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BlackBerry’s Priv Launches Into Public

A comeback or a colossal mistake?

EXECUTIVE PORTRAIT - John Chen, of the Walt Disney Board of Directors is now  CEO at BlackBerry.(DISNEY/BOB D'AMICO)
EXECUTIVE PORTRAIT – John Chen, of the Walt Disney Board of Directors is now CEO at BlackBerry.(DISNEY/BOB D’AMICO)

The jury’s still out as BlackBerry has officially released its latest phone, Priv. The device hit the streets late last week and, being BlackBerry’s phone that operates on the Android system, the reviews and reception have been less than kind with tech experts remarking the device may grow on users and that it’s likely been launched five years too late.

Ouch.

Yet, the Canadian-based company behind BlackBerry, Research In Motion, is optimistic the device that also features an old school slider keypad will be the key to relevancy once again.

“I have said many times that BlackBerry would not release an Android smartphone unless we could make it private and secure. I’m pleased to say that day has arrived,” BlackBerry executive chairman and CEO John Chen stated in a release. “With BlackBerry’s patented keyboard and the full complement of applications found in Google Play, this device expands our cross-platform strategy and gives end users the best in security, privacy and productivity, with no compromises on applications.”

Maybe not, but a review of the device for Forbes by Gordon Kelly certainly doesn’t shine an overly positive light on the Priv. Terms such as “a little fatter and heavier” and “bulk” don’t convey a great deal of appreciation for BlackBerry’s effort.

And, if reviews aren’t favorable and consumers aren’t interested it could be bad news for BlackBerry.

As the Canadian Television Network (CTV) reported, there needs to be a large number of Priv’s sold to help BlackBerry. In fact, the company is hoping for sales in the five million neighbourhood. That’s the magic number needed to have BlackBerry break even in the fiscal year.

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W. Brice McVicar

W. Brice McVicar is a staff writer for SiteProNews.

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