It’s official: Android-powered BlackBerry Priv (Venice) coming this year

by: Bogdan PetrovanSeptember 25, 2015

blackberry priv venice

BlackBerry announced today that its first Android-powered device, the BlackBerry Priv, is coming by the end of the year.

The announcement, part of BlackBerry’s quarterly results report for Q2 FY 2016, comes after a flurry of leaks, including an extensive hands-on look we brought you last week.

BlackBerry Priv, formerly known by its internal codename, Venice, is BlackBerry’s first foray into Android, which the Canadian company tried – and ultimately failed – to fight off with its own operating system, BlackBerry 10.

“Priv combines the best of BlackBerry security and productivity with the expansive mobile application ecosystem available on the Android platform,” said BlackBerry’s CEO John Chen. The device promises “best in class security for enterprise customers,” as part of the company’s “heritage and core mission of protecting our customers’ privacy.”

The Priv will become available late this year in “major markets in-store and online.” More details, including the price and exact availability details will be revealed in the next few weeks.

The oddly named Priv can be viewed as a last-ditch effort to stay in the loss-making handset business. BlackBerry announced revenues of $490 million in Q2 FY2016, a little over half the same period last year. In the past, John Chen implied that he won’t hesitate to abandon the handset operations, and in this context, adopting Android appears to be one last desperate measure. That said, BlackBerry won’t ditch its own OS, with a major update announced for March.

For more on the exciting BlackBerry Venice Priv, read our rumor roundup. Let us know your thoughts!

  • Sergio Arroyo


  • Renascienza

    Now we are talking. The Age of RIM Stuborness is oficially over.

    But what they did with the name (facepalm)?

  • DBS93

    I actually like this idea, this could really work for blackberry, and I wouldn’t mind sacrificing my money on this smartphone just to see if it’s worth it

  • Arman

    Sounds great, best of luck to BB

  • Scott Ricketts

    I guess “Priv” sounded better than “Lo” even though they’re both one letter off from British names for the toilet.

  • Javid Nazim Mammadov

    Venice sounds better, come on

    • Great Dude

      I also think like that, but they called it Priv for Privacy which would help them to market the phone as for privacy.

  • flye

    looks good, hope things pick up for BB after this.

  • J A

    YAY! Real keyboard.

    • AppleBerrySandwich

      I absolutely love the idea of a qwerty available to use when I want one. I can totally see typing long emails on a phone like this.

      Want to see one of these. Sounds like they are coming to Verizon.

  • AppleBerrySandwich

    Terrible name but great looking phone. Love it.

  • M42

    Let’s party like it’s 1999!

  • Jonathon Rios

    Might be time for a blackberry if the specs are better than my note 4.

  • Rafael Muniz

    BB does make some really good hardware.

  • Dusan

    Such pity, I like the device, but by the end of the year, we will know a lot more about Snapdragon 820 and it will probably be around the corner. Talk about bad timing.

  • Ian Huntly

    Hopefully, BB keeps the phone up-to-date with operating system releases etc. as is needed in the professional market, and then I’d be a customer too. I am tired of consumer grade throw away devices such as the Samsung offerings.

  • David Barker Sr

    Yes! I miss my Q10, but needed Android apps. Can’t wait. It will be a PRIVilege to own one.

  • Tom Bennett

    No news on pricing though which is worrying, I feel they need to adopt a one plus attitude with this device so they can at least get a foothold in the market again. No point coming in with a price like the well established players like apple and Samsung when their pedigree just doesn’t stand up

  • Rudy Myer

    “The oddly named Priv can be viewed as a last-ditch effort to stay in the loss-making handset business.”


    • Renascienza

      Actually, the company CEO John Chen make a last effort after, announcing that Priv “run Google” instead “run Android”. demonstrating that doesn’t really knows the waters in which he prepares to navigate.

  • David Kim

    Currently have a Note 4, looks promising. I may have to seriously consider it if Samsung continues to remove the SD card feature on their Note line like on the 5.