I Doubt We’ll See A CDMA BlackBerry Curve Any Time Soon

Since the release of the Verizon BlackBerry Pearl, soon to be followed by the release of the Sprint BlackBerry Pearl (Nov. 23rd as rumor would have it), we have received a wave of questions asking when the BlackBerry Curve would be out on Sprint or Verizon.

I don’t have any more inside information than the next guy who spends way to much time wondering what RIM will do next, however, I can all but promise you that there won’t be a CDMA BlackBerry Curve out before Christmas.

We ran a poll a few weeks ago just to see when RIMarkable readers thought the Curve would hit a CDMA network and the overwhelming majority of the folks that responded don’t think that we will see the BlackBerry Curve until next Spring, however, about 20% thought that it would be here before Christmas.
Well, unless those pollsters mean Christmas of 2008, I don’t think there is a snow balls chance that we will see the CDMA Curve that soon.

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  • AR
  • Ross

    I really don’t know what to do. I want a blackberry, and have been obsessed with the Curve. I was dissapointed that the pearl just came out and I don’t know if I can wait much longer. I e-mailed verizon today, but who knows if they will answer. Also, I had a question about the new verizon plans- does the $29.99 plan offer the blackberry messenger or is that only for the $45 plan?

  • Thought

    Most of the reliable rumor sources, such as Jibi, have pointed to spring of 2008…either end of Q1 or beginning of Q2. If so this is a shame, as the Curve, IMHO, is the best BB out right now. It has the multimedia capabilities of the Pearl, but with the larger screen and full keyboard.

    I checked out the VZW Pearl, and while the VZW EVDO is sweet, the screen and the keyboard are too small for my liking. There is no way I could use something like that for work.

  • http://www.rimarkable.com Robb Dunewood

    I understand that most of Earth and it’s surrounding planets use GSM, and hence, it makes sense for RIM to come out with GSM devices first. What I don’t understand is why it takes so long for them to come out with CDMA devices afterwards.

    The potential market for GSM BlackBerry devices is massive. I get this… I really do. Most BlackBerry devices, on the other hand, are sold right here in the United States and there are more CDMA users here than there are GSM users.

    It seems to me like RIM would cater a little more to it’s biggest demographic.

  • bluehorseshoe

    As a user of the VZW Pearl, I’m happy they came out with this first. I understand the preference for the larger keyboard and screen, but I appreciate the fact that the Pearl does everything the Curve does, but in a smaller form that doesn’t look like a waffle.

  • Thought

    Robb: It would be interesting to know what percentage of BB sales are CDMA devices; as you allude to, it’s bound to be a greater percentage than the usual CDMA vs GSM worldwide statistic.

    The way I’ve come to understand it is that engineering a CDMA device is more like designing and building a whole new device from the ground up, even though a GSM equivalent may already exist. Much of the hardware and software is different. So even though the devices look the same, there are substantial internal differences. These mean almost 2 separate development tracks.

    I know this flies in the face of what Lazaridis said at one point, about how it was just about as easy as porting over a little software. But I have to think he was just grossly exaggerating for some reason or other.

    It should be noted that some manufacturers do manage to release their CDMA equivalent devices around the same time as their GSM models. Motorola seems to have been very good at doing this lately, even though their CDMA RAZR lagged terribly behind their GSM release. Since then, though, Moto has been great at supporting CDMA. But it seems that RIM doesn’t want to dedicate the resources to have simultaneous dev tracks for their GSM and CDMA models.

  • Chris Rowan

    Since when does a poll of Blog readers have any bearing whatsoever on when a product will be launched. I don’t see any logic in this entry…

  • http://www.rimarkable.com Robb Dunewood

    Well Chris, the poll we ran a few weeks ago doesn’t have any bearing on when the Curve is coming out.

    What this post is saying, however, to about 20% of the poll takers and all of the folks emailing me asking if the Pearl is coming out before Christmas,is that it is my belief that we won’t see a Blackberry Curve any time soon.

