Review BlackBerry Priv: the best Android phone with a physical keyboard

Review BlackBerry Priv: the best Android phone with a physical keyboard

Review BlackBerry Priv: the best Android phone with a physical keyboard

Priv BlackBerry, the Canadian company first joins the world’s most popular mobile operating system, but retains their successful features to engage Android and differentiate a bit of competition.

Its 5.4-inch screen is beautiful, good performance, the right camera and the experience is good enough to satisfy many.

The combination offered by the BlackBerry Priv works, but comes at a very competitive market. If security is your priority, not a physical QWERTY keyboard, it is difficult to opt for the BlackBerry Priv considering its high price.

Phones like the Samsung Galaxy Note 5 and Nexus  6P offer a better package for its price.

Price and Availability BlackBerry Priv

The BlackBerry Priv is available in the US for $ 699 as an unlocked and free phone (no contract). AT&T was the first operator announced that it will sell with a two-year contract for $ 249 or financing plans from US $ 24.67 per month. Verizon followed suit, saying they will be selling the BlackBerry Priv in the future.

BlackBerry Priv has a relatively attractive design with a smooth back that has a curve at its edges that makes you feel good in the hand, despite having a screen of 5.4 inches. The screen also has a slight curve at its edges, similar to the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge +, but less pronounced and its design draws less attention – unless you have opened the keyboard.

Review BlackBerry Priv: the best Android phone with a physical keyboard

Also, this screen has a resolution QHD (2,560×1,440 pixels), the same that has the Galaxy Note 5, the Galaxy S6 Edge, the Moto X Pure Edition / LG Style or G4. Plastic AMOLED screen offers vibrant colors, good detail of the text and objects, as well as a good level of brightness. Also, you can turn the screen with just two taps him.

At the bottom of the screen is a horn that covers the entire bottom of the front panel, but not at the same level of the screen – unless the display stands. From there, you can slide the screen up to reveal a hidden keyboard that has the popular BlackBerry keyboard layout.

Although slide the screen up from the edge seems to be the logical choice, most of the time ended up sliding the screen directly from the touch screen because the size of the cell, usually my thumb does not reach this position naturally. This can sometimes lead to open or select content inadvertently while trying to slide the screen to get the physical keyboard.

Moreover, at the left edge you find the power button, while the right edge find the volume buttons, as well as a button to mute your microphone when you are in a call.



At the rear there is a 18 megapixel camera with Schneider Kreuznach lens and flash twice. In the top slot for the SIM card and microSD card slot is located, while at the bottom the 3.5mm headphone jack and microUSB that allows you to upload or download files with a computer is.

Physical QWERTY keyboard

The physical QWERTY keyboard feels good to the touch of the hand and its design means that it can distinguish the keys without looking at them. Moreover, the process of sliding the keyboard or screen feels solid – and even fun – so expect mechanism will provide good durability.

However, the “D” button is the only one with a point underscored that allows better distinguish the location of your fingers, but this point does not stand out much, nor the keys. I wish the keys had scored a little more design so that they can distinguish more easily, although it is equally astonishing that BlackBerry has been able to include a slide-out keyboard in a device that is not too thick (9.4mm).

Review BlackBerry Priv: the best Android phone with a physical keyboard

The physical keyboard also has capacitive functions. You can slide your finger over the keys to navigate through the different screens, as well as loss through the page or navigate an app. Plus, the keyboard lets you delete words you’re writing with the swipe of your finger once, lets you control the cursor to navigate through each letter of what you’re writing to give two taps and slide your finger over the keyboard and allows you to select words Suggested when you are writing text by sliding your finger from the bottom up in the location of the word that suggests (left, center or right).

These functions are really useful, especially because the screen is farther from your fingertips than normal, so it is not necessary to write to maneuver both the physical keyboard and control what happens on the touchscreen.

Even with these good features integrated BlackBerry, you cannot select and open apps directly from the keyboard, but you can press a key to search the app and open it without using the touch screen.

Overall, the keyboard was helpful, but since I’m used to write on touch screens in the cell, I feel more comfortable to write on the screen. Although usually I make more mistakes typing on the virtual keyboard on the screen, the self-correcting system help with this problem.

I believe BlackBerry Priv keyboard is an excellent choice for you are accustomed to using the physical keyboard, the miss or need one in a cell.

Review BlackBerry Priv: the best Android phone with a physical keyboard

BlackBerry manufacturer wants to become the Android mobile insurance. Whether you are your bank statements, a simple selfie, BlackBerry encrypts information you have on the BlackBerry Priv, while also optimized the hardware and software to provide a higher level of security for the protection of malware.

