Update: BlackBerry Priv now available in India for Rs. 62,990

by: Matthew BensonJanuary 28, 2016
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Update, January 28: It’s official. BlackBerry officials introduced the Priv to the Indian market at a Delhi event today. The BlackBerry Priv will be available in Indian stores starting today, at a price of Rs. 62,990 ($925). Thoughts on this price tag?

Original post, January 19: 2015 was a profound year for BlackBerry, for it represented a new beginning in the form of the OEM’s first Android device, the BlackBerry Priv. The handset has apparently fared well in its limited release so far, given that CEO John Chen has gone on record to state his company will bring at least one new device to market this year. Meanwhile, outside of a small handful of markets, the Priv is still waiting for its time to shine.

According to a new report, India need only wait a bit longer, as the device is set to release there on the 28th. Invites have reportedly been sent out for the event, to be held in New Deli. BlackBerry can be expected to focus on the privacy and productivity aspects of the device, as well as the slide-out QWERTY keyboard.

For those in need of a recap, the Priv has a 5.4 inch QHD dual curved AMOLED display, a 1.8GHz Dual Core/1.44 GHz Quad Core Qualcomm 808 hexa-core SoC, 3GB of RAM, Adreno 418 GPU, 32GB of on-board storage, an 18-megapixel rear camera and 2-megapixel front camera, microSD support, a 3410 mAh battery, and runs Android 5.1.1 Lollipop with an update to 6.0 Marshmallow scheduled for later this year.

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The real question may be a matter of price however. Given that the Priv launched for around $700 in the USA last November, it is already a very expensive prospect. Add in any form of premium that BlackBerry might tack on to the price tag and the product becomes an even greater fiscal hurdle for a market that is enjoying a wide variety of low-to-mid range, more moderately priced competition.

As if that is not enough in-and-of-itself, there is the additional issue of the Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge, and LG G5, all of which are expected to be announced next month. John Chen has already mentioned that the price of the Priv will probably have to drop come MWC 2016 given that the hardware involved is going to be out-of-date. To this end, it will be of particular interest to see if late-January release of the Priv in India represents a potential last-ditch effort to charge the full price for the “aging” components.

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On a final note, given that the Priv has been available since November, and many online stores are selling unlocked (SIM free) versions, it might also follow that any truly interested potential consumers in India – or elsewhere – will have already imported it weeks ago.

Indian readers, at what price point would you argue BlackBerry could feasibly sell the Priv at before it became too expensive for you to consider purchasing it? Would you or any of your friends be interested in the product, period? Leave a comment below and let your voice be heard!

  • saksham

    it will not sell at all… let me confirm that . blackberry phones are perhaps found in museums now

    • JohnOne

      The BlackBerry you’re talking about probably in the graveyard not in the museum I’m a proud owner of the BlackBerry Priv the only reason this phone won’t sell in India the people in India are poor people they can afford a phone for this price

      • saksham

        not true … well at least not in the big cities like delhi ( where i live ) and mumbai … rich people here all love apple and out of 3 people i see 1 is carrying an iphone . ofcourse there are those ppl who u see in metro trains who carry a broken screen samsung 3 inch phone

      • Avieshek Rajkhowa

        So rich people work in McDonalds? remember Mr. Obama came asking for investment and money from India to create jobs in America

      • Mahabarata Murabacam

        You will be surprised that the Jaguar company OWNED by Indian company.

        Yes, there were many poor people in India, but because we have 1 billion + people, 50 million rich people is only less than 5% of our population, and seems not much. But 50 million rich Indian people is more than singapore rich people, or united kingdom rich people, or france.

        Bottom line is, BB will not sell in India, because BB brand already tarnished. BB were associated with a failure phone product. Samsung is the premium brand in India right now.

