As expected, the next major release of the BlackBerry operating system will be called BlackBerry 7. RIM unveiled the new OS this morning, announcing that the first two phones to run the new software will be the BlackBerry Bold 9900 and BlackBerry Bold 9930.

The operating system is described as offering a faster user experience, improved browsing, and more. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Expanded voice-activated search
  • Manage personal and corporate content separately with BlackBerry Balance
  • Liquid Graphics with faster rendering, zooming, and panning
  • New JavaScript JIT (just in time) compiler
  • Enhanced HTML5 support including HTML5 video

The Bold 9900 and 9930 phones will also ship with the full version of Docs To Go for managing Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and PDF files. It’s not entirely clear if this means all BlackBerry 7 phones will get Docs To Go, since the press release only mentions the Bold 9900 and 9930.

The new phones will feature 1.2 GHz processors, 768MB of RAM, 8GB of storage, 5MP cameras, and slim designs with cases that are just 10.5mm thick. The phones will have 2.8 inch, 640 x 480 capacitive multitouch touchscreen displays along with QWERTY keyboards. They’re due out this summer.

Unfortunately it looks like Blackberry 7 will only be available on new handsets. Existing phones don’t have the hardware to support the operating system, which means RIM won’t be offering software updates.

Brad Linder

Brad Linder is editor of Liliputing and Mobiputing. He's been tinkering with mobile tech for decades and writing about it since...

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