It also integrates BlackBerry app DTEK that educates and informs you about the security and privacy you have on your BlackBerry Priv.

DTEK is the general security you have, calling them visually if your security is good or bad. The app recommends how to improve your security alerts notifies you and lets you control the permissions each app (location, contacts, camera, text, microphone, videos, etc.) and shows you when the app uses any permit, details of such access and allows you to take any action with respect to that.

The BlackBerry Priv runs Android 5.1 Lollipop, but the company has said it will upgrade to Android 6.0 Marshmallow in the future. With this, you have access to the Google Play Store and its wide variety of apps – something beyond the ecosystem that previously were in BlackBerry phones.

The interface is almost pure same interface found in phones like the Motorola Moto X Pure Edition or the Nexus 6, but has more changes. This does not mean that customization of the interface is reaching a level which Samsung offers, but is remarkable.

The interface retains some traditional icons of Android, virtually the same quick settings, notifications, menus, settings and Android navigation keys on the screen that Google has in the pure version of Android Lollipop.

However, notifications have a new section in the middle of notifications panel and Quick Sets that offers a summary of notifications that you have – represented in the app icon and the number of notifications. Also, you can select one of these icons to show you only the notifications that app, while other hidden temporarily.

Recent apps screen has a different design that resembles a mosaic. Each app is shown in a table and four random sizes. There seems to be a pattern set in which you select the size of each app, which makes this screen is a little confusing.

Moreover, my drawer is divided into three sections: applications, widgets and shortcuts. At the top you find a field that searches among the three sections and lets you add an app, widgets and shortcuts to keep it pressed to drag on the Home screen.

The volume controls and Call app are no major changes compared to what you find in a cell with pure Android interface.

Also, you can hold down the Home button to open Google Now by sliding your finger up, but you can also slide to the right to open the BlackBerry Hub. These shortcuts are very useful and can customize them to use with other apps (you can only exchange the two extremes in Settings> Shortcuts slide).

The BlackBerry Hub is the traditional enterprise app that serves as a center of emails, call logs, social networks and text messaging. The app brings together the conversations and lets you delete messages to slide to the left, but you can also swipe right to have it remember the app by time, when you get to a specific location or when you connect to a Wi-Fi determined. Also, you can slide down in the Hub to get a view of your agenda.

The Hub will design leverages the Google Material, group conversions and works relatively well – especially if you like to have everything centralized in one place.

Trying to capitalize on the curve BlackBerry Priv screen, BlackBerry integrates a function similar to that offered shortcuts Samsung Galaxy S6 + Edge. A flange is located on the edge of the screen to access from any app screen or your calendar, email, tasks and contacts. These shortcuts do not open the entire app to select the sample nor a floating screen, but fills the screen with a black interface, and if you select any email or option, there indeed function opens the app completely. You can customize the location of the tab anywhere on the two edges of BlackBerry Priv.

Also the Android BlackBerry cell integrates traditional Android widgets, but also brings emerging or floating widgets that are integrated directly into the icon of each app and you can open by sliding up or down on the app icon on the Home screen.

Android on BlackBerry Priv offers the experience we already know and adds some new features that can be useful for many users.

Important features physical keyboard slider, curve QHD screen, Android Pay camera with optical image stabilization, support for wireless charging S Pen and its features Samsung Pay, fingerprint reader, wireless loaded, scaling sound UHQ Screen “unbreakable” QHD screen, two front speakers, Android Pay, customizable via Moto Maker curved screen, microSD card slot, optional leather cover, removable battery, laser autofocus QHD display, fingerprint reader, two front speakers (stereo), Android Pay, laser focus on camera, USB port Type C

The BlackBerry Priv is not the most powerful Android phone market but has enough specifications to meet job searching an advanced user who does not necessarily want the best performance in the world.

In addition to the curved screen of 5.4 inches that provides a good experience and it is easy to see outdoors, the BlackBerry Priv Snapdragon 808 processor integrates a six-core (dual core 2.8GHz and 1.44GHz four) of 64 bits.

Also, you can find 3GB of RAM, 32GB of storage with a microSD card slot of up to 2TB, a rear camera of 18 megapixel camera with optical image stabilization that has the ability to capture up to 4K video and a front 2 megapixel camera that can capture panoramic photos.

The BlackBerry Priv has Bluetooth 4.1, NFC, Wi-Fi 802.11n (2.4GHz and 5GHz) and GPS.