        • JohnOne

          I understand all the poor people in India use a low-end samsung phone

      • bob

        no one buys blackberry in India because it’s not worth it ,its not about being poor or rich

      • Abhijeet

        Blackberry not doing well has nothing to do with money, it’s just… irrelevant. 25% of my office staff have an iPhone, others android. One guy who does have blackberry has Z30 (no kb). I have seen so many shady people with iPhones it hurts my brain. Blackberry is not cool, not cheap and even for business needs people prefer iPhone or some giant screen samsung phone. At this price you can buy one Nexus 6 and have money left for a decent weekend in Goa (or your preferred holiday spot). Blackberry just doesn’t fit anywhere.

  • Kunal Tyagi

    At this price point, apple is selling iphone 6s. With these specs and the not so good history of blackberry in the past few years, this is the worst price point they could’ve kept for the phone. While i’m a die hard android fan, no one in there right mind will think of buying this phone at this price. all the previous blackberry phones went down on price by at much as 70% within a year of their launch. that’s how bad the resale value of a blackberry phone is in India. And for a spec which is already outdated, charging almost 250$ extra then the US market? Do they seriously take the Indian population as a fool? And @disqus_LzDgzcv9OG:disqus, maybe you are a proud owner, the phone is decent i agree, but even you will think about spending almost 1000$ on this phone right? In India people really are not that hung up on security, which is the only plus point of this phone. If they had launched it around 50K (even that is around 750$) and then reduced it to around 40 in 6 months they had a good chance to get a decent sales figure, but they seem intent to dig their own graves, at least in the Indian market.

  • Kunal Tyagi

    At this price point, apple is selling iphone 6s. With these specs and the not so good history of blackberry in the past few years, this is the worst price point they could’ve kept for the phone. While i’m a die hard android fan, no one in there right mind will think of buying this phone at this price. all the previous blackberry phones went down on price by at much as 70% within a year of their launch. that’s how bad the resale value of a blackberry phone is in India. And for a spec which is already outdated, charging almost 250$ extra then the US market? Do they seriously take the Indian population as a fool? And @disqus_LzDgzcv9OG:disqus , maybe you are a proud owner, the phone is decent i agree, but even you will think about spending almost 1000$ on this phone right? In India people really are not that hung up on security, which is the only plus point of this phone. If they had launched it around 50K (even that is around 750$) and then reduced it to around 40 in 6 months they had a good chance to get a decent sales figure, but they seem intent to dig their own graves, at least in the Indian market. This is not gonna work.
    EDIT: Just saw, imported Priv is being sold around 50K on ebay, exactly the price point I mentioned.

    • Mila Kumis

      johnone is a bb pom pom girl

      • JohnOne

        Yeah I’m a Priv pom pom girl and what are you Samsung pom pom girl it’s ok I understand Indians can only afford low-end samsung phone I still can’t understand why BlackBerry is releasing this expensive phone in this poor country

    • JohnOne

      Maybe to you it’s a decent phone to me the PRIV is a great phone and the most enjoyable Android phone I ever use

  • Om Kakde

    BlackBerry Priv is a good phone, but its price is madness!
    I can get a Samsung Galaxy Note 5 at a cheaper rate than Priv which is also better in performance.

    Blackberry needs to drop the price by Rs 20,000 in order to target more customers.

    • Mila Kumis

      Please remember that bb brand is not premium. it’s even bellow xiaomi. at Rs 20,000 BB price won’t be able to compete with xiaomi.

      • Om Kakde

        Blackberry is more secure than any Xiaomi +Blackberry has modified Android with some of its own OS features which makes it better. So I would say that I am ready to pay 40,000 Rs for this one.

        • malaxi wipo

          secure? gimmick!!!
          nobody cares about the secure hype bb trying to spin.

  • Umang Goel

    Anything above INR 40000 ($600) is not worth it. When Blackberry wants to capture the market back, launching Priv at this price point is absurd.

    • bb is a joke

      The failure of BB in india
      seekingalpha_DOT_com /article/3843336-blackberry-india

  • Aftab Khatri

    Available on ebay less then 50000rs :)