Three key features that could have made Blackberry 10 phones a success

Veröffentlicht: 13. Januar 2014 in Technology
Schlagwörter:, , , , ,

When former Blackberry CEO Thorsten Heins launched the two first Blackberry 10 phones one year ago the expectations were high. RIM had to deliver nothing short of a revolutionary phone to make it back into the relevant set of smartphone buyers. We now know Blackberry failed. The two phones Blackberry Z10 and Blackberry Q10 were no game changers. They have some nice new features but nothing that could compensate for the lack of apps that iOS and Android users love and that do not run porperly on Blackberry 10.

But what could have been such game changing features of Blackberry 10 phones that could have made them a success? I have listed three that  I think would have made a difference.

1. Touch screen with a pop-up keyboard

The physical keyboard is the main reason for current users to still stick to Blackberry. Take Ryan Seacrest from American Idol for example. Next to his iPhone he used a Blackberry for fast messaging on a physical keyboard (carrying two phones all the time made him develop Typo, a snap-on QWERTY keyboard for iPhone which is now object of a Blackberry lawsuite). Blackberry knew about its USP in the fast-typing business and that’s why Blackberry’s full touchscreen model Z10 was introduced with a superior text prediction tool. This tool is innovative but not an option for advocates of a physical keyboard because the haptical feedback is missing. Blackberry knew this and launched the QWERTY model Q10 in parallel to Z10. It’s a great phone with a superior physical keyboard but due to the fact that the keyboard takes a lot of space the screen is comperatively small. The user has to decide what is more important to him, the haptical keyboard or the big big screen. It would have been a revolutionary feature to offer him both in one phone. Tactus Technology is developing a full touchscreen with an option to extend haptical buttons when you are typing. That technology would be a great fit to the Blackberry brand and the phone.

Touchscreen with pop-up keyboard

2. Fingerprint sensor for comfortable unlocking

When Blackberry introduced the Blackerry 10 phones the iPhone 5s with its fingerprint sensor was not on the market yet. To be the first to offer phones with integrated fingerprint sensor would have been a great competitive advantage – at least in the field of business users who typically are obliged to lock their phones and are fed up with entering the PIN code again and again.

3. Full Android integration at least for private use

Blackberry 10 was most criticized for the comperatively low range of apps. RIM knew that beforehand and developed routines to convert Android apps into Blackberry 10 apps. Unfortunately the converted Android apps don’t run well on the differing OS. Also things like real widgets – that Android users love – are missing in Blackberry 10. Those problems could have been solved by using Android as a secondary OS on Blackberry 10 phones. I imagine a task sharing like this: Backberry OS for all work related issues (much better security and efficiency standards) and Android with its great variety in apps and features for private use. The seemless OS switch would surely have been extremely challenging from the engineering point of view (like all the features listed here) but from the user’s perspective that could have been the game changing feature that Blackberry needed.


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