Blackberry is going to be releasing three new Android phones in 2016. The Waterloo company intends on issuing one new phone a quarter, for the next three quarters. The phones are code named Neon, Argon, and Mercury.
The Neon will be an entry level device and will hit the market in July or August. It will feature a 5.2-inch touchscreen with no physical keyboard. Composed of an aluminum frame with soft-coated plastic back, Neon is powered by a Snapdragon 617 system-on-a-chip from Qualcomm, the source said.
The phone is said to contain 3GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, and a 2610mAh battery, supporting QuickCharge 2.0. Its cameras should include a 13-megapixel rear shooter and 8-megapixel, front-facing selfie cam.
Argon is going to appeal to many users who want to buy a flagship smartphone with cutting edge specs. This phone will also feature a full touchscreen with no hardware keyboard. It will be 5.5 inches and it will boast QHD resolution — the same as Priv, BlackBerry’s first Android phone.
Under the hood is a Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 820 SoC, 4GB of RAM, and 32GB of internal storage, along with a 3000mAh battery, supported by QuickCharge 3.0. Other notable features should include a fingerprint reader and USB type C connector.
With even more primary camera pixels than Priv’s 18-megapixel sensor, Argon has a 21-megapixel shooter at the rear, along with an 8-megapixel selfie cam on its face.
Stretching the roadmap into Q1 2017, Mercury is the only one of these handsets to sport a physical QWERTY keyboard, as Priv does. But unlike Priv, which is a vertical slider, Mercury’s board is not concealable — think BlackBerry Passport.
It’s got a 4.5-inch screen with full HD resolution in a squarish 3:2 aspect ratio, with the entire enclosure made of aluminum. Internally, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 sits at the heart of the device, alongside 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage capacity.
Its battery apparently weighs in at 3400mAh, while its rear- and front-facing cameras offer 18-megapixel and 8-megapixel resolutions, respectively.
I like the fact Blackberry has embraced Android and made it very secure. The company really tried hard to make Blackberry 10 work, but the lack of content and support from the developer community was the kiss of death. The Priv was a hit, but the high price made it inaccessible for your average customer.
Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past ten years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and Verge.