BlackBerry 9800 can hold a Torch to the iPhone

Last week, I received a call from Research In Motion (RIM), and they asked whether or not I would be in New York on August 3rd.

Clearly, they have no idea that I live in Washington State, and that I make it to New York like I make it to the UK. When I asked the RIM PR person what is going on, they said that they couldn’t tell me.

However, I learned a day before that RIM and AT&T are the unveiling of the BlackBerry 9800, or Torch. It has some really cool specs like a 3.2 inch screen, 4GB microSD slot, Bluetooth 2.1, GPS, Wi-Fi, 3G, expandable memory or up to 32 GB, and a sliding QWERTY keyboard.

It is the first to have BlackBerry 6 OS with social feeds and views, universal search, as well as faster and richer web browsing. It also includes BlackBerry Messenger for a “real-time conversation experience”.

Another feature is the long-lasting battery. Talk time ranges from 5.5 hours on GSM and 5.8 hours on UMTS. Standby time is 18 days on GSM and 14 on UMTS. Music playtime is at 30 hours and video playback at 6 hours.

The device will be available from RIM and AT&T on August 12 for about $199.99 with a two-year contract. Watch out, iPhone, you might have just have some major competition here.