A charging sync cradle for the new BlackBerry 9700 Bold

RIM's first syncing cradle using side-panel connectors is released

The BlackBerry Bold 9700 smartphone was just announced by Research In Motion (RIM) last month, and the device was released in the United States by T-Mobile this morning. But that doesn't mean RIM's wasting time pumping out accessories for its new flagship BlackBerry.

Among the goodies listed on RIM's online shop, ShopBlackBerry.com, is the brand-new BlackBerry Bold 9700 Sync Pod, a small cradle that holds the new Bold up horizontally and connects to the device via small "panels" on the 9700's sides.

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The BlackBerry Charge/Sync Pod is not new; RIM has made Charge Pods for nearly every trackball device since the original BlackBerry Pearl 8100. But the 9700 Sync Pod is different in that it uses the two metal panels found on the bottoms of both its left and right sides to not only transfer power, but data, according to ShopBlackBerry.

It's also notable, because even though the original Storm 9500/9530 Sync Pod could both charge and sync data between a BlackBerry and a PC, that product used the Storm's microUSB port to connect to the device. The Bold 9700 Sync Pod is the first BlackBerry pod to both charge and sync a non-touch-screen BlackBerry via side panels, according to RIM.

RIM has pinned a $39.99 price tag on the Bold 9700 Sync Pod, but it's still not shipping from ShopBlackBerry.com. The product is apparently in stock and shipping from the CrackBerry Shop, where you can pick up the Bold 9700 Sync Pod for just $24.95 plus shipping. I also found the 9700 Sync Pod listed as in stock on Amazon.com's online marketplace for $13.63, and I ordered one myself ... but I'm still waiting for it to arrive. (I'm looking at you, DBROTH.)

The technology used in the side panels is new -- to RIM at least -- and I'm anxious to see how it works. I'm a huge fan of the original BlackBerry Charge Pods, and this new enhancement should go a long way to making a good product even better.

Note: BlackBerry Charge/Sync Pods don't come with any power cords, USB, AC, car charger, or otherwise. So make sure you've got an extra charger or power cord handy before scooping one up.

Keep checking my CIO.com author page for a review of the Bold 9700 Sync Pod shortly after it arrives on my desk.

Sacco covers mobile and wireless technologies for CIO.com, an InfoWorld affiliate.


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