By Patrick Avenell

Vodafone has today revised its Australian release date for the BlackBerry Storm PDA device, pushing the retail release back four days.

The new model, which has become a much desired gadget since its launch earlier this year, was originally set to go on sale on Monday 1 December, with the telecommunications carrier blaming the delay in release date on “unprecedented demand”. The device will now be sold at retail level on Friday 5 December.

Customers who pre-registered for the BlackBerry Storm will still get their model before retail consumers, with handset set to be received on Thursday 4 December. Additionally, these online customers will also receive a free 8-gigabyte microSD card.

“BlackBerry Storm has sparked the imagination and anticipation of Vodafone customers around the world,” said Vodafone Australia CEO Russell Hewitt.

“In the UK, we’ve been selling a Vodafone Storm every 13 seconds, and on the basis of demand from our pre-registration process, which is well into the thousands, we’re expecting demand to be just as hot here in Australia.”

Under the pricing plan released last week, customers can purchase a BlackBerry Storm device free on plans ranging from $69 per month to $149 per month.