The mobile device is RIM's thinnest smartphone and its first dual-mode handset. The 8820 combines EDGE/GPRS/GSM cellular and Wi-Fi connectivity for data access and voice support; it also includes a built in Global Positioning System (GPS).
The 8820 has a raft of accessibility and storage features including: Speaker Independent Voice Recognition for Voice Activated Dialing (VAD), smart dialing, conference calling, speed dialing and call forwarding, as well as dedicated "send", "end" and "mute" keys. In addition to its "high quality, low-distortion speakerphone" the 8820 includes Bluetooth 2.0 support for use with hands-free headsets, car kits and other Bluetooth peripherals.
Storage includes a microSD / microSDHC (microSD High Capacity) expandable memory slot that RIM said can support current and future generations of microSD memory cards up to 32GB.
Addressing corporate security concerns, the BlackBerry 8820 is compliant with Wi-Fi security protocols including WEP (Wireless Equivalency Protocol), WPA (Wi-Fi Protected Access) and WPA2, as well as Cisco Compatible Extensions for simple, secure connectivity with Cisco wireless solutions.
For enterprises that require Wi-Fi users to access the corporate network through a VPN (Virtual Private Network) (define), the BlackBerry 8820 includes IPSec-based software that RIM said supports the most commonly deployed VPN gateways from vendors such as Cisco, Check Point and others.
RIM said the 8820 will be available from certain wireless carriers worldwide in the next few weeks, while distribution in the U.S., via AT&T, is slated for later this summer.