There is an almighty buzz in the tech world after a very fortunate Vietnamese, Bah Minh Duc released photos, of a mobile phone he claimed is the Blackberry Venice. What is significant amount the Blackberry Venice is that it is the first android-based smartphone to be released by Blackberry. This must be a very big shock to Blackberry fanboys who would have staked an arm that Blackberry will never go the Android route.
The photos, in Mr Duc’s facebook update, show a phone with a rough backplate presumably made that way to make it easier to handle or to put it another way, to make it hard to slip off your palms while you are holding it. If those pictures are to be believed, and why not since it is a common practice by OEMs to ‘leak’ their upcoming devices in unusual places, the Blackberry Venice would come with a curved display like the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge which is not making the expected waves in the market Samsung hoped for. Maybe the makers of the Blackberry Venice did not get the memo from consumers who bought the curvy-screened Samsung S6 edge.
Depending on how you draw conclusions from just looking at photos, the Blackberry Venice has either an 18MP camera or a 16MP camera with fast auto focus and dual flashes. The power button has being moved to the side, which is another design change from blackberry.
One of the biggest design shift in the Blackberry Venice is the fact that the makers of the device have embraced duality in terms of the keyboard. The Venice comes with a virtual keyboard and a physical qwerty keyboard which can be used by sliding it out from a its niche at the at the bottom of the phone. The incorporation of the qwerty keyboard had the effect of making the Blackberry Venice a bit bulky. A far cry from the from the 3D renders of the phone which was a rather slim affair like Blackberry 10. Hopefully, the final release of the Blackberry Venice would not be this thick. This device must be a way to test how the market reacts to the phone.
The biggest and most surprising change in the Blackberry Venice is comfortably hidden in the software. For the first time ever, the Waterloo, Ontario, Canada based company, is going with the Android operating system. While the operating system is the much liked Android, the Blackberry Venice smartphone did not do away with some of the popular services that made the Blackberry smartphone a handy device to have. So for the price of one, you get an android phone with all of its flexibility in terms of apps, themes and upgrades on one hand and a blackberry device with its trusted hardware and top-notch security features on the other hand.
Writing about Blackberry can sometimes be like writing about a dinosaur that just refuses to be finally extinct. The demise of the handsets makers has long being predicted, but so far they have hung in there. The Blackberry Venice seems liked one of the rabbits they are pulling out of their business hats to reclaim their position as one of the dominant players in the smartphone market.
Whether this move would work out for them remains to be seen. But the fact that they decided to join the Android train proves that Blackberry is willing to do anything to survive. Even if it means swallowing the huge Android humble pie