RIM, the maker of the iconic Blackberry, has been struggling for years to make a comeback into the market. After defining the world of smartphones, the market share of the Blackberry plummeted. Consumers voted with their feet, choosing the modern iOS and then Android, over the quaint operating system that RIM loaded on its devices.
RIM wants to change everything with BB10 and the new phones that run it. The Canadian company announced two devices today, an entry-level model with the traditional Blackberry keyboard that some people still love, and the Z10, a high-end full touchscreen smartphone.
How does the new Blackberry Z10 fare against the best that Android has to offer? Let’s compare them!
Let’s say that the designers of the Z10 paid homage to the work of Sir Jonathan Ive… The Blackberry Z10 resembles the iPhone 5 closely, having similar rounded corners and a similar design language in general. That’s not to say the Z10 is ugly; on the contrary, I find it quite appealing, with a sharp industrial look to it.
I haven’t had the chance to handle a Z10, but from the many videos that leaked, I can say that the device is solid. And it’s relatively thin and light, weighing in at just 135 grams.
In the other corner, we have devices like the Nexus 4, Galaxy S3, Xperia Z, and HTC Droid DNA/Butterfly. Each of these devices has unique designs, ranging from the glossy shell of the Galaxy to the smooth glass-faces of the Xperia Z and the Nexus 4.
Design is inherently subjective, but one thing that the Z10 has going for it is the compact build. On the other hand, Android delivers something for every taste.
The display on the Z10 is a smallish 4.2-inch LCD of 1280 × 720 resolution. At 4.2-inch, an HD display offers a 356ppi resolution, which is far from the records set by Android devices like the Xperia Z or the Droid DNA, at 441ppi.
However, consumers have made it clear that they like bigger screens, even moving into phablet territory. About the ppi race, that’s mostly for marketing, but still, the Galaxy S4 and the HTC M7, both expected soon, will leave the Z10 in the dust.
Android flagship devices have always excelled when it comes to raw specs. Hell, we are talking octo-cores, and quad-cores CPUs are the current baseline. How does the Blackberry Z10 fare?
The Z10 will come with a dual-core OMAP4470 processor clocked at 1.5GHz, 2GB of RAM, and 16GB of storage. Nothing to write home about really, but probably adequate for the job. Other highlights include a microSD card slot, NFC, and a removable 1,800mAh battery.
Your mileage may vary, but with these specs, the Z10 would qualify as a good mid-ranger in the Android world.
Devices like the Xperia Z and the Galaxy S4 are pushing the specs boundaries, so we will hand this round to the Android camp.
A few shots snapped with the Blackberry Z10 have leaked, and from the looks of it, we can tell that the camera is… decent. How else could you call, in this day and age, an 8MP camera, with autofocus and 1080p HD video recording?
Meanwhile, Android’s finest are moving happily to 13MP sensors, and features like HDR video, HDR photos, ultra slow motion, and others. We’ll wait for some comparisons to emerge, but from the looks of it, it’s not looking pretty for the Z10.
The most important aspect of any device, the software and apps are defining for the user experience. The Z10 comes with the long-awaited Blackberry 10, a brand new operating system that RIM developed based on the QNX OS it acquired in 2010. The Z10 comes with some interesting features, such as the new smart keyboard, the built-in unified messaging center, or the ability to run multiple user profiles. The design seems well polished, and we liked the new swipe-based interface. More about some of the features we liked at BB10 here.
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean is definitely on par or better with BB10, in most areas, save perhaps for the security and enterprise-focused features. We love the multiple options that you get with Android, thanks to overlays, themes, launchers, custom ROMs, and more. Overall, we feel that Android is much more flexible and powerful than BB10, although it does require some work to customize just the way you like it.
Apps make or break a platform, and RIM knows that. The company effectively bribed developers to create apps for the new BB10, and their efforts paid off to some extent. The Canadians promised 70,000 apps available in store (Blackberry World) by launch, with many of the crucial apps, like Facebook or Foursquare already there. Nevertheless, 70,000 is a far cry from the 700,000+ apps available in the Play Store, so before jumping on the RIM bandwagon, you better check that your favorite apps are on board.
RIM has just unveiled the new Blackberry World, which now sells movies and music, in addition to apps and themes. RIM realized that they couldn’t compete without a media storefront, so they whipped something up. I haven’t compared the offers of BB World and Google’s Play Store yet, but I have a feeling that Google has a clear advantage here.
The Blackberry Z10 is a nice phone, but that’s about it. Android already offers some superior alternatives, and with the upcoming HTC M7 and Galaxy S4, the lead is bound to extend even more.
Blackberry 10 has its strong suits, especially in the area that define RIM as a company, enterprise, but for the vast majority of consumers, I fail to see a killer feature. Android is just bigger and better in almost every area.