  • http://www.kradest.com Krad

    I agree. I don’t think there will be a cdma curve at all. Sprint is really hitting the skidz. And verizon does their own thing. CDMA will soon go the way of a dodo anyway. Long Live GSM/GPRS/EGDE/3G

  • Chris

    Tell Verizon to BEAT IT. I was a 4 year Verizon customer and had two Bberrys with them. Just switched to TMobile/Curve and would never turn back. All the hype of a lesser network on TMob is just that. Unless you live in the boonies, I seriously doubt you will notice any difference. You will notice better phones, and about $20.00 less a month on your bill with more minutes with Tmobile.

    And despite reports to the contrary, the wifi on my curve when connected to my home network is very fast.

  • gquaglia

    Motorola seems to have been very good at doing this lately, even though their CDMA RAZR lagged terribly behind their GSM release

    Didn’t Cingular have a lock on this phone for a few years? I think that was thhee reason for the delay.

  • hellno

    no the reason for delay is cdma and all the issues that come along with cdma. GSM customers are increasing, cdma customers are in decline.

    cdma = closed proprietary technology, which is is being phased out.
    GSM = standard open global technology.

    No reason for RIM to make a Curve for cdma, as fans of RIM, consumers better learn it, and understand it.

  • Dalton

    Yes, because hellno says so.

  • Thought

    CDMA sales should matter to RIM. From what I’ve been able to read, RIM’s sales in the US and Canada make up about 68% or 2/3 of their income. So let’s say that conservatively speaking the US market makes up about half of RIM’s sales. Let’s say that CDMA market in the US makes up about half of those US sales. Therefore, it’s reasonable that at least 25% of RIM’s income comes from CDMA devices in the US. And that’s not counting the rest of the world, which surely has some CDMA markets. So again, being conservative, let’s say that 30% of RIM’s money comes from CDMA devices. Sure, that’s not the majority, but it’s a significant chunk of change, nevertheless. I don’t think many companies can neglect about 1/3 of their customers.

    So I do believe that RIM, while still doing very well, is probably leaving a lot of money on the table by being so late with CDMA releases. The Curve is a great example; if RIM would have come out with the Curve as well as the Pearl for CDMA carriers, they would sell a whole lot more devices in the crucial holiday season.

  • http://www.rimarkable.com Robb Dunewood

    “GSM customers are increasing, cdma customers are in decline”

    This is not entirely true in the U.S. Granted Sprint lost 60,000 or so customers last quarter. Many of them, however, were iDEN Nextel users, some of whom undoubtedly moved to Verizon or Alltell as well as T-Mobile and AT&T. Even if they were all CDMA users, however, Verizon’s new post-paid subscribers alone out numbered what Sprint lost.

    It is true that GSM is growing faster than CDMA, but not so fast that RIM should ignore the requests of such a large and crucial segment of their customer base.

    Thought is dead on with his comments. RIM is leaving loads of money on the table by not coming out with CDMA devices quicker.

    Like I’ve said before, most BlackBerry users couldn’t even tell you what network technology their device uses less care about if GSM is better than CDMA or visa versa. They just want good phones, good service, and good reception.

  • bluehorseshoe

    @ hellno, Thought, and Robb

    I just switched over to VZW from TMO this past week simply because the Pearl (the phone I use and prefer) is now offered by VZW. The difference between the two services is ‘very’ noticable, but so is the pricing. Then again, you get what you pay for. My choice is the service over price, and I really don’t care if it’s CDMA, GSM, iDen, or two cups and a string.

    As a shareholder of RIMM, I’d strongly recommend them to push out the devices on CDMA sooner rather than later. The time to market is leaving money on the table, and the lifecycle for phones is leaving the CDMA releases at the end of the life line.

