But now Research in Motion Ltd., the company responsible for the BlackBerry brand, has decided to change its name to BlackBerry and bet the farm on a new device called the Z10. It’s expected to hit the U.S. market in March and features BlackBerry 10, which is an updated, slick operating system, along with polished-looking hardware. And here’s the shocka: The Z10 won’t have the brand’s famed physical keyboard.
The Z10 reviews are already coming in. So far, it’s a mostly lukewarm to positive batch of roundups. The performance of the 8-megapixel camera isn’t getting rave reviews nor is the battery life, but the tech world is praising the physical design of the device as well as its fluid software, which has a more unique look than Apple’s or Android’s operating systems. In a way, BlackBerry 10 recalls the software of the recently released Windows phones, relying on bold, interactive graphics and images rather than small, static icons. Although the camera’s overall performance was deemed lackluster, the critics are excited for the Time Shift feature, which allows you to scroll a second or two earlier than when the picture was snapped to get the perfect shot. And remember phone calls? They sound really crisp on the Z10. Not surprisingly, the one feature that everyone loves most is the one that BlackBerry does best: the keyboard. “It may be the best for any platform,” writes GigaOM.