyx comes out on Verizon, why would they come out with the Essex with identical specs and appearance? That doesn't make sense.

Can someone answer me a clear answer? Did he really photoshop this picture or does he really have the "Essex"...(Don't give me hints or any little clues, just say yes he does, or no he photoshoped it but that's what its suppose to look like.) That's all, thank you.

So i am seeing the new blackberry tour 2 i guess but will it stay in sprint and version or change to another compnay

Hopefully this will come out soon and I hope current Tour owners are allowed to have a minual upgrade fee. The OS having issues with email etc along with no wifi and trackball issues this would be a good upgrade.

This picture has been circulating the internet as an official picture of the Essex. i guess it just really goes to show the actual credibility of some gadget sites claiming that this is a real pic without reading the print. Granted it may eventually look like this but some of those same site say the keyboard will be curve 8900 style instead of bold/tour keyboard, and this one obviously has the bold/tour. just some food for thought.

I'm ok with yearly device revisions but the Tour comes out and a rumored replacement already? If this is true I'll be one unhappy RIM customer.

I'm really hoping they update the styling of the 9650. It looks okay, but the 9700 looks so much better.

I'm still lovin' my first BB, the 8330 and will wait till a BB with everything I want is available, I read everything about BB everyday like a freak and am up for my new every two upgrade for a year now............wait

Pretty much what I wanted with my Tour.... Going to be a bit miffed if it comes out too soon and is not a free or highly discounted upgrade through Verizon since I paid full price for my Tour, only to see it so soon become replaced....