BlackBerry Priv is making a huge buzz online not only because of its unique form thanks to its sliding keyboard, but also because it is BlackBerry's first smartphone to officially run on Android, which is a good thing actually.
According to Gadgets 360, BlackBerry CEO John Chen has recognized the fact that the app ecosystem of BlackBerry 10 failed to impress users and lure them to the platform. Hence, as stated by the site, Chen revealed that the only way to resolve the shortcomings of BlackBerry's OS was to have "an Android device preloaded with BlackBerry suite of apps."
However, Chen said that the decision to create a full-Android smartphone was not an easy one, but it had to be done to address the biggest marketing problem of the company: the scarcity of apps and games Android-biased consumers are looking for when purchasing smartphones.
The BlackBerry CEO also revealed that the company took note of what happened to Amazon's Fire phone which even offers thousands of Android-based apps.
With Amazon Fire phone's failure, BlackBerry opted to give its best shot of reviving its smartphone-manufacturing business by creating a Android-based device that still captures the essence of the BlackBerry phones.
Nevertheless, the success or failure of the BlackBerry Priv could be the key determinant on whether BlackBerry needs to finally pull the plug on its hardware development business in the next fiscal year, as noted by the Toronto Sun.
Last week, the relentless rumors of BlackBerry cooking a touchscreen smartphone with sliding QWERTY keypad have finally been confirmed, but instead of having BlackBerry Venice as its name based on speculations, the Waterloo, Canada-headquartered company gave the handset a fancier name, the BlackBerry Priv, which is just a shortcut of the words privilege and privacy.
The BlackBerry Priv slider smartphone has a 5.5-inch display with curve sides similar to the curved edges of Samsung's Galaxy S6 Edge.
It is said to run on a Hexa-core 64-bit Snapdragon 808 SoC clocked at 1.8 GHz. The handset is expected to arrive in the market with 3GB of RAM, an 18-megapixel back camera and a 5-megapixel front shooter.
Meanwhile, Chen became the subject of scrutiny over the weekend when he appeared to be clueless on how to use the new smartphone during the first official demo of the device.
Fortune even noted that the demo was "uncomfortable to sit through" since Chen did not only look awkward when trying to boast the slider keypad, he also struggled to open Google Chrome until finally admitting that what he had in his hands was just a "demo unit."