BlackBerry 10: Bringing excitement back to mobile

BlackBerry 10: Bringing excitement back to mobile

Summary: The mobile space has been coasting along at an even keel for a while. The new BlackBerry looks to bring the excitement back.


The appearance of the original iPhone shook the mobile world up big-time. The new interface by Apple brought the sophisticated smartphone to the regular crowd. Android appeared shortly after, and kept the excitement going in mobile. Consumers had a choice in smartphones like never before--and it was good.

Then Apple and Android stopped implementing major innovation. Both iOS and Android kept getting better, but without raising the bar to get consumers excited again. The innovation kept coming on the hardware side, but the software just improved incrementally.

Windows Phone appeared, and while the software was new and fresh, it didn't seem to capture the attention of the mass market. Some folks got excited by the new platform, but it didn't seem to capture the imagination of the masses.

That may soon change with the imminent release of BlackBerry 10. Early leaks of the OS show that RIM is definitely bringing the BlackBerry into the modern age. The UI looks fresh and smartly designed, and this may get the BlackBerry enthusiasts of old excited once again.

The German video above shows the smart way that BlackBerry 10 uses swiping to make major smartphone functions just a slide away. Everything is where you expect it to be and always just out of sight until you want it. The way screens smoothly slide is a thing of beauty and highly functional.

BlackBerry 10 is definitely looking good. Will it be enough to get RIM back in the game? It's too early to tell, but it does look like BlackBerry 10 could be bringing some needed excitement back to mobile.

See also:

Topics: Smartphones, BlackBerry

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  • Back in a big way

    Ive been following this very closely over the past few years. Considering all that RIM has done, purchasing various key companies to put together BB10, efforts made to stock the app store (will have 70,000 at launch), demoting the 2 former CEO's, the massive marketing investment that will start any day. I personally think if RIM cant make a huge comeback then no one can. I personally think they will
    • Big way to which generation?

      It will be difficult to get people under 30yr old to let their iPhone, Android or even Windows phone for BB. Previous limited BlackBerry phones gave it a more business/corporate feel. Younger generations like fancy, cool, up to date…well iPhone UI is no longer on the up to date category but it’s marketing makes up for it. BB looks to be a good phone for corporate/government officials AND let’s face it old dogs.

      BB to the new generation is dead. BB will need to make some come back on some Blockbuster movie to get attention across all generations.
      • May be not dead, but such glorifying review as this German guy did make ill

        ... service to BlackBerry.

        For example, the guy does not mention that BB UI is less fluid comparing to iPhone. Also, that the devices recognized touches less accurately. Or that you have to know where to pull the screen to have this or that UI function -- which is visible in iOS (like tapping on message on the top of the screen), a more intuitive way. Or that this device is wider, so you can not really use it one-handed without second hand or at least some movements in your palm to reach UI elements.

        Also, this German guys makes it sound as if iPhone can not have corporate business applications, even though it can, and this is how Apple enjoys 95% adoption rate of iOS devices among Fortune 500 companies. Companies can create their own applications and distribute them over its devices, as well as pushing profiles, settings, and so on. And all of this works without EVER depending on some Canadian (id est foreign for every other country of the world) servers which go dark for days every year.
        • Ah, the old "waving of the hands - trust me - ios is better"

          "BB UI is less fluid comparing to iPhone"

          Yes, less fluid. For sure. Uh huh. And iphone is less fluid than WP8. How do I know? Because I stated it. Just like you did.

          "the devices recognized touches less accurately"

          Yes, this was clearly based on your extensive hands-on use with BB10 devices.

          "which is visible in iOS (like tapping on message on the top of the screen), a more intuitive way"

          Yes, double clicking the home screen to bring up a list of apps is so intuitive. Long tapping on an icon to move it is so visible on the screen in ios. Oh wait, neither of those are true.

          "you can not really use it one-handed without second hand"

          But you guys said that anything bigger than 3.5" couldn't be used without a second hand. You promised us. When the iphone 5 came out at 4", suddenly everyone's thumb grew longer?

          DRESS, you are why everyone hates apple users.
        • The BB name is dead among the younger gen.

          If you pay attention to the youngsters you will notice they all carry either the iPhone, Android or Window phones because that is what you see in movies/shows except for Windows phones. Most of the time they will not remember what existed before...anything...unless it was cool and BB was not a cool device so it really never got their attention.

          'Companies can create their own applications and distribute them over its devices, as well as pushing profiles, settings, and so on.' This is the reason why Android/Linux is adopted everywhere because you can do whatever you please with it.
          • Nope...