Review BlackBerry Priv: the best Android phone with a physical keyboard

BlackBerry Priv: Performance

BlackBerry not want to sacrifice specifications to integrate a sliding keyboard that does not make the phone too thick, nor the most powerful integrated market. This is precisely reflecting the performance of 808 Snapdragon processor and 3GB of RAM – a good performance with some delays.

However, the experience was good in all conditions, except for the few occasions when he had too many open and especially with the BlackBerry Hub apps. The message center and information about BlackBerry was the most frequently proved he had not the best specifications on the market, although it is very possible that it is because of that app.

Often, slide the post to delete or schedule reminders did not respond well or responded seconds later. This happened mainly in the main tray, because within emails or messages worked very well.

The gaming experience was relatively good. Modern playing Kombat 5: Blackout the BlackBerry Priv provided an excellent experience, but not playing Need for Speed ​​Limits the images were not completely smooth all the time.

As for performance testing, the BlackBerry Priv achieved good results.

The BlackBerry Priv is available as an unlocked and free phone (no contract) or US It is also available through AT&T.

Using the AT&T network in San Francisco and surrounding areas, the call quality offered by the BlackBerry Priv was good. My interlocutor’s voice sounded natural, with good volume and so my voice she said. Also, my interlocutor said he failed to hear background noise even though I was walking the streets of San Francisco.

As for the speaker, BlackBerry Priv offered a good experience when I kept up to my waist. The sound was loud and clear, thanks to its good speaker. My interlocutor said he also heard me right when using the speaker.

It is worth mentioning that the call quality is affected by several factors, including the location, time, weather and signal, so your mileage may vary.

BlackBerry Priv: Data Rate

Using the 4G LTE AT & T in San Francisco and the surrounding area, the new BlackBerry achieved download speeds between 8Mbps and 26Mbps, while the rise remained stable between 9Mbps and 19Mbps.

Similar to the quality of the call, the data rate also depends on your location, weather and time signal as well as other factors that may cause the speeds are different.

BlackBerry Priv: Battery life

The first Android phone from BlackBerry has a 3,410mAh battery that allows the BlackBerry Priv last all day with moderate use to surf the Internet, visit Google+, Facebook, Twitter and other apps, like video games short time.

During our tests of continuous video playback, the BlackBerry Priv managed to take 10 hours and 25 minutes, which is a mean duration. The OnePlus 2 achieved last for 10 hours and 36 minutes, the Moto X Pure Edition 8 hours and 46 minutes, while the Samsung Galaxy Note 5 managed to last 15 hours.

The new Backberry supports fast charging Qualcomm QuickCharge 2.0 (but the included charger is not compatible with this), and Qi wireless charging wireless charging AirFuel Alliance.

BlackBerry Priv: Camera

The 18 megapixel camera manages to take good pictures, but not reach to the level of the photos featuring the Samsung Galaxy Note 5, 6S iPhone or Nexus Plus 6P.

Review BlackBerry Priv: the best Android phone with a physical keyboard

The outdoor photos offered the best results, with good detail and colors. However, indoors or in low light, the visual noise appears easily and sometimes the pictures take on a yellowish color.

The app camera has automatic HDR, which makes us worry less about picking the right to take any pictures mode. It also has countdown, panorama and filters.

One of the major weaknesses of BlackBerry Priv is the 2-megapixel front camera. In general, high-end phones offer 5 megapixels front camera or higher. It is notable that the camera is 2 megapixels, and the pictures appear more blurred than I like, but it has a panorama mode that works well and is something not often found in front cameras.

Review BlackBerry Priv: the best Android phone with a physical keyboard

The camera can also record video up to 4K resolution and quality is good, but the colors seem a little pale. Unlike photos, optical image stabilization is not always available on video – only available when you record 1080p or 720p video at 30 frames per second.


The BlackBerry Priv is a cell that provides a good experience Android, has a design that stands out and promises to provide additional security, which has been one of the main strengths of the company in their cell.

DTEK The app provides useful information on what data used by different apps, offering a detail that usually other Android devices do not provide.

Overall, the performance is good, but some delays may occur, especially in the BlackBerry Hub and camera cell below as the Samsung Galaxy Note 5, Galaxy S6 + Edge, 6P and LG Nexus G4.

The BlackBerry Priv is the right choice for those who are very concerned about their safety, as well as for those who miss or want a good physical QWERTY keyboard.

Otherwise, its high price makes the BlackBerry Priv is the best option because it competes directly with phones like the Samsung Galaxy Note 5 which provides a more complete package.

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