  • hellno

    The problem is bluehorseshoe, cdma’s lifecycle is nearing it’s end for many reasons. As a “shareholder” in “RIMM” you should really do some research before making statements like the ones above which remove all doubt that logic and reality has been replaced by fanboy dreams. Any company including RIM dealing with qualcomm is not a good move for RIM, RIM spending time designing handsets for thousands and dropping (cdma) instead of billions and growing (GSM) is a waste of time and money.

    Oh and by the way TMO had the Pearl from day one over a year ago, there was no reason to switch to vzw for a crippled vzw Pearl (again logic and reality has been replaced by fanboy dreams)

    RIM should continue doing what they do best, providing the best handsets to the standard, open, global community. RIM should NOT spend any time or money on the cdma family of closed, proprietary, technologies which lifecycle is coming to a well deserved end for many many reasons.

  • hellno

    No CURVE for you.

  • bluehorseshoe

    @ anyone

    Does anyone understand hellno? Did he/she escape from somewhere and should be reported to the authorities?

    Hellno, you sound like a GSM hand puppet. It must hurt when you sneeze. I’ve had the Pearl since the day it launched on TMO, loved the Pearl, but just needed better coverage and a better data network. VZW provides that. I’ve tested it vs. TMO and there’s no comparison. Get over it. Not sure what your issue is, or why you post like a 2 year old. If you’re that whacked in the head, go create your own blog and post replies to yourself!
    .

  • Thought

    Just to sound a note of reconciliation.

    I agree with hellno that GSM is clearly the future, has clearly won the worldwide market with overwhelming market share, and is a more open system. I also agree that Verizon cripples features and has generally higher rates, and thus is not the most consumer friendly.

    That being said, I also agree that most consumers do not care or even know what technology their cell phone functions on. As others have noted, the vast majority of people just want a device that works.

    And on that score, there is no doubt that Verizon has the overall best network right now in the US. That’s not VZW propaganda,that’s confirmed by independent testing.

    And even these claims and tests do not matter; what matters is what works for each individual customer. We see on this site many comments from people who attest to the fact that VZW offers them the best signal where they live and work and travel. And in the end that is all that counts, and who can argue against them? If that is one’s individual experience, that cannot be disputed unless one lives and works and travels where they do.

    And as noted before, it is apparent now that VZW is embarking on a path to transition to a GSM based 4G standard, so when we get 4G networks hopefully all of this dispute will go away.

  • bluehorseshoe

    @ Thought

    But VZW will still run CDMA for its phone service. Going LTE is probably the smart thing considering wimax will cost a ton to spread out. Sprint just dropped their. Interest in obtaining their partner on the wimax deal.

  • hellno

    no verizon will be switching to LTE and dropping cdma like a bad date. Vodaphone has spoken.

  • hellno

    btw bluehorseshoe, don’t go telling others what to do, or where to post. We all know your desperate vzw fanboy rants and deal with them, even though your sadly incorrect. Your suggestions, or problems with what others post is only your problems, get used to the truth vealot.

    Your move from TMO to verzion was a downgrade. And no there will be no Curve coming anytime soon for closed, proprietary, cdma.

  • bluehorseshoe

    @ Hellno

    The data will be LTE. As for you, your IQ doesn’t even exceed the amount of posts in this session. I don’t even care about the Curve, I own a Pearl. I only care about what works best, not concerned about GSM, CDMA, etc. All the wireless carriers have their issues.

    Hellno, you are mentally challenged. Leave the blog for those that want to discuss technology, not sell their propaganda.

  • siasconset

    you mean your problem right.. either way it’s awkward if not grammatically incorrect so let’s see you’re an english teacher, work for Verizon and consult for RIMM to be qualified to make those statements or is it the other way around?

  • hellno

    “Verizon dumps CDMA for GSM-based LTE in 4G networks” If one has a problem understanding that the grammar school education isn’t working, tell your mom to get you more tutoring.

    this choice reflects Vodafone’s long term commitment to Verizon and vice versa. The carriers are also investigating WiMax together as well.

    lookie here bluehorseshoe, your a vealot and a bad lier, don’t start making things personal, and leave your witty insults towards others to yourself. No one wants that kind of crap here. You don’t understand standard, open, global, GSM and thats ok but verizon is far from being any better than other networks out there. Keep on dreaming and hoping but you downgraded when you made your choice to move from t-mo to verizon. Oh and grow up.

