Amid falling tariffs and increasing popularity of 3G services, Canadian handset maker Research in Motion, on Friday, launched 3G-compatible BlackBerry Curve 9320 smartphone, priced at Rs.15,990 in the country.

The new smartphone features all the core BlackBerry messaging and social-centric features that keep people connected and offers global 3G connectivity, RIM says in a statement.

“The BlackBerry Curve series is extremely popular and successful in India. This new model is designed to make it easy for customers to be socially-connected, and we expect it will be especially popular in the youth segment,” Research In Motion India Managing Director Sunil Dutt said.

Based on the BlackBerry 7.1 operating system, the handset also comes with a built-in FM radio and a better battery life, which offers customers up to seven hours of talk time. The integrated camera includes a flash and supports video recording.

Recently, Bharti Airtel and Idea Cellular have slashed 3G prices by up to 70 per cent, while Reliance Communications also joined the league to cut prices by up to 61 per cent from their existing rates.

The tariff plans are aimed at making internet usage within the reach of rural, mid-town customers at home and help first time users experience the benefits of 3G, the operators have said.

The government had received over Rs.67,000 crore from the 3G auctions held in 2010.

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