The Blackberry Z10 is a nice looking phone, albeit a little plain. As much as I’m not one for flashy products, the Blackberry Z10 just doesn’t stand out to me. It’s certainly not a flashy phone, specifications wise though, it’s certainly a solid piece of technology. At the heart of the BlackBerry Z10 it the trusty Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual-core 1.5GHz processor. While this particular processor may be getting a little long in the tooth, it’s still a great processor and handles everything we can throw at it.
In the time that I had to play with the BlackBerry Z10 I got pretty familiar with the workings, though I don’t doubt that there is more to it than I have experienced with it. Being an avid Android user for the last couple of years I had a much easier time switching to the BlackBerry 10 OS on the Z10 that I have had switching over to an iPhone 4 (work phone). Navigating through the installed applications was a breeze, BlackBerry put a lot of thought into the overall layout that really worked out well for me.
At this point in time there aren’t to many benchmarks that will run on the BlackBerry Z10 and BlackBerry 10 operating system. GeekBench is the only benchmark that we have found that is tests the phones hardware and not the browser. Of the three phones that we have on the bench right now, the Samsung Galaxy S III is the most comparable when in terms of the hardware specifications. The BlackBerry Z10 and the Galaxy S III both feature the Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual-core 1.5GHz processor and 2GB of RAM. The LG Optimus G also uses 2Gb of RAM, though it uses the quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 1.5GHz processor, that gave it a leg up in Geekbench. Despite the Samsung and the BlackBerry Z10 sharing the same processor and quantity of RAM the BlackBerry was able to outperform the Galaxy S III by more than 370 points.
The BlackBerry Z10 and BlackBerry 10 operating system are both new comers right now, so apps for them certainly aren’t as plentiful at this time as one might hope. As mentioned above, there weren’t many benchmarks available that will run on the BlackBerry 10 operating system. There were plenty that would run through the browser and test the browser, but limited support for anything within the operating system. It doesn’t stop with benchmarks, the more popular games aren’t available for the BlackBerry Z10. Whether or not they will be ported over to the BlackBerry OS in the future, I don’t know, I suppose it will depend on how well the Z10 does in the market. Only time will tell on that though.
The most impressive aspect of the BlackBerry Z10 that we saw happened to be the network performance. Running the bandwidth performance at www.speedtest.net we saw nearly 50Mbps download speeds! If you’re counting it was actually 49.32Mbps (but whats .68Mbps in the grand scheme of things)! The upload speeds aren’t exactly slow either, we were seeing speeds continuously hitting just under 11Mbps! Hitting network bandwidth like this makes me wonder why I still have Comcast cable internet that limits me to ~25Mbps/5Mbps (Download/Upload). That easily takes the cake of any of the network testing that we have seen in the past. AT&T has a great network in and around the Chicago Il. area.
One issue that I can see with the BlackBerry Z10 is the price. With a 2 year contract from AT&T you can purchase the BlackBerry Z10 for $199, that puts it among some of the top phones out there right now. For the same price phones like the HTC One X+, Samsung Galaxy Note, and even the Apple iPhone 5 16GB which are all tried and tested in the masses. Even the LG Optimus G is available for only $99 with a contract. If AT&T and BlackBerry could drop the price to the $50-$99 range they could probably get the Z10 out there a little more and help re-establish the BlackBerry name as a power within the smartphone market!
There are still some companies out there that only allow BlackBerry’s within the company. BlackBerry’s have the ability to keep the work and personal data separate, and the company can wipe the business data remotely while leaving the personal data intact! From a business standpoint is a very useful ability. If you happen to work in a company that exclusively allows BlackBerrys the Z10 is going to be a huge upgrade path for you!
If you are looking at a new phone with AT&T, they have a number of plans that range in size and cost. As an individual AT&T offers DATA plans for as little as $20 per month for 300Mb and as much as 5Gb. If you’re entire family is switching over to AT&T their mobile share plans are the way to go. The entry level mobile share plan starts out at $40 for 1Gb of data and $45 per smart phone. If 1GB isn’t enough for you, AT&T has you covered with plans going up to 50GB. Each of these plans includes unlimited talk and unlimited text.
Legit Bottom Line: The BlackBerry Z10 is off to a promising start. If you’re looking for something as app friendly as an iPhone or Android we might just have to wait and see how that pans out. Though if you’re looking for productivity and business applications the BlackBerry Z10 may be right up your alley!