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If you’ve been around here for a while then you know that I’m an iPhone user and have been for the last couple of years, but prior to me finding (and falling in love with) the iPhone 4, I was a hardcore Blackberry user who never thought they’d make the switch, but I did and have so far not looked back—until the Blackberry Z10.
I thought that Blackberry would be the perfect smartphone to showcase for our back-to-school series, because they are traditionally the better phone (at least in my opinion) when it comes to work related uses. So Blackberry sent me the Blackberry Z10 to play around with and share my thoughts with all of you—this could get interesting! When I first shared on Facebook that I would be reviewing the Z10 I stated that it would have to preform BIG to make me fall out of love with my iPhone and while I wouldn’t say that I’ve been completely convinced about making the switch, there is a whole lot to love about this phone.
Blackberry Z10 Specifications
- 16 GB Internal Storage
- 4.2” Touch screen display
- 8 MP Rear Camera
- 4G LTE Ready
- 1280x768 resolution, 356 ppi
- Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ S4 processor
- 1080p HD video recording
- Up to 13 days* standby time
- BlackBerry® 10 operating system
- MicroSD memory card
- Up to 10 hours* talk time (3G)
Since I find it so much easier to break reviews down into small sections, I thought I would do this review based on what I love about the Z10 and what I dislike about the Z10, but first check out some of my very favorite things about the Z10 in the video below!
What I LOVE about the Blackberry Z10
When I first received the Z10 I was instantly impressed with the size of the touch screen, as an iPhone 4 user, I find myself envying other smartphone users who have big, bold screens and the Z10 definitely beats the iPhone 4 in that respect. My previous Blackberry smartphones have been combination touch screen and Qwerty keyboard and while I did love the ease of being able to use either/or, I definitely like the full touch screen of the Z10 much better than I thought I would. One of the hardest things for me was going from a Blackberry Torch that was had a touchscreen and Qwerty keyboard to an all touchscreen phone with the iPhone, so I was convinced that I wouldn’t like the all touchscreen Blackberry offering, but it turns out that I really do prefer the Z10’s touchscreen to my own iPhone 4.
The Blackberry Hub
I’m nothing if not impatient and unorganized (though I swear I try not to be either) so I’m convinced that the Blackberry Hub was invented for people like me. I like to refer to the Hub as the epicenter of the Z10 because it contains almost everything you need to access in one place and it’s always there. All of your emails, texts, Facebook posts, Tweets—everything, is right there in the Hub and it’s accessible with just a quick finger swipe to the right. I don’t know about you, but for someone as impatient as I am, moving from one app to another or closing an app out to get to a text or waiting for an app to load is just torture and the Blackberry Hub makes waiting a thing of the past because it’s all there…all the time. I love the Hub, it’s one of my absolute favorite features of the Blackberry Z10!
It’s SUPER FAST
Again, I adore my iPhone, but it’s SO slow sometimes. Maybe it’s all of the apps bogging it down, maybe it’s something else, all I know is that the Z10 is so much faster than other smartphones I’ve used. I love that I can quickly move from app to email to text in no time and without waiting—(see above, I hate waiting). The BB Z10 browser is also extremely nice, it’s crazy fast compared to every other smartphone browser I’ve used, web pages load in no time (even those with a tons of images and banners), the images are crisp and clear and overall I prefer it to the browser on my iPhone. A major problem I’ve always had with other smartphones is how slow and well, for lack of a better word, sucky, the browsers were, with the Z10 you can browse anytime, anywhere (with and without wifi connectivity) with ease, which is a major selling point for me considering how often I use my browser both at home and away.
I take a LOT of pictures, every single day and since lugging around my camera isn’t always the best option for me, I depend on my smartphone to take the majority of my shots. The camera on my iPhone has always been an issue for me, while it isn’t awful, it’s nowhere near consistent, bouncing back and fourth between great shots and shots that I can’t even use, I’m always missing great shots of my kids because my phone just can’t handle the pressure—yeah, I’m pretty convinced that’s the issue. Below are just a few of the amazing shots that my 11 year old captured with the Blackberry Z10—I’m pretty sure I can’t even take pictures like that with my regular camera—amazing!
The camera on the Blackberry Z10, is without a doubt the best smartphone camera I’ve used! From capturing pictures of my kids in action, to capturing images of the smallest bug with such amazing, beautiful detail, the Z10 could give other smartphone cameras a lesson or two for sure. I love the BB Z10’s Time Shift mode that allows you to take a picture and then essentially choose which frame works best, for shots of the kids or group shots, this mode alone is invaluable. Since I thought that the Time Shift camera mode was one of the best features of the Z10, I thought I’d make a short video showing Time Shift in action.
For someone like me who is constantly taking pictures, the Time Shift mode is a huge time (and stress) saver. I love that I can edit the photo as soon as I take it, right on the phone, without having to move it from place to place.
While I do love the camera on the Blackberry Z10, I don’t love the video camera and here’s why…basically, I haven’t found a great way to hold it to take video without the sound quality of the video being compromised. The Z10 does take gorgeous video visually, but the sound quality just isn’t up to par, but that is the one and only complaint I have.
Email is the Bomb.com with the Z10
The one thing I hated about switching from a Blackberry to an iPhone was the email. Blackberry has always made business it’s number one priority and it shows in how fluid and easy it is to send emails with the Blackberry OS. I love that you can add multiple images or documents to your emails and then open and download images and documents with the Z10, the iPhone makes sending emails and opening images in emails a huge ordeal and don’t even get me started on how long it takes to open documents with the iPhone. With the Z10 it’s a breeze, if I had to chose one feature of the Blackberry OS I miss most, it would definitely be how easy sending and receiving emails can be with a Blackberry.
What I Don’t Love About the Blackberry Z10
Can We Get Some Apps Please?
The lack of popular apps was the number one reason I switched from a Blackberry to an iPhone in the first place and two years later, it’s still the Blackberry’s number one downfall (at least for me it is). While some of the most popular apps like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIN and FourSquare are present on the Blackberry Z10 (mine came with all four already added to my phone), there are definitely some major apps missing. I found myself switching back and fourth between the Z10 and my iPhone 4 just so I could access apps I use all the time like Pinterest and Instagram and don’t even get me started on the fact that the Blackberry App world does not include Candy Crush. While the apps may be seriously lacking with Blackberry, the apps that they do offer, mainly Facebook, is in my opinion far superior to that of the iPhone. Facebook on my iPhone is constantly having issues and I have yet to experience any kind of problems with Facebook for Blackberry. Seriously though, I found myself searching the Blackberry App World for apps that I could use and often times coming up empty handed—it was actually kind of disappointing. If Blackberry could get some of the more popular apps added to the list of apps that they currently offer, I would switch from my iPhone back to a Blackberry in a second—that’s seriously the only thing keeping me from fully committing to Blackberry again.
Will I Switch?
That’s pretty much the only bad thing I have to say about the Z10 and it’s actually not even really about the Z10—the phone itself is amazing, it’s the quintessential Blackberry—strong, built to perform, classy and so much fun to use. Honestly I’ve wanted another Blackberry for a while now, it really is my favorite brand of smartphone, and the Z10 has made me want one so much more, there really isn’t anything about the phone I don’t love—now, if we could only get Blackberry to get on the Candy Crush train, I’d convert in a second.
If you’re looking for a new smartphone for yourself, or maybe you’re looking for one for your high school or college student, I think the Blackberry Z10 is the perfect choice!
Disclosure: I received the product mentioned above in order to facilitate my review...all opinions are my own!