Could RIM’s Gesture Driven BlackBerry 10 Challenge the Dominance of iPhone and Android?

blackberry 10RIM’s been battling for survival for the last few years after it was caught off-guard when iPhone and Android took over the smartphone market.

With BlackBerry 10 and new smartphones it’s planning to unveil later this month, RIM is aiming to challenge the dominance of Apple’s iPhone and Android-based smartphones and regain the relevance it once had in this market.

BlackBerry 1o:

Here’s a brief list of features RIM hopes will distinguish BlackBerry 10 from iOS and Android:

  • The interface is largely gesture driven, taking advantage of swipes from the outer bezel towards the screen from all four directions. There’s no home button.
  • The multitasking interface is presented in a grid layout with app cards that show live previews of what’s going on in an app. The interface lives on one of the pages of the home screen of the phone, unlike iOS where the multitasking tray is present below the home screen.
  • A notification center, named BlackBerry Hub, that collects notifications from all apps and a companion preview window that can easily be accessed by a swipe from the bottom.
  • A mobile browser that beats even desktop browsers in HTML5 compatibility tests.
  • The keyboard is context aware, and suggests words based on the current sentence
  • The camera takes a bunch of pictures before and after the image is clicked, letting you go back or forward in time to select the perfect shot.
  • A Siri-like voice control feature that has a dedicated button on the side of the device.

Here’s the two part video overview of BlackBerry 10 (it’s in German, but you shouldn’t have a problem following it as the captions are in English):

RIM is seeing a lot of developer interest—an essential requirement for the success of a platform. RIM recently reported that more than 14,000 apps were ported to BlackBerry 10 in an app porting marathon organised by the company.

The company plans on introducing a wide variety of hardware targeted at different segments of the population with all-touch phones, phones with physical keyboards, and phones at different price points. Here are the two phones that have leaked so far:

blackberry z10

BlackBerry Z10

BlackBerry Z10

This seems to be RIM’s answer to top-of-the-line phones like the iPhone 5 and the Samsung Galaxy S3. It has impressive specs:

  • 4.2” 1,280-by-768 display
  • 1.5GHz dual-core ARM Cortex A9 processor
  • 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage
  • 4G
  • NFC support
  • 8MP rear camera and 2MP front camera
blackberry X10

BlackBerry X10

BlackBerry X10

This is the device targeted for the loyal BlackBerry user, who still prefers the physical keyboard. Not a lot of information about this phone has leaked, but rumors say the phone sports a 720-by-720 pixels display at a pixel density of 330ppi, along with NFC and of course a 4-row physical keyboard.

BlackBerry 10 seems to be getting positive reviews from tech sites so far, just like Windows Phone 8. But as we’ve seen with Microsoft’s mobile OS, a well-designed product isn’t enough to succeed in the market. There are folks who still swear by BlackBerry phones, but they are a depleting species. Most enterprises have expanded their IT policies to include iPhones and Android phones, and BBM—once a popular feature of BlackBerry phones—can now be replaced with third party apps like WhatsApp and Hike.

In the next few months, RIM will finally know if being three years behind the competition is a mistake that can be rectified, and more importantly if a v1.0 will compete effectively with four iterations of Android and six iterations of iOS.

Via: Fortune

Images via: Tinhte

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  • Jon Dough

    A day late and a dollar short!

    • Darieon M Martin

      two days late and a couple dollars short………

      • iPhoneHacks

        Why? It looks like a solid product and besides competition doesn’t hurt us as consumers.

        • Zangpakto

          Because Apple syncs with Apple devices, Android with google items. Blackberry? What exactly does it sync with automatically? It is best for bbm, that is all black berry is worth…. if they had better business sense they would have licensed out bbm…

          • Rounak Jain

            BES servers, they still rule the enterprise, although RIM seems to have added compatibility for iPhone and Android with BES servers.

        • Jeremy Taco Patterson

          It would have been a lot easier to KEEP their market share than to have to fight to regain it against some VERY STIFF competition.

  • Kimk69

    Kinda cool in some ways but I feel that it’s gonna be another Palm.

  • Post

    As an iphone user I think this is great and will hopefully push apple to innovate. For instance a gesture to bring up settings so I can get to whatever I need with a gesture and a single tap. Right now I have to quit app I am on, slide to where I have my settings app, open it, find the right category, open that and then make my selection, quit app.

    • iPhoneHacks

      Yup, it’s high time Apple brings features for the power users.

      Apple could take things to a completely new level if they allow themes and tweaks in the App Store as pod2g had suggested.

    • Pacomacman

      Lets get this right, you don’t ‘quit an app’ you switch from one app to another, there’s a big difference. As an iPhone user I agree with you that this should push Apple as it looks a pretty sound OS, but then so did the Playbook and look where that got them. Apple need a better task manager for sure, and shortcut icons for turning on/off features would be nice.

  • wolverinemarky

    not bad outing from blackberry i dont see it overtaking iPhone or Android maybe windows we will see in time. would definitely like to see some tweaks that we have in the jailbreak community become standard.

  • Edgarg

    For me they’re just too far behind. The playbook looked promising but then I see they don’t even have skype support. Nobody seems to care about BB anymore.

  • Roman Verhovsek

    v1.0 -> v2.0 -> v2.1 -> v10
    I see 4 iterations :-)