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RIM BlackBerry 7230 (T-Mobile)

Research in Motion's (RIM) early attempts at mating its popular wireless e-mail device/PDA with a cell phone didn't turn out as well as the company had hoped. But the BlackBerry 7230, RIM's first color-screen model, is a different story. Offered by T-Mobile in the United States for a reasonable $400, the 7230 combines a GSM/GPRS world phone, a PDA, and wireless e-mail capabilities in a slim, 4.8-ounce unit that doesn't require an earbud to talk on. The only potential drawback is T-Mobile's service; if the carrier's GPRS coverage is not widespread in your area, you'll have a tough time getting e-mail on the go.

The good:
Compact; color screen; nice built-in keyboard; real-time e-mail; Web browser; Java support (J2ME); compact travel charger and syncing cable; decent battery life.

The bad:
Lacks speakerphone and memory-expansion slot.

The bottom line:
So long as you have decent T-Mobile coverage in your area, the BlackBerry 7230 makes an excellent smart phone.



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