T-Mobile USA has just released a new version of the BlackBerry Curve. Its hardware and software has been updated, and offers a greater focus on consumers with mobile access to email, social networking sites, and music and video.

Like all Curve models, the 8520 has a slim design with a full QWERTY keyboard, but it also has a new touch-sensitive optical trackpad.

RIM BlackBerry Curve 8520Its keyboard makes it easier for users to type emails, text, and instant messages, and also update their Facebook and MySpace pages on the go.

In addition, the Curve 8520 offers multimedia capabilities and access to music, games, and other mobile apps. This is the first BlackBerry smartphone to feature dedicated media keys, while users are able to listen to audio via the 3.5 mm headset jack or over a Bluetooth connection.

BlackBerry Media Sync lets users sync music from iTunes or Windows Media Player with the smartphone.

On top of the built-in software, the Curve 8520 offers access to the new BlackBerry App World, which features a  growing catalog of third-party applications. Categories include games, entertainment, social networking and sharing, news and weather, productivity, and much more

Wireless Capabilities
This quad-band phone doesn't support T-Mobile's 3G service, but it does have Bluetooth 2.0 and Wi-Fi -- including support for this carrier's unlimited HotSpot calling service. It also supports the myFaves service.

Other features include a 2 MPx camera with video, and a microSD/SDHC memory card slot (1 GB card included).

Overall, this device is 4.3 inches tall, 2.4 inches wide, and 0.5 inches thick (109 mm by 60 mm by 13.9 mm). The weight is 3.7 ounces (106 grams).

Availability & Pricing
The new BlackBerry Curve 8520 is available now at T-Mobile.com, T-Mobile retail stores, and select authorized dealers, where it sells for $130 with a two-year agreement.

Wal-Mart, on the other hand, is offering a special deal: it has this smartphone for just $48.88 with contract. 

For more information, visit RIM.com.

Source: T-Mobile