BT will be the first operator to offer BlackBerry handhelds in Europe.

The company will be offering the BlackBerry 7230 and 7730 handhelds initially. The BlackBerry wireless handhelds will be co-branded by both BlackBerry and BT.

BlackBerry devices offer always-on, wireless access to email and data, alongside integrated phone, text messaging, browser, calendar and organizer capabilities. They use an always-on 'push' technology. This means users don't have to periodically connect to email to check for new messages; as messages are automatically routed to the handheld.

Larry Conlee, chief operating officer of BlackBerry-maker, Research In Motion (RIM) said: "BT has a large corporate customer base with a strong support infrastructure and we are very pleased it has chosen to offer BlackBerry to its customers. Together, we can help mobile professionals achieve significant business and personal benefits through advanced connectivity solutions."

Pricing for the products - which are aimd at business customers, has not yet been announced.