Similar in many ways to Research in Motion's BlackBerry 7750 that's also carried by Verizon Wireless, the RIM BlackBerry 7250 is a dual-band (CDMA 800/1900) smart phone that offers some significant improvements over its predecessor, while keeping the basic features that BlackBerry fans have grown to love. You still get on-the-go access to enterprise e-mail, contacts and calendar information, a Web browser, and a full QWERTY keyboard. At $399.99 (with a one-year contract), however, the 7250 is on the expensive side.

Upside: If there's a downside to the 7750, it's the device's lack of Bluetooth support. Fortunately, the 7250 addresses this issue by integrating Bluetooth for headsets and car kits. Additionally, the 7250 has more storage capability than its older sibling, shipping with a relatively large 32MB of flash memory as well as 4MB of SRAM. Of course, the 7250 boasts support for up to 10 personal and business e-mail accounts and comes with a removable battery.

Downside: Unfortunately, not all needed improvements from the 7750 were addressed. Similar to the earlier model, the 7250 lacks a speakerphone--a necessity for a business-friendly device. Additionally, because the new BlackBerry is a bit smaller than its predecessor, its 65,000-color screen is consequently downsized and displays only three rows of icons instead of four. And on the performance side, the rated talk time of up to 3.3 hours and a standby time of eight days are less than what we had hoped.

Outlook: Criticisms aside, the fact remains that the RIM BlackBerry 7250 will no doubt be a popular device. For BlackBerry users who prefer the full QWERTY keyboard as opposed to the SureType technology found on handsets such as the RIM BlackBerry 7100g, the 7250 is a great way to go. Though the smart phone scene is growing increasingly crowded, look for the 7250 to rival other Bluetooth-enabled handsets.