The BlackBerry Priv, initially available for £549 on Pay As You Go and the first to run Android OS with BlackBerry's proprietary security software, is no longer the company's sole staging point to renew its offensive on the smartphone market after the near-fall of BB10 OS. BlackBerry has since launched the DTEK50 which is priced at £275 and comes with stock Android 6.0 Marshmallow OS along with BlackBerry's Full Enterprise Mobility Management Support which will be a boon for corporate users.
Everything BlackBerry on Android! We'll have that!
It remains to be seen how the price cut will affect sales of the Priv. BlackBerry's market share in device sales hasn't really been bolstered by the flagship and it has been eclipsed by a number of new phones launched so far this year. Despite the company's continued attempts at increasing device sales, BlackBerry has taken other steps to ensure that its balance sheets aren't dependent on device sales alone.
As has been made quite clear by the company, BlackBerry's renewed offensive at the smartphone market isn't based on devices alone. Even though improved sales of the Priv and healthy demand for the just-launched DTEK50 will do the company a world of good, BlackBerry recently launched the BlackBerry® Hub+ for Android to let people experience the software on any Android phone running Android 6.0 Marshmallow OS.
Among the services that the BlackBerry® Hub+ for Android will bring to you is the Hub itself which will let you compose emails and posts on social media, respond to messages, select email recipients from phone contacts, manage your folders and search for contacts, messages and emails effortlessly. The service will also include a Calendar, a password keeper, a place to save all your contacts, a task manager, a device search mechanism to search for emails, contacts, messages or songs, a Note keeper and a BlackBerry launcher to let you organise apps, widgets and shortcuts. Basically you'll get a BlackBerry experience without having to buy a BlackBerry phone.
BlackBerry DTEK50: All you need to know
BlackBerry's decision to lunch the Hub came not long after COO Marty Beard dispelled all doubts on the future of BlackBerry 10 OS. "I made the rounds the past couple of days with the press to set the record straight, and the message was this – BlackBerry is not backing away from BB10. Our customers depend on the BB10 platform and they are the ones that drive our roadmap," he wrote.
In case you like the price tag and would love to take a look at the Priv, you should know that it comes with a 5.4-inch Quad HD Plastic AMOLED display, a slide-out physical keyboard along with a virtual one if you don't like using it too much, an extremely grip-able membrane like woven material on its back, Android Lollipop OS along with a few pre-installed BlackBerry apps like BlackBerry Hub, BBM and DTEK security, an 18-MP rear camera with OIS, Phase Detect Auto Focus (PDAF), Fast focus lock, HDR, 6-element f2.2 lens and Back Side Illumination (BSI2) Stacked Sensor.
In terms of internal specifications, BlackBerry Priv comes with a Snapdragon 808 processor, a monster 3,410 mAh battery, 3GB RAM and an 18MP primary camera. The Priv is also available on Pay Monthly and Pay As You Go deals at Carphone Warehouse, Clove, Mobile Phones Direct and Unlocked Mobiles. The Leap, Passport and Classic which run pure BB10 OS are also available for £195, £425 and £385 respectively.