updated 11:30 am EDT, Mon May 5, 2008
HTC Shift and BBerry 8820
Rogers Wireless is likely to soon pick up two very high-end handhelds for its network, according to observers spotting the additions at HowardForums. The Canadian provider's Hardware Upgrade Program list now shows an entry for the HTC Shift that suggests the company will be the first to offer the device as a carrier-locked option. The Shift is treated as a mobile computer by HTC and uses Windows Vista on a 7-inch touchscreen rather than a mobile operating system, using its 3G access for data rather than calls; a 40GB hard drive, Wi-Fi, and a front video camera are also standard.
The Rogers system tentatively lists the Shift for $1,725 with a three-year contract, nearing the European price but excluding a $50 mail-in rebate. Its plan is likely not to be unlimited and may draw on existing Windows Mobile or PC Card plans.
Also reportedly on tap is the BlackBerry 8820, the adaptation of RIM's 8800 business smartphone that adds Wi-Fi support. The phone will serve as a likely counterpart to the expected Pearl 8120 and may be a third, unannounced phone for Rogers' upcoming Home Calling Zone voice-over-Internet service for cellphones. The Hardware Upgrade Program lists the phone as selling for $475 with a three-year plan but before a $50 rebate.
Additionally, Rogers is currently listing the Nokia 6086 on its website and conspicuously mentions Home Calling Zone support despite the service remaining unannounced. The basic flip phone includes a VGA camera and is listed as selling for $25, though Rogers notes that the phone is out of stock and hasn't made indications as to when it will be available.