Sprint to sell new BlackBerry Curve 9350 starting Sept. 9

Sprint will sell the 9350 for $80, after rebate

Sprint announced it will start selling RIM's new BlackBerry Curve 9350 smartphone on Sept. 9 for $79.99, after rebate.

Research In Motion announced the Curve 9350 and two similar Curve smartphones earlier Tuesday, saying that the new models could be affordable choices for people upgrading from lower-end feature phones or older Curve smartphones.

AT&T and Verizon might also sell one of the new Curves, but Verizon did not comment and AT&T said it had nothing to announce today.

Sprint also said that its business customers may qualify to purchase the 9350 for $49.99 after a $50 rebate. The carrier pitched the new device as "slim and stylish" and noted that it runs on the BlackBerry 7 operating system.

All of the carriers offer a wide range of prices on BlackBerry devices, with occasional big discounts, even two-for-one promotions.

Still, $80 for a new BlackBerry would be at the low end of what smartphones are selling for these days; prices can range from $150 to $200 for smartphones that have 1GHz processors and offer high-end functions.

All of the major carriers, including Sprint, subsidize the cost of new phones in hopes of signing up customers to two-year contracts.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen, or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed. His email address is mhamblen@computerworld.com.

Copyright © 2011 IDG Communications, Inc.

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