Pearl or 8800: What Blackberry 4U

Research In Motion (RIMM), the Canadian telecom equipment maker is on a tear. Blackberry Pearl is already a monster hit for the company, and is being picked up by folks who typically didn’t care much for the Blackberry devices. The company announced Pearl’s more sedate and grown up brother, the 8800 (full keyboard) and it is already flying off the shelves.

Having tried the Pearl, courtesy of T-Mobile/RIM for over a month, I have come to love its SureType feature, and its minimalist footprint. The camera, while not the best is still good enough to capture life moments. For last week or so I have been playing around with the 8800 (thanks to TeleNav) and my initial impressions aren’t too good.

The battery life is not all that great, and I really don’t care much for the new keyboard which feels cramped and lacks the tactile feedback of the older models such as the 8700. The voice quality, however is much enhanced despite being on a Cingular network. (Read Walt Mossberg’s excellent review of 8800.)

I am more inclined to opt for Blackberry Pearl at this point, but would love your feedback. If you are a Blackberry Pearl owner, share your thoughts. If not, which of the two devices do you think might get your Dollars, Pounds, Euros and Rupees. (PS: I am using the popular GSM/US models, and the names and model #s might vary with country/wireless networks.)

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