BlackBerry Z10 does away with the keyboard

With a touch screen and new operating system, will the BlackBerry Z10 replace the iPhone for some users?
BY JENNIFER PALMER jpalmer@opubco.com Modified: April 29, 2013 at 8:08 pm •  Published: April 30, 2013
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Give up my iPhone? This seems to be the bar set by smartphone users: Any alternative has to be good enough to give up their iPhone.

BlackBerry last month released its Z10 phone in the U.S., a touch-only device that doesn't have BlackBerry's typical keyboard. It features a new operating system, which will also be available on BlackBerry's Q10, a keyboard-equipped phone expected to be released by the end of May.

Sales of the Z10 have been weak, analysts say, and BlackBerry is counting on the Q10 to be a bigger hit, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The Z10 is available through AT&T for $199.99 with a two-year contract. (Verizon has it for the same price, and T-Mobile has it for $99.99.) The 4.2-inch display is crystal clear (and slightly larger than the iPhone 5), and it features an 8-megapixel camera with LED flash and up to 16 GB of internal memory storage.

My first impression handling the phone was the lack of a home button. To navigate the phone, users swipe in multiple directions to switch between displays. It didn't come naturally to me, but I'm sure you get used to it.

One swipe revealed the BlackBerry Hub, probably the coolest feature on the device. A red light alerts users to a new message or email, and in the Hub, social media and email is accessible from a single screen, eliminating the need to check Facebook, Twitter and email through separate apps.

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BlackBerry Z10 specs

Display size: 4.2 inches.

Resolution: 1280-by-768.

Battery life: up to 10 hours of talk time.

Weight: 4.8 ounces.

Internal storage: 16 GB.

Keyboard: Touch screen.

SOURCE: BlackBerry

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