RIM has announced a successor to its original Bold, launched way back in May of 2008, with the news that the Bold 9700 will soon be here. The handset closely resembles its predecessor, complete with fake leather battery cover and full QWERTY. However it's a little smaller and has a trackpad rather than the original's trackball.

There's a 480 x 360 display, 5.0 BlackBerry OS, Marvell Tavor processor, 256MB of memory, A-GPS, Wi-Fi and a 3.2-megapixel camera. RIM reckons the battery life will last 2 days, though, which would be impressive on a smartphone. It also has a microUSB port and 3.5mm headphone jack.

There's no word on what networks it'll be available on, or how much it'll cost but it'll be available from the start of November. We'll be getting some close-up photos and a first look at the device shortly, so if you have anything you'd particularly like us to check out, feel free to comment below.

UPDATE: Further to a news story on FoneHome, we've been able to independently confirm that Vodafone will be offering the new Bold from November at a £35 per month price point. Thanks to BobbyG for the comment.