            Just one year ago the London riots made a big deal of the bbm communication. All the bb devices I see on the bus/tube are in the hand of youngsters. You forget, they are cheap. It's not so easy for a 15 year old to get a £200+ phone. Then there's the amount of hand me down devices from parents. Bb even targeted them with color cases on what were designed to be business phones. They play songs, have some games and send free messages. Sure android is taking their place, but the kids definitely know what they are.
          • Kids and BB's because they are cheap

            The only reason kiddies have Blackberry's, is because they are cheap with unlimited BBM in the contract, compared to the cost of SMS texts. Revenue off this market demographic is pitiful.

            The new generation is migrating to iMessage on IOS, and similar on Android/WP for the same reason.

            You can get a Galaxy Ace Generation 2 for similar price to a Blackberry Pay as you go these days...
        • " Companies can create their own applications and distribute them..."

          Yes, but companies need to use another application (ie Mobile Iron) to support service and apps to the iPhone. Where BB uses BES, and a company can fully lock down or open the device as they see fit.
  • People didn't buy Blackberries because they looked cool

    had apps, or did tons of things, they bought it for the messaging aspect of it.

    Now with so many other phones offering that, will it really get people to drop iPhone, Windows or Android for it?
    William Farrel
  • go BB

    I hope BB does succeed to put the nail in the coffin for windows phone, but I really don't think your assessment of android is true. What about google-now which just won innovation of the year at popular science. Sure BB may have a few new UI ideas but so didn't windows phone. Smooth swiping animations is by now a given and that means little. It comes down to apps, ecosystem and function. Every day I still marvel at the utility of my aging galaxy nexus and there's really nothing else it needs except continuing refinement is nice. But yet I still am very excited about getting perhaps a galaxy note II someday and the release of 1080p devices and phablets.
    I am even more excited about google glasses and I believe that is the next big innovation for android.
  • corporate users

    have different requirements for a phone than consumers. RIM is the only phone maker solidly focused on business users. I hope they succeed.
    • Exactly!!

      That's why my company still supports RIM. At the moment I have the BB Bold 9700 and it does what I NEED it to do.
      Arm A. Geddon
    • Indeed. . .

      Just because a consumer technology seems neat or cool doesn't mean it should have a place within your IT infrastructure.
  • good to see there is a 3rd alternative to challenge ios & Android

    BB is back to the game, we have now a 3 horses race market, ios/android/BB, and some minor contenders (Bada, W8, Symbian).
    • There is a 3rd contender: Windows 8

      I still see Blackberry declining, in my opinion. I haven't heard of too many people clamering for a new Blackberry model if any.
      • Re: There is a 3rd contender: Windows 8

        Windows 8 doesn't run on phones.
  • Nice, the amazing battery pull feature still exists.

    I miss constant crashing and freeze ups.

    Why didn't he power them up at the same time, I sooooo hated the 10 minute bootup on BB's.

    I wish them luck, but they better pack 5 times the cpu power in the thing, they soooo underestimate what then needed in the past.
    • Different OS and kernel

      The new BB OS 10 is NOT the old BB OS 5/6/7 that was based on java. version 10 is based on QNX that was an acquisition many years ago.
      QNX is unix based.

      Your fodder is just some of the typical fanboi hate that goes along with the apple and droid topics.
      • The Blackberry Playbook...

        ...which has Blackberry Tablet (QNX) OS, the basis for Blackberry 10 OS, also takes a long time to boot. I should know because I own one.

        The flip side is the user interface on the Playbook is very good (very similar to webOS and somewhat similar to Windows 8 on non-smartphones) and easy to use. The primary weakness is the browser is sometimes slow (and the lack of apps). Despite that flaw, it is actually my second favorite mobile OS, behind Windows Phone 7 (don't have a Windows Phone 8 OS device yet). It is a major, major improvement over the "traditional" Blackberry OS.

        Hopefully both Windows Phone 8 OS and Blackberry 10 OS can flourish and Apple can bring some good innovations to iOS (which is still very good IMO but getting long in tooth). I'm not an Android OS fan based on my user experience, but even Android 4.x has seen some major improvements over Android 2.2/2.3 and hopefully those improvements can continue too.
  • What is your definition of mass market?

    "Windows Phone appeared and while the software was new and fresh it didn't seem to capture the attention of the mass market."

    10s of millions of WP8 sales in 1 quarter and that isn't mass market? Let me guess, the definition of the mass market is 1 sale more than what WP8 achieved?

    Nicely done James, nicely done.