  • brownhead

    I agree with everyone’s statements on this but have a question for you all – isnt the data speeds on the CDMA networks far better than of GSM? I used to have Cingular (ATT) and couldnt stand the speeds. I tether with my BB now on Sprint using the 8703e with decent speeds. Not sure if that is the case with the GSM phones. Please correct me if I am wrong, thanks fellas.

  • bluehorseshoe

    @ hellno

    If you knew what you’re talking about, perhaps you would make a valid argument. Verizon isn’t dumping CDMA, and CDMA has nothing to do with LTE. LTE is a technology to be used for 4G broadband data. Has nothing to do with your calls. CDMA is CDMA, GSM is GSM. LTE has been accepted as the 4G standard by GSM, and Verizon is hopping on that one as well. Verizon is going to replace EVDO with LTE, not replace CDMA. Don’t you think people would be shorting Qualcomm already?

    Nobody is ‘investigating’ WiMax as well (it’s already a known technology that only Sprint signed up for out of the 4 main carriers). Sprint just terminated it’s relationship with it’s partner on the WiMax rollout. Looks like WiMax isn’t going to get any love or support anytime soon. Why would someone sign up on LTE and also do WiMax? Do you know what you’re even talking about?

    Yeah, GSM is all over the place. But I live in the States, and in my opinion, Verizon offers better reception in the area that I reside. I don’t care what others prefer, nor would I even tell them what to do. I just post what I’ve come across and my beliefs. Do your research, think about it, and then post an educated reply.

    Now go home and get your shine-box!

  • hellno

    Sorry bluehorseshoe vealot, facts before your fiction, you and your posts are again being shown as nothing but fanboy rants based on NOTHING.

    GSM market share has grown 9% in the last year, totalling up to 62% of the market. In Latin America and the Caribbean alone, that penetration hit a wooping 78%. CDMA, on the other hand, has dropped in subscribers by 2.5% to 193 million subscribers.
    http://www.3gamericas.org/English/News_room/DisplayPressRelease.cfm?id=3114&s=ENG

    By the way when verizon DUMPS cdma for LTE that GSM % is going to show even more whoop-ass over closed, proprietary, cdma.

    Your still incorrect with your hopes and dreams of “Verizon is going to replace EVDO with LTE, not replace CDMA. Don’t you think people would be shorting Qualcomm already?”

    YES they are already doing so, open you eyes, qualcomm is taking a huge hit with verizon leaving the cdma camp. For your lack of comprehension let’s break down your statement above…. LTE is a GSM standard there for verizon will be upgrading to GSM to run LTE, while replacing both cdma and evdo. verizon is dumping cdma like a bad date. Read it, learn it, facts before fiction.

    “Verizon dumps CDMA for GSM-based LTE in 4G networks
    Posted Sep 21st 2007 12:28PM by Chris Ziegler”
    http://www.engadget.com/2007/09/21/verizon-dumps-cdma-for-gsm-based-lte-in-4g-networks/

  • bluehorseshoe

    @ hellno

    I guess you really don’t understand or know much about technology. LTE is a standard that has been accepted as the 4G data solution for the GSM platform. Verizon has also agreed to join the LTE platform, however…they have not announced anything about switching to GSM for voice. I guess you also don’t know much about Business 101 either. Verizon isn’t just going to throw CDMA away anytime soon. These frequencies that they own and use cost $$$, and the ROI needs to be recouped based on their investment into the technology. Verizon would need to spend billions on the infrastructure, rollout, exchange of their phones for compatibility, etc. if and when a switch were to take place. Then you need to ask, what advantage does Verizon have vs. AT&T if they both run on GSM? None. There’s no difference then between the two except for who provides the most coverage (which will be close to begin with), pricing (another area that would be close), and the phones. Then it’s just a matter of who has a better marketing department.

