BlackBerry in Vodafone's reach

Vodafone has entered the battle for the mobile data market, today announcing the launch of its first BlackBerry offering.Vodafone will start retailing the BlackBerry 7230 from June for AU$799.

Vodafone has entered the battle for the mobile data market, today announcing the launch of its first BlackBerry offering.

Vodafone will start retailing the BlackBerry 7230 from June for AU$799. The GPRS data device offers roaming connectivity throughout Australia and 13 countries around the world.

According to IDC analysts, the expiry on of the exclusive agreement between Telstra and wireless solutions manufacturer Research in Motion (RIM) this month opened the way for other providers to move into the BlackBerry market.

Vodafone has been open about its intentions; a spokesperson for the carrier last month said the company was "itching to get hold of the global product".

According to Vodafone the BlackBerry 7230 is "push-based". It allows emails to be directly delivered to the device without having to connect to a network each time.

The company says its product also delivers phone, SMS, internet browser and organiser functions with the ability to open attachments from various Microsoft and Adobe applications.

Telstra and Nokia are also in the process of releasing a new BlackBerry product as part of a joint venture the pair announced last month.