The biggest appeal of the Blackberry Z10? For me, it’s the novelty and the fresh look of the operating system. The design is nice, but if I were to buy phones based on that, I wouldn’t be writing for Android Authority.
To wrap up, RIM has made a good first effort with the Blackberry Z10, and for the sake of competition, I hope they manage to turn the ship around. But for me, Android is still king.
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im watched the hands on they showed during the event and it looks pretty nice… but no widgets.. honestly dont think i could live without widgets.. ill stay with android.
Hey, there’s a mistake, Xperia Z and DNA’s 441 ppi is far more than BB Z10 356ppi
not fixed? “At 4.2-inch, an HD display offers an impressive 356ppi resolution, which is more than the records set by Android devices like the Xperia Z or the Droid DNA, at 441ppi.”
It’s a cache issue I think, I updated the post, but you might get an earlier version from the cache.
First paragraph under the Display header.. It’s still there.
Actually BB10 targets mostly business users, the OS is very email-centric. I think BB hub looks very interesting, but I still don’t understand how the thing actually works.
i really like that they indented the camera.. even though i use a case i hate how the cameras are exposed and the glass can be scratched.
Nice article.. It’s the same as Nokia.. some interesting features that, however don’t blow us away because they are already present on Android phones..
Great comparison of top Android phones to the new Z10. Check out this amazing visualized comparison of the LG Nexus 4 vs the Z10. http://sortable.com/phones/LG-Nexus-4-vs-BlackBerry-Z10
maybe I like BB10 OS but I dont like that Z10 design, thick bezel looks ugly. I’d take Xperia Z over BB Z10 any day.
same with BB10 keyboard variant Q10, it looks ugly, I still prefer Blackberry Bold design.
processors and ram mean very little to me and a camera with anything greater than
8-Mpixels is a waste of storage imo. I mostly like what comes baked into the OS. You just know that will be lightning fast. WHERE IS MY GOOGLE+ DAMMIT!!!!
“processors and ram mean very little to me” – You probably shouldn’t be using a smart phone if thats the case
As a very happy user of a Galaxy Nexus, I like BB’s Z10. I think it’s good-looking, designed well and has very good specs. I’ve had my GNex for 2 months now and am still loving it (you know how easily we lust after new things!). As I am platform agnostic, that could change when I wish it to.
TI seems to have done a really good job with the OMAP processors and BB has always been very efficient in resource use. For example, load a web page on a BB device and one on an Android and the same page on the BB uses way less data. Black magic I tell ya! And let’s not forget security. We know Android security is an oxymoron. (The first app I got for my new device was anti-malware!) As you would imagine, security is HUGE for business and even preferred the iPhone over Android when they fell out of love with BB.
My 4.65″ screen is wonderful; maybe BB users would really love a full 4.2″ worth of screen real-estate compared to half a device worth! All the other specs are more than adequate and comparable to MOST Android devices. Why would I ever want a 5″ device running out of juice every 6 hours (easy there, this is an exaggeration) held up to my ear in a conversation (what am I doing making a phone call on my phone or not using a BT device you ask?)?
And maybe you got it all wrong: I think BB is trying to win back the customers they lost in the last 6 years to other platforms when they refused to adapt and innovate. Some new ones wouldn’t hurt the bottom line either. Companies have to go back to that (old) philosophy of “Market like crazy”, not “Build it and they will come”. Maybe the new BB has learned that? I sincerely hope so.
I don’t care who wins the war. I just hope they continue battling which can only result in innovation and better devices at cheaper prices. If it weren’t for subsidized phones, could most people really afford $600-700 phones?! I paid less than $500 for my Asus i3 Windows 8 touchscreen laptop over the holidays! Come on!
Android has ugly phones,iphone is costly,powerful and sexy. Women lay for iphones not android.
U want ugly just unlock any iPhones lock screen now that’s ugly
What? I can’t hear you over my quadcore nexus 4 and the sound of the psvita I bought with the left over money I used after I decided to buy an android instead of an iPhone 5
Great article. Android has ugly phones,iphone is costly. Not fixed yet.
What, I mean what in the name of earth such an immature article has been published here.
I am a hardcore android fan still I couldn’t see this unimaginative comparison of hundreds of android devices established in whole world from years versus 1 device launched not more than 15 days.
Just so unethical!!!
I own a Nexus 4 and I got to test a BB10, Nexus 4 beats BB10 hands down. N4 is fast, less clumsy and has a great build quality (all metal, rich). BB10 is plastic, ugly just like Galaxy phones. Camera is Okish in BB10 but, however in N4 camera with those apps added is an awesome thing.
But yes, not having LTE is 1 big disappointment but I chose to live with it because I live pure android UI and not some cheap elements and layers added by samsung.
RIM is no longer the company’s name. Its now just Blackberry. I know you probably know that and just forgot. :)
Android is the best and will always be the best forever