    Technology will always evolve, and in the arena of telecommunications, there needs to be a substantial difference between your competition in order to be a strong, successful player.

    PS – I’m not arguing the percentages of GSM vs. CDMA. And who cares about the islands? I reside in the US. If AT&T offered 3G data solutions on their blackberry’s, I may have actually been a GSM customer provided the pricing and coverage in my area was good.

    PS # 2 – you sound like a broken record. Same phrases, same misspelled words, etc. You bore me. Come up with something new.

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  • Rams

    I received this email from Sprint when I asked them when the Curve would be available. I hesitate to take is seriously though, given the lack of knowledge I have experienced in the past with Sprint employees

    Thank you for contacting Sprint. I will be happy to assist you regarding the handset availability.

    I understand that you wish to have the Blackberry Curve on the account and will definitely assist you regarding this.

    However, I have gone ahead and discussed the case with the Handset Department and noticed that we are in the final phase of launching the same handset model in order to better serve our valuable customer.

    Be assured that it will be launched very soon and you will be informed by the High Profile Promotions as soon as it get launched in the market.

    Thank you for contacting us, and we look forward to serving you.

    Veronica S
    E-Care
    Sprint
    “Where our customers come first!”

  • Rams

    I received another response on the same question – When will Sprint have the Curve? This time I got more specific response. Still not getting my hopes up…

    Thank you for contacting Sprint. I will be happy to assist you regarding Blackberry Curve phone.

    I understand that you wish to know about the phone. I would like to inform you that we will launch this phone on the middle of the January month.

    If you wish to get more information regarding phones. You just need to click on this hyperlink:-

    http://www.sprint.com

    I appreciate you emailing us today.

    Michelle S.

    E-Care
    Sprint
    “Where our customers come first!”

  • Phil

    I hope Sprint picks up the Curve by end of January or I’m jumping ship to AT&T

  • kay

    i work for sprint and the business sales folks are telling me april. they were just a conference and apparently that is what they were told there.

  • Phil

    Just spoke to Sprint retentions and they said April as well.

  • John

    So if sprint is April. Then Verizon is March….

  • Mike

    hello guys i have a great news for you all Blackberry curve is coming out on SPRINT on 04/17/2008 how do i know? I work for sprint and its allready on our new dvice lunch book :)

  • ocdude

    I just got off the phone with a Verizon reps names Markus, i threatened to leave because of some billing issues. So they were able to credit some of the wrong charges. At the end of the conversation, i asked him if the curve will be in store soon, the guy told me that yes, indeed, it will be mid of 2nd quarter sometimes in May 2008, on top of the BB curve, Verizon line up also consists of LG Envy 2 and also the cmda version of LG Prada. Unless the dude was yanking my chains… that sounds very promising

    check this link out, Verizon curve is due in May
    http://www.crn.com/networking/207000727

  • ocdude

    Phonescoop

    Verizon Parades Spring Lineup
    Today, 2:00 AM by Rich Brome

    Verizon Wireless today revealed its spring lineup of smartphones and messaging phones:

    BlackBerry Curve 8330: Features a 2 megapixel camera, 3.5mm headphone jack, support for memory cards up to 8 GB, stereo Bluetooth, EVDO, and streaming video playback (supports YouTube.) Available in May.
    LG enV2: A slimmer version of the enV, with larger external keys and a larger internal display. Key features include a 2 megapixel camera, slot for memory cards up to 8 GB, stereo Bluetooth, and text-to-speech. Available in April.
    XV6900: Verizon’s version of the HTC Touch. Available in April.
    Motrola Q9c: Similar to the Q9m, but with more business-friendly styling, plus support for location-based services. Available in April.
    Samsung Alias: Tweaked version of U740, with silver color and improved keyboard.