BT bundles BlackBerry-like device with broadband

BT Group has launched a BlackBerry-style smart phone as part of its broadband deal in yet another attempt to establish a credible mobile offering. The BT2Go handsets enable users to surf the web, play music and make calls when not at home.

'Communications services are converging, and it is clear that customers want consistent access to the things that matter not only at home, but in the palm of their hands wherever they are,' Consumer managing director John Petter, said in a statement.

Consumers will have a choice of two smart phones from Taiwan-based High Tech Computer which will connect to the internet at broadband speeds and provide cheaper calls when in a WiFi hotspot, the report added.

The BlackBerry email device was originally popular with business executives but it is increasingly attracting a wider consumer market. However, James Barford, analyst at Enders Analysis, told The Financial Times, "The product does not have a clear target market. We do not see this product having mass-market appeal."

Previously BT had put great emphasis on its Bluetooth-based Fusion converged offer for the home. After much delay, an enforced change of name from BluePhone and an embarrassing lack of WiFi, the service was finally launched in 2005. It attracted only 42,000 subscribers