Review: BlackBerry Priv 32 GB Review: BlackBerry Priv 32 GB
A BlackBerry with an Android OS – it’s not something you thought you would ever hear, but it has happened. So, is it a... Review: BlackBerry Priv 32 GB

A BlackBerry with an Android OS – it’s not something you thought you would ever hear, but it has happened. So, is it a winning combination to help the Canadian company to turn things around, following their drop in popularity?

It’s a bold move to abandon their own OS in favour of a rival’s more popular platform, but this may be exactly what BlackBerry needs to do in order to become successful again.

BlackBerry Priv

Before BBChat came along – a feature that pushed the brand into the mainstream – BlackBerry was considered to be a “business-centric” phone and they have stayed true to this; it’s the first Android device to offer monthly security updates, ensuring that all your content is safe.

Let’s not forget about the physical keyboard. This frees up the whole screen for your work and has the potential appeal to a new generation of users.

BlackBerry has been able to maintain the uniqueness that made it successful. According to Techradar, the company decided to move to the Android OS because “Android is the OS with the biggest market share in mobile, with more Android users in the world than Windows ones.”

So, if you’re a BlackBerry fan, you will be delighted with the Priv!

Key specs

  • 5.4” AMOLED capacitive touchscreen
  • Resolution: 1440 x 2560 pixels
  • 18 MP, f/2.2, 27mm, Schneider-Kreuznach optics, OIS, phase detection autofocus, dual-LED (dual tone) flash
  • 2 MP, 720p
  • Protection: Corning Gorilla Glass 4
  • Android OS, v5.1.1 (Lollipop), upgradable to v6.0.1 (Marshmallow)
  • Qualcomm MSM8992 Snapdragon 808 Chipset
  • Hexa-core (4×1.4 GHz Cortex-A53 & 2×1.8 GHz Cortex-A57)
  • microSD dedicated slot (expandable up to 256 GB)
  • 3 GB RAM
  • 32 GB built-in memory
  • Wireless connectivity: Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, Wi-Fi Direct, hotspot
  • Bluetooth: 1, A2DP, EDR, LE
  • microUSB v2.0 (SlimPort 4K)
  • Non-removable Li-Ion 3410 mAh battery
  • Up to 13 h talk time (3G)

Pros: QWERTY keyboard is useful for those who don’t like typing on a touchscreen; sleek design; high-quality display; front-facing speaker; packed with features; expandable storage

Cons: Below-average battery endurance; camera could have more features; debatable build quality; BlackBerry-specific apps all need to be updated

Verdict: 6/10

BlackBerry Priv available from R6,499

Grant Wood Managing Editor