Long gone are the days when BlackBerry seriously rivaled Apple and Samsung in the smartphone game. The company’s first ever Android handset, the Priv, today became available in the US and other territories – but early reviews suggest that BlackBerry remains behind the times.
The concept of the Priv is intriguing: an Android phone that, a rarity these days, comes with a physical keyboard. However, Gizmodo complains that “the tiny keys are hard to press—it’s more the sensation of button mashing than elegantly typing”. Similarly, Engadget deplores the absence of the “Classic” BlackBerry keyboard design, insisting that “Android alone can’t save the company”.
There are still some positive reactions – such as that of USA TODAY, which calls the Priv “a strong phone that may get more of you to give the fallen company another chance.” An unlocked Priv will, however, set each US buyer back $699; is there enough room for BlackBerry in the premium market?