BlackBerry has just announced its latest and arguably its greatest handset ever – the long-awaited BlackBerry Z30. So why is it that a product unveiling that should have been one of the most exciting and important of the year has turned out to be as thrilling as day-old toast?
Simple really – as great as the Z30 may once have been, it could be all too late for it to prevent BlackBerry going under once and for all. Call it a bittersweet swansong, if you will.
Speculation had been rife since the arrival of the first BB10 handsets that something bigger and generally beefier would be coming soon. And indeed it was…or is…as the BlackBerry Z30 ups the ante in both size and specification stakes. It boasts an impressive 5-inch 720p HD display, a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro processor clocked at 1.7GHz backed by 2GB of RAM and a superbly capable 2,880mAh battery. Apparently it’s good for up to 25 hours of use from a single charge, but the sad truth is that this is looking like its biggest claim to fame so far.
As impressive as the above spec-sheet sounds in its own right, the problem here is that the Z30 isn’t launching in a vacuum. Quite to the contrary – it’s launching when there’s already a Z10 doing the rounds that’s about 95% identical, albeit with a smaller 4.2-inch screen.
And therein lies the problem. When the majority of big and successful names in the Smartphone world launch a new Phablet or any significantly larger piece of kit, they ensure it has more going for it than girth alone. Take the Samsung Galaxy Note series or the HTC One Max as just two examples – both significantly more capable than their respective flagship Smartphone counterparts.
With the BBZ30 though, no such luck. As such, the only buyers that are going to be interested in the Z30 are those that loved the Z10 but aren’t keen on using it with one hand – a selective target audience at best.
For the rest of us, the Z30 holds no more appeal than the Z10 which has already lost its spark – chances are it won’t help that the Z30 will carry a rather premium price tag.
What’s become painfully clear is that while much credit is very much due for efforts made, BlackBerry 10 just isn’t enough to save the company from a painfully early grave. We all got caught up in the hype surrounding the Z10 and Q10 ahead of their respective launched yet the pair combined weren’t enough to re-float the sinking BB ship.
What chance, therefore, does a BB Z30 have that’s already got more of us yawning than yearning?