The BlackBerry Q10 and R10

BlackBerry is unveiling new smartphones: but will it be enough to save this fledgling company?

By Aziel Goh, Staff Writer

Image courtesy of UberGizmo.com

Image courtesy of UberGizmo.com

It’s no secret that BlackBerry’s (previously Research in Motion), previous dominance in the smart phone industry, has collapsed. They have experienced a drastic fall in market share and sales due to the increased competition from newer competitors – namely Apple and Android.

However, BlackBerry has refused to bow out of the lucrative, and expanding, smartphone industry.

Earlier this year, BlackBerry launched the much-anticipated touch screen Z10 to positive reviews and surprisingly good sales figures. At the same event, the candy bar smartphone Q10 was also announced for release within the coming months.

Consumers and technology analysts have been fixated on the rollout of the BlackBerry Q10. With therejuvenation of a classic BlackBerry,featuring a physical keyboard, the firm hopes to garner market share from ex-BlackBerry enthusiasts who were forced to change to an alternate device due to the ageing BlackBerry operating system.

Aside from running the new BlackBerry 10 operating system, the Q10 closely resembles it’s predecessor – the BlackBerry Bold – however, as expected, the Q10 will also include improved features, hardware and a larger battery pack. The increase of RAM to 2GB combined with the dual core 1.5 GHz processor will ensure that functional operation and application use (available from BlackBerry World – BlackBerry’s ‘App Store’ equivalent) will run better. Capitalising on consumers’ increasing use of their smartphones as a point-and-shoot camera substitute, BlackBerry have both made improvements to theQ10’s primary rear camera, as well as incorporating a secondary front-facing camera.

As the technological world waits anxiously for the Q10, leaked photographs and reports of an additional candy bar smartphone in the BlackBerry pipeline have recently emerged. With a 3.1 inch display, 720×720 resolution, a 5-megapixel rear facing camera and 2 GB of RAM, the R10 is expected to be positioned at the bottom of the new BlackBerry device line up. Structurally, the R10 is similar to the Q10, however, the reduction in feature inclusions make the device more affordable and accessible to a wider range of consumers.

Despite BlackBerry’s innovative new line up, they are still playing catch-up with the current smartphone industry leaders, Samsung and Apple. The future of the company is contingent on the handset line up running the BlackBerry 10 operating system. Only time will tell if BlackBerry’s best efforts to offer a range of innovative new products (Z10) as well as improvement of their iconic fixed keyboard phone (Q10 & R10) is enough to save this company from following in the path of Palm.

Aziel is a second-year student at The University of Melbourne studying a Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in Finance and Accounting. You can reach me at: http://au.linkedin.com/pub/aziel-goh/57/260/705


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