BlackBerry Z3 review


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The BlackBerry Z3 is the latest offering from the iconic brand in India, and for its asking price, is also the most affordable one running BB OS 10. The 5-inch smartphone boasts a solid build quality and reasonable specs, and from what we've seen, comes across as a dependable workhorse. Here's a quick review of the BlackBerry Z3, covering its specs, features, interface, camera and performance.

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BlackBerry Z3 review

  1. 1. BlackBerry Z3 Review in pictures
  2. 2. Not really a ramp model, but a solid partner • Looks rather elegant, but in a subtle way • Feels a tad large for a 5-inch device • Unibody design with non- removable battery and a tab on the side covering the micro-SIM and microSD slots • The rear panel totes a chequered pattern that looks nice and also aids in grip. It doesn’t smudge easily too
  3. 3. A reasonably capable display • The 5-inch display sports a resolution of 540 x 960 (220ppi) • Colours are crisp, but text doesn’t look too sharp • Brightness and sunlight legibility are decent • Very responsive to touch
  4. 4. Evaluating the shooting prowess • The Z3 sports a 5MP autofocus shooter. The front camera bears 1.1MP resolution • The app covers modes like burst shooting and HDR, a few scene presets, and control over aspect ratio • A nifty Time Shift feature is available too, capturing a series of images even before you actually shoot and letting you choose the best one later
  5. 5. Casual shooting for social shenanigans • Captures reasonably good results in good lighting • The HDR mode is quite capable, highlighting darker areas of shot images well • Photos taken in low light are noisy and unimpressive • The camera is just good enough for casual shooting and social sharing
  6. 6. An intuitive UI… • The Z3 runs BB OS 10.2.1 and features a swipe-driven interface • Swipe-down quick settings panel, vertically scrolling app drawer and fixed dock at bottom • Handy lockscreen previews • Swiping up from the bottom minimises a running app and converts it into an Active Frame. Up to four of these can be open at a time
  7. 7. … and dollops of features • BlackBerry Hub integrates all your email and social accounts in one place • Priority Inbox collects all the important messages • Incoming notifications pop up on top, and some apps also allow you to respond directly from here, without interrupting what you were doing • Keyboard offers text predictions, letting you flick suggested words to enter text. Hinglish and Hindi are supported too
  8. 8. Don’t worry, be appy • Baked in support for social networks like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, and cloud services like Dropbox, Box and Evernote • BlackBerry World app storefront covers all the key apps you might need and then some • Support for direct installation of Android APKs is a big plus • Lack of native Google apps is a bummer
  9. 9. Smoothness is the name of the game • A 1.2GHz dual-core Snapdragon 400 processor, paired with 1.5GB of RAM keeps things fairly smooth • Heavy games like Riptide GP2 play without any lags or freezes • There’s 8GB of expandable internal memory, out of which about 4GB is available to use for storage • Up to 32GB can be added via microSD, but can’t be used for app installation
  10. 10. The battery is a marathon runner • The device is fuelled by a 2,500mAh non-removable battery • Keeps going on and on without the need to go anywhere near a power socket • Lasts over a day, and if your usage is heavy, should still see you through a workday with ease
  11. 11. At a glance • 5-inch, 960 x 540 display (~220ppi) • 5MP primary camera, 1.1MP front shooter • 1.2GHz dual-core Qualcomm MSM8230 processor • 1.5GB RAM, 8 GB internal storage, expandable by 32GB • 2,500mAh battery • 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, A- GPS, Miracast, DLNA, Wi-Fi Hotspot • BB OS 10.2.1 • FM radio
  12. 12. - • Average camera • Doesn’t match up in terms of specs • No native Google apps Pros and cons + • Solid build quality • Smooth performance • Intuitive UI with useful features • BlackBerry Hub provides at-a-glance info on all connected accounts • Superb battery life
  13. 13. Rs 15,990 Pricing and verdict “The BlackBerry Z3 may lose the spec battle, but it excels when it comes its email experience, and thanks to the BlackBerry Hub, the ability to manage multiple accounts with ease. The App World features most key apps, and the support for Android apps makes sure you’re not left wanting. Combine that with a sturdy build and superb battery life, and you have a solid workhorse in your hands.”