Related topics

RIM develops Wi-Fi BlackBerry... again

Second-gen 8800 to get WLAN tech?

RIM BlackBerry 8800

The BlackBerry range has taken a step closer towards bringing Wi-Fi on board following claims that Research in Motion (RIM) has gained the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) approval to include the connectivity feature in its handsets.

Exact details are still sketchy, but a number of online reports state that RIM will integrate 802.11a/b/g Wi-Fi into its BlackBerry 8800 series of GSM/GPRS/Edge handsets.

Such a development would be welcome news for BlackBerry fans, as it would mark the first time any of RIM's BlackBerry devices have combined both Wi-Fi and cellular capabilities together in a single handset, something users of numerous other handset brands now take for granted.

Interestingly, when details of the 8800 series first emerged back in October 2006, Wi-Fi was one of the features the then-unlaunched handset was claimed to incorporate. But when the smartphone - reviewed here - finally went on sale in February this year, Wi-Fi was not part of the package.

If the claims are true, it's likely RIM will release the Wi-Fi enabled device as an updated 8800 - perhaps the 8850. Curiously, the device doesn't appear to be the rumoured 3G BlackBerry 9000 handset, which first surfaced on the rumour mill in January.

Related reviews

RIM BlackBerry Curve 8300
RIM BlackBerry 8800
RIM BlackBerry Pearl 8100

Sponsored: 10 ways wire data helps conquer IT complexity