BlackBerry Priv has been available for pre-order in the UK ahead of North America by Carphone Warehouse – a move that shows that the Canadian smartphone maker is banking on its loyal customer base in the UK.
Exclusively available through Carphone Warehouse the smartphone has been priced at £579.99 SIM-free or £49 per month if you don’t mind binding yourself to a contract for 24 months. Though the price of the phone is on the higher end of the spectrum, it marks quite a few firsts – first Android smartphone from the BlackBerry; the first Android smartphone from a big brand with QWERTY keypad; and the first Android smartphone to pack BlackBerry’s DTEK. The £49 per month contract for 24 months gets you the handset and unlimited texts and minutes and 2GB of monthly 4G data.
The pre-order page on Carphone Warehouse also reveals almost all specifications of the Android smartphone. Featuring a 5.4-inch ‘dual curved’ Quad HD display, the BlackBerry Priv is has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 chip under the hood alongside 3GB RAM, a powerful 3,140mAh battery, 32GB internal storage and an 18-megapixel Schneider-Kreuznach certified camera.
While the smartphone runs Android, BlackBerry reveals that the phone comes preloaded with its enhanced security and privacy suite dubbed DTEK.
BlackBerry Priv could be the last handset from Canadian company
BlackBerry may fold as far as smartphone business is concerned company’s CEO, John Chen, has hinted while giving an interview last week.
“Sometime next year we have to make our device business profitable, otherwise I have to rethink what I do there,” Chen said at the Code Mobile conference in California last week. “My job is to make sure the value of the company is protected and increases … Even if I’m not in the handset business, getting into providing security for Android lets us provide solutions via software.”
This is not the first time BlackBerry has revealed its intentions of abandoning its smartphone dreams. Last year Chen told Reuters that if the company can’t make money on handsets, it won’t remain in the handset business.