updated 10:45 am EST, Mon November 3, 2008
BBerry Storm Voda Friday
Vodafone UK's version of the BlackBerry Storm could beat Verizon's model to launch by a week or more, a tip sent to Pocket-lint suggests. Third-party reseller Phones4U claims it should start taking pre-orders for the touchscreen BlackBerry as early as Tuesday and will start shipping the device on Friday, substantially ahead of the November 16th date widely rumored for Verizon. Phones4U is reportedly the only third-party UK retailer allowed to sell the Storm outside of Vodafone.
Vodafone itself is also believed to be planning a very high profile release for the Storm and may have newly-crowned F1 champion Lewis Hamilton appear at the carrier's London flagship store. The driver is already acknowledged as carrying a Storm of his own ahead of an official release.
The Vodafone edition of the Storm is partly helped by its simplification versus the American version. While Verizon's example ships with both CDMA and GSM support, the European Storm comes only with GSM as well as its accompanying quad-band EDGE data and single-band HSDPA.