updated 07:40 pm EDT, Mon July 11, 2011
BlackBerry Bold 9900 clears FCC
RIM gave a more definite sign that the BlackBerry Bold 9900 was getting close to launch with an appearance inn FCC filing. The testing appears to clear the phone's short-range wireless, such as its Bluetooth, NFC, and Wi-Fi. Unusually for an FCC test, the phone's cellular connections haven't been mentioned, though the 9900 is GSM and HSPA+ only; it would be tested separately for CDMA and EVDO as the 9930.
The phone represents RIM's current best hope and upgrades to a much faster 1.2GHz processor, a 2.8-inch, 640x480 touchscreen, and 768MB of RAM. BlackBerry 7 is key to the upgrades and gives it a much more responsive interface as well as OpenGL 3D gaming, faster browsing, BlackBerry Balance splits between home and work, and universal voice search.
Most leaks have the Bold 9900 shipping no sooner than last August and more likely September. The timing lines up almost ideally in RIM's own FCC request, where it requests an unusually short 45-day confidentiality on common details. As such, the details would become public on August 25, right as it could reach its first carriers.
AT&T is most likely the first US carrier, though Sprint and Verizon should get the 9930. Most Canadian carriers should also pick it up and may preempt the US. The phone is the victim of one of RIM's longer delays, having been shown off in early May but not making it to shelves until almost four months later. [via Wireless Goodness]