This morning I received an email from a friend of a friend that asked me my thoughts on the BlackBerry Z10 and BlackBerry 10. I'd like to share that email with you, as well as my rather extensive response. We'll call this my full review of both the phone and the new BlackBerry operating system.
Hello, I am emailing to get your opinion on the new BLACKBERRY Z10... I know that the app store is not good right which not really a problem, because when Android and Apple first came out they didn't many apps either... Right now I am wanting a overall opinion of the phone from hardware to software, to compare to other device that I have had already.. I have had every android and all of the newer IPhone 4, 4s, 5 devices.... I'm an old BlackBerry geek that left when the Android phone came out.. I do a lot of texting emails, surf the web, taking pictures, games, and other stuck.. so if Sprint gets this BB10 Z10 I will renew my contact. I am just wanting someone over all good opinions about the phone first hand.
Thanks for emailing me! I'm glad to know that you're thinking of rejoining Team BlackBerry!
I think it's interesting that you've jumped from one phone to the next. I've seen that happen a lot with people who have Android, mainly because there's typically a new top-tier Android on the market every month or two. Apple has a similar problem, in that their products only have a one year shelf life and as soon as the newest iPhone comes out, you're pretty much considered a social pariah if you're still rocking last year's model. Sure that's the case with most technologies, but more so with Apple.
I'd like to address your comment about the app selection on BlackBerry. When the Z10 was released a couple of weeks ago, there were over 70,000 apps available in BlackBerry World. While that's still a long ways off from the gazillion that iTunes and the Google Play store have, it is still worth pointing out that when the first iPhone was released there were less than 100 apps in iTunes, and when Android first launched, there were less than 1000.
Ok I'll be honest, the quality of app selection is not that great right now. BlackBerry went with quantity over quality, however there is still an incredible selection of some of the best apps on the market, with many more in talks to be ported or created for the platform. In a couple of months time, app selection will no longer be a huge downside to having a BlackBerry device.
I'm assuming you've read my first impressions for both the Z10 hardware and BlackBerry 10 software, but I will gladly give you a second thought on both since I've had more time to play with the phone since writing those articles.
The Z10 is an amazing device. Feels great in the hand, fits perfectly, and I'm comfortable using it with only one hand. The screen is beautiful; at times I find myself pulling it out just too look at the screen. Text on the screen jumps out at me and looks clean and crisp, pictures are rich and detailed, video is great as well, even when I have it connected to my TV thru HDMI. The camera is the best I've ever used, although I've had nothing but BlackBerry, so that's not too much to brag about. It's still a great camera though. There's an awesome feature that lets you move the focus area to anywhere on the screen and it snaps photos very quickly. I would like the speaker to be a little louder when I'm listening to music, but that's easy enough to work around with headphones or portable speakers.
BlackBerry 10 is really a very different world from the older legacy BlackBerry smartphones. I was using a friend's Curve 8330 last night and I was amazed at how far the OS has come and how radically different everything really is. To say that BB10 is smooth is an understatement. It took me a couple days to adapt to the Peek, Flow, and Hub features, but now I zoom around on my phone like I've been using it for years. It becomes second nature in no time.
Since the phone has 2GB of RAM, that means it's pretty fast. My phone has yet to freeze or lock up yet, and I like to think I put it through the ringer quite a bit.
The phone's web browser is also the best that BlackBerry has ever had. The only thing that makes it feel like a mobile browser is the fact that I'm a much smaller screen, other than that it might as well be a desktop browser.
Once upon a time I used to think that I would never enjoy a touchscreen keyboard. They're confusing, difficult to type on, and the keys are always all kinds of wonky and prone to mistakes. I've since changed my mind with the Z10 and BlackBerry 10. It truly is the best touchscreen keyboard you'll find on any smart phone anywhere. Bar none the absolute best. My favorite feature is how it knows what I'm trying to say better than my fingers do, and auto corrects my mistakes with unbelievable accuracy.
Ok so I've spent this entire email singing the praises of BlackBerry, and that's understandable because I'm probably the biggest BB fan you'll ever meet. However, the phone and the OS are not perfect yet. There are features from older versions of BlackBerry OS that I miss and I'm having a hard time adapting to the change. At the top of the list is email notifications. BlackBerry 10 switched it from the instantaneous Push email that would alert me the moment I received an email to Pull, which checks my email every X number of minutes and sends them all together.
I hope this long winded email answered your questions, and more importantly that you've made it this far in to my rambling. I really think you would enjoy the Z10. BlackBerry is back in a whole new way, and it's infinitely better. I think if you got your hands on the Z10, after two weeks you wouldn't find yourself switching from platform to the next every few months.
If you have any other questions you'd like to ask me, please feel free. I'm an open book.