updated 09:30 am EDT, Thu October 27, 2011
RIM confirms myth-laden Porsche-shaped BlackBerry
RIM on Thursday confirmed one of the longest standing rumored BlackBerry models in recent memory. The Porsche Design P'9981 Smartphone from BlackBerry is based on the Bold 9900 inside but has a Porsche Design-made stainless steel shell, a "hand-wrapped" leather back, and a uniquely shaped keyboard. Software is also unique: it not only carries Wikitude's augmented reality World Browser and a unique pre-installed theme but gives each user an exclusive PIN code that can help tell when friends also have the same phone.
Inside, it still has the 2.4-inch 640x480 touchscreen, 1.2GHz Snapdragon processor, five-megapixel camera with 720p video recording, 8GB of built-in storage, and NFC support as the regular Bold. It ships with BlackBerry 7 and has a microSDHC slot to take up to 32GB more in content.
Rather than sell through traditional phone stores, the P'9981 is expected to sell through Porsche Design stores. RIM is targeting mostly wealthy Middle Eastern users most likely to be fans of the BlackBerry and will be selling it later this year in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
Pricing is expected to sit at $2,000, or about four times what the otherwise identical Bold 9900 costs off-contract.