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Meh

Their PlayBook tablet is winning fans, but BlackBerry maker RIM is best known for smartphones, and its last couple of models - the touchscreen Storm and the sliding Torch - were criticised for being underpowered. So RIM - Research in Motion to their parents - really needed to ramp up the specs on their next model to win back some fans in the tech world.

Oh well, it would have been nice. Instead, the Dakota - RIM's new handset, details of which were leaked today - seems another slowcoach. The Dakota pairs Blackberry's customary 'Qwerty candybar' shape with a finger-friendly capacitive touchscreen, a combination many will find attractive. But with 768MB of RAM against the iPhone 4 and modern Android handsets' 1GB, and a mere 4GB of on-board storage - against the iPhone 5's rumoured 64GB - it's hard to see the Dakota winning over those who've left BlackBerry behind for newer smartphone brands.

'These specs are definitely head and shoulders above all other BlackBerry specs, but compared to the current crop of Androids, Windows Phone 7s, iPhones—heck, even Nokia's N-Series, the specs just aren't getting me excited,' said Kat Hannaford of Gizmodo. 'Sorry RIM, but while I still love the quality of your phone builds, I'm looking for something more in my relationships.'

Perhaps RIM will follow up the Dakota with a model that'll really get our juices flowing - but we're not holding our breath.

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