by Al Sacco

RIM BlackBerry Bold 9000 NA Pricing: Slew of Options from $200 to $800

Oct 31, 20083 mins
Data Center

After countless delays and even more hype, Research In Motion’s (RIM) high-end BlackBerry Bold 9000 smartphone will soon hit the United States. Depending on where you look, interested parties can expect to pay as little as $299 on contract and as much as $799 without one. That’s quite the pricing disparity with many a price point in between…

The BlackBerry Bold 9000 has been available in Canada since August, and as of today, Canadians can reportedly secure a Bold for as little $199 with a three-year Rogers contract. Even folks in such obscure countries as Bahrain have been able to score Bolds, but RIM’s new flagship smartphone isn’t yet available in the company’s largest market: The United States.

image of the RIM BlackBerry Bold 9000 with the 8820 and Pearl 8220 Flip
BlackBerry Bold 9000 with 8820 and Pearl Flip

Mercifully Thankfully, that’s about to change: Earlier this week, AT&T announced that it will become the first U.S. carrier to sell the Bold on November 4 for $299 along with a two-year contract and after a $100 rebate. That means Americans will have to shell out $400 and consent to the AT&T shackles for two years to score RIM’s latest offering—at least through AT&T itself.

Luckily, there are plenty of additional pricing options for wannabe Bold owners in North America, ranging from $199 with a two-year Rogers contract at Canadian Best Buy Mobile locales–that also reportedly includes a $50 gift card—to $799 for an unlocked device (that can be used on a variety of GSM networks) with no contract, through CompUSA.

Rogers is also currently offering a $299.99 Bold with a three-year contract; a $599.99 Bold with two-year contact; and a contract-free—but locked—Bold for $649.99.

Best Buy stores in the United States will sell the BlackBerry Bold 9000 off contract for a less than CompUSA, at $659.99, and AT&T will offer the contract-free Bold for a bit cheaper still, at $549.99.

I first got my hands on the Bold way back in May at RIM’s Wireless Enterprise Symposium (WES), where the device was initially unveiled. At that point, it was assumed that AT&T would be the first carrier to get the Bold—all the RIM staffers with Bolds were using AT&T at that event—and I was told that it would likely sell for between $300 and $400. A couple of months later, I predicted that the device would sell for $350 with a two-year AT&T contract.

What I didn’t predict at the time was that the device would be delayed in the United States until November and that you’d be able to choose between so many different pricing schemes when it finally landed. (I still think AT&T would’ve charged more for the Bold if its U.S. launch hadn’t been bumped so many months…)

If you’re a BlackBerry user with your eye on the Bold, how do you plan to purchase it and through which channels? I was lucky enough to get a Bold from RIM at the BlackBerry Developer Conference; so fortunately, I don’t have to make that decision…yet. policy says I can’t accept gadgets from vendors, and that means I’ll be returning or donating the device, at which point I’ll very likely be lining up at an AT&T store to buy another. Or maybe I’ll just wait for the BlackBerry “Magnum”…