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.
The camera shoots great photos, and the screen quality is amazing — although I'm comparing it to my old iPhone 3GS and its 3-megapixel camera.
If you're toting the latest iPhone, it will be comparable with a slightly larger screen.
But one peek into the BlackBerry World app store, and I knew it just couldn't replace my iPhone. The lack of apps (especially free or cheap apps) is stunning when you are used to Apple. My two boys, who are 4 and 2 years old, wanted to try out the phone as well, and I struggled to find a game for them to play. “Angry Birds Star Wars” was only fun for a minute. I'm not trading in my iPhone just yet.
BlackBerry Z10 specs