BlackBerry 8520: $130 At T-Mo, $49 At Wal-Mart - InformationWeek
IoT
IoT
Mobile
Commentary
8/4/2009
11:59 AM
Eric Ogren
Eric Ogren
Commentary
50%
50%

BlackBerry 8520: $130 At T-Mo, $49 At Wal-Mart

The BlackBerry 8520 goes on sale tomorrow via T-Mobile wireless stores and its retail partner Wal-Mart. If you're a budget shopper, I'd plan to buy at Wal-Mart, instead, as it'll save you about $80. Also, first impressions of the 8520.

The BlackBerry 8520 goes on sale tomorrow via T-Mobile wireless stores and its retail partner Wal-Mart. If you're a budget shopper, I'd plan to buy at Wal-Mart, instead, as it'll save you about $80. Also, first impressions of the 8520.I met with Research In Motion representatives this morning. According to what they told me, T-Mobile is selling the BlackBerry 8520 at the price of $129.99 with a new two-year agreement. Wal-Mart is selling the same phone, with the same two-year requirement, for $48.88.

Does Wal-Mart enjoy undercutting its partners by a wide margin?

You may remember when T-Mobile first began selling the HTC G1 Android phone, Wal-Mart offered it at a substantial savings. This sparked a bit of controversy, as consumers were peeved that they could save a few Hamiltons if they had purchased the G1 at Wal-Mart instead of directly through T-Mobile.

This time around, at least you have fair warning. If you want to save a whopping $81.11 (or 62.4%), I'd highly recommend you shop at Wal-Mart rather than T-Mobile stores if you have the opportunity.

As for the hardware itself, the 8520 is small. Very easy on the hands, and highly pocketable. Though it supports all the enterprise services that its more advanced siblings support, the 8520 is clearly aimed at the prosumer/consumer market.

The biggest surprise, perhaps, is the optical mouse. I've used them on other handsets, and have not been impressed. This is the first optical mouse that I've encountered that I would say works well. It was very responsive, and is adjustable to match user input.

The 8520 is rimmed in a rubber coating, which makes it stick in the hand well. Media keys at the top of the phone make it easy to cycle through your music playlists.

As for the keyboard, it feels a bit tight for my larger hands, but those with smaller hands should have absolutely no problems with it.

Perhaps the biggest disappointment is the system software. RIM is relying on its tried-and-true 4.6.1 system software for the 8520, which means it doesn't have the latest design that is present on devices such as the Tour and Bold.

If you can manage to snag the 8520 at the budget-friendly Wal-Mart price of $48.88, it is a highly capable messaging device.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
Digital Transformation Myths & Truths
Transformation is on every IT organization's to-do list, but effectively transforming IT means a major shift in technology as well as business models and culture. In this IT Trend Report, we examine some of the misconceptions of digital transformation and look at steps you can take to succeed technically and culturally.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll