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Hands-on: BlackBerry Z3. It’s most affordable BlackBerry 10 Device

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The BlackBerry Z3 goes on sale in Malaysia today at RM699. This is their most affordable BlackBerry 10 device which slots below its current BlackBerry Q5 model. If you’re planning on buying the Z3 on contract, both Maxis and U Mobile are listed as telco partners but they have yet to reveal any bundled plans at the moment.

The BlackBerry Z3 gets a 5″ screen which is the same size as its high-spec BlackBerry Z30 but it pushes a lower qHD resolution at 960×540 pixels. Underneath, it runs on an entry-level dual-core 1.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor with 1.5GB of RAM. There’s also 8GB of storage which can be expanded with microSD.

The back camera is a 5MP unit and it features the same camera features including Time Shift and it is also capable of shooting Full HD videos. At the front, it settles for a lower 1.1MP camera that does HD 720p videos. The BlackBerry Z3 battery should be able to last the whole day as it comes with a non-removable 2,500mAh capacity unit which is even bigger than the high-end BlackBerry Q10‘s 2,100mAh capacity.

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In the hands, the BlackBerry Z3 is quite a sturdy device and it is quite thin at 9.26mm and weighs 164 grams. As comparison, the flagship Z30 is 9.3mm thick but the earlier Z10 model is still thinner at 9.0mm. Despite being an affordable entry-level model, the BlackBerry Z3 looks like a serious business tool with its boxy design, squared edges and a nice textured back which is non-removable.

While playing around with the device, the display is actually quite decent and switching between apps feels rather smooth as well. If you’re planning on making a jump to a BlackBerry 10 phone on a budget, the BlackBerry Z3 at RM699 is finding itself at an awkward spot.

Its older BlackBerry Z10 with 4G LTE is now priced officially at RM818 and it offers a better 4.2″ HD 720p display, a dual-core 1.5GHz processor with 2GB of RAM, 8MP camera and double the storage at 16GB capacity. Some retailers are selling the Z10 with 4G LTE at RM765 which we feel is a better buy than the Z3. It would probably make more sense if BlackBerry were to price the Z3 lower below RM600 considering it is priced at 2,199,000 Rupiah (about RM595) in Indonesia.

BlackBerry Z3 Hands-on Video

BlackBerry Z3 Hands-on Photos

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