The BlackBerry Passport is now available in Malaysia, exclusively from Celcom. Retailing at RM2,399, the latest BlackBerry flagship device is offered as low as RM788 on its Celcom First postpaid plans.
The Passport offers a wide 4.5″ screen and a new keyboard which also doubles up as a touchpad. Powering the device is a 2.2GHz Quad-Core Snapdragon 800 processor with 3GB of RAM and there’s also 32GB of storage on-board. Keeping you going all day long is a 3,450mAh battery which is rated to last for 30 hours.
The bundled BlackBerry Passport pricing are as follows:
Celcom First One Plan 3GB (RM68/month) – RM1,538
Celcom First One Plan 5GB (RM88/month) – RM1,388
Celcom First Prime + 5GB (RM128/month) – RM1,188
Celcom First Premier + 5GB (RM168/month) – RM1,038
Celcom First Elite + 5GB (RM238/month) – RM788
All bundles are tied with 24 months contract duration and there’s an upfront advance payment between RM400-RM1,200. Full plan details after the break.
Right after its global announcement, the latest BlackBerry Passport is officially launched in Malaysia today. The wide screen passport-sized flagship smart phone is priced at RM2,399 and it will be available starting 10th to 31st October exclusively with Celcom. Bundling with Celcom postpaid plan starts from RM638. It will be available across its network of dealers beginning 1st November.
To recap on the specs, the Passport gets a squarish 4.5″ 1440×1440 display that pushes a pixel density of 453 ppi (pixels per inch). Meanwhile at the bottom, its signature BlackBerry QWERTY keyboard gets skinnier with 3 rows of keys but it is much more usable as it doubles up as a touchpad.
The new BBM 2.0 brings BBM Voice which allows users to make voice calls over WiFi or Mobile data. There’s also BBM Channel which lets you chat with other users on certain topics of interest.
Location sharing is also new with BBM 2.0 and you can share it in real time with time limit as well. Attaching pictures is said to be easier and there’s even Dropbox support which allows transfer of large files.
Head after the break for the promo video highlighting the new features.
BlackBerry has finally announced its premium Porsche Design P’9982 that runs on their latest BlackBerry 10 OS. Underneath the internals are the same as the BlackBerry Z10 but comes with a much generous 64GB of on-board storage. If that’s not enough, there’s also an expandable microSD slot that supports up to additional 64GB.
It is powered with the similar dual-core 1.5GHz with 2GB of RAM and the screen retains the identical 4.2″ display that does 1280×768. Juicing up the device is a 1,800mAh battery and it also supports 4G LTE with our local telcos(Band 3, 7) supported. For imaging, it comes with a 8MP main shooter and a front facing 2MP camera that does 720p video.
What you get for the premium price tag is the use of more upmarket materials. The back is wrapped with Italian Leather while the frame is made of stainless steel. For that extra exclusivity, the Porsche Design BlackBerry comes with a special BBM Pin number that starts with 2AA prefix. BlackBerry also offers a variety of accessories including a uniquely designed leather sleeve and multi-coloured leather back covers.
On the software side, there’s a customised Porsche Design look and feel as well. With the use of premium materials, the Porsche Design P’9982 is slightly thicker at 9.5mm (Z10: 9.0mm) and heavier at 140 grams (Z10: 137.5grams).
Being a Porsche Design, the P’9982 is priced at a rather premium 1,500 Pounds which is about RM7,600 if converted directly. It will be available through Harrods and Porsche Design Online Store. As comparison, its previous BlackBerry Porsche Design P’9981 which is based on the Bold 9900 was released in Malaysia at RM6,338.
Check out the BlackBerry Porsche Design P’9982 promo video and unboxing after the break.
About 3 months ago, the BlackBerry Porsche Design P’9982 had surfaced online which is basically a premium device that’s based on a BlackBerry Z10. This marks BlackBerry’s second collaboration with Porsche Design followed by its P’9981 that was based on the BlackBerry Bold 9900.
Previously the guys at Tinhte.vn had leaked high resolution photos of the upcoming device and now they have uploaded a hands-on video which gives a better idea in terms of usability. You can watch the full video after the break.
With the recent shake up over at BlackBerry, it is uncertain if the device would actually be made available. If someone is going to pay a premium for a Porsche Design BlackBerry, the Z10 hardware looks rather dated right now and it makes more sense if the upcoming Porsche smart phone is based on the Z30 instead.
As comparison, the Z10 runs on a dual-core 1.5GHz processor, 4.2″ display and a modest 1,800mAh battery while the Z30 is kicking a faster dual-core 1.7GHz processor with a 5″ display and a much larger 2,880mAh battery. Currently the Z10 4G LTE version and the Z30 are priced at RM1,899 and RM1,998 respectively.
In just less than a week, BlackBerry’s BBM messenger has exceeded 10 Million downloads on Android. Right after its official release, the now multi-platform instant messaging service managed to rake up the top download spot with 5 million downloads after 8 hours. When it was released, there was a waiting list for new BlackBerry ID activation. Now BlackBerry has removed such waiting mechanism and those who have downloaded should be able to use it instantly.
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Now, 5 million is a massive number and, presumably, many Android and iOS users have waited eagerly for a long time to get their hands on the service. But what does it all mean?
Well, fact of the matter is, BlackBerry is still very much in the lurch. The company is on the verge of being broken up and sold for parts, while its co-founders look for cash to save the once proud organisation from the brink. Add to this the close to US$1 billion of unsold BlackBerry Z10 slowly going obsolete in warehouses and store shelves around the world and it doesn’t take a Wall Street analyst to see that the company’s continuity is grimm.
To think about it, 5 million downloads is not that impressive when you consider the number of iOS and Android users combined reach the hundreds of millions. Is there demand for BBM when users are flocking to more entertaining and open messaging platforms like WhatsApp, WeChat and Line? Perhaps. Or maybe people are just curious to try BBM to see what all the fuss is about.
But let’s look at the bigger picture. BlackBerry (previously Research in Motion) was once an industry leader. Just five years ago BlackBerry was in an enviable position, it was the fastest growing tech company, the most profitable, the most promising, and to think its most encouraging headline today is about the number of times one of its apps was downloaded — and those downloads doesn’t necessarily translate to active users mind — just tells us what a sad, sad state BlackBerry is in today.
So what does it all mean? Get ready to say goodbye to what was once a truly great industry icon.
While messaging on BBM is instant, unfortunately the activation is not. To manage a surge of new users, those who have successfully downloaded the app would not be able to use it right away. After registration with your email, BlackBerry will put you in a queue and you will be notified later once your account is ready. So far we have registered ours and we haven’t receive any notification after an hour.
While waiting for the activation, check out the official BBM demo video after the break.
UPDATE: BlackBerry has stopped its BBM roll out on Android and iOS citing leaked apps for causing problems. BlackBerry says they are working hard to get the app out to Android and iOS soon but no dates were mentioned so far.
The long awaited cross platform BBM for Android and iOS is finally rolling out. The once exclusive messenger within BlackBerry devices is finally opening up to others in an attempt to compete with other dominating cross platform IM such as WhatsApp, Line, WeChat & Kakaotalk.
Android users will be getting it on 21st September while iOS users can start downloading it on 22nd September. In terms of compatibility, it is only for devices that’s running at least Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) and iOS 6 for iPhones.
For the time being, the functionality is rather basic with just normal BBM Chat. However you still get to transfer files, photos and create group chats up to 30 people. Like BlackBerry devices, each registered BBM user will be given a unique BB Pin as well. If you’re looking for BBM Video & BBM Voice, BlackBerry has mentioned that it will be introduced for Android and iOS users in the future.
For those seeking exclusivity, it looks like BlackBerry and Porsche Design has gotten themselves busy with a new premium device. Based on the BlackBerry Z10, the above device is the purported Porsche Design P’9982 that is wrapped with upmarket materials. Obviously this is only for the selected few but it we reckon it won’t be as expensive as Vertu Ti.
So far there’s no word on the specs but it is likely to maintain the same internals of the Z10 which consists of 4.2″ display, dual-core 1.5GHz processor, 2GB of RAM and a 8MP camera. The device is expected to run on BlackBerry 10 OS with the a custom Porsche Design theme.
Last year, the Porsche Design P’9981 was launched at RM6,338 which is 3 times more than the BlackBerry Bold 9900 that its based on. So no surprises if the new one is priced above RM6,000 mark when it gets here.
Head after the break for more images of the upcoming BlackBerry Porsche Design.