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printed September 17, 2014
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Hands-On: BlackBerry Z10 and Q10

Z10 Q10 BB10 Comments  22  

The Q10 is a traditional BlackBerry for those who like their physical keyboard. It looks and feels almost identical to the older BlackBerry Bold designs, but in a thinner, lighter, updated package.

Everything about the Q10 looks and feels great. Those married to their older devices will be pleased with the keyboard-touchscreen combo that provides the physical feedback they need with the touch experience they want. The materials have a great feel to them. The outer shell has a nice shape (and a cool pattern) that give it a good texture and make it pleasing to hold/use.

The buttons on the Q10 are better than on the Z10. The volume toggle, in particular, is quite good, providing comfortable travel and feedback. The screen lock button on top also felt good. It has the same set of ports on the right edge, and headphone jack on top.

 

Q10

Click a thumbnail above for a larger view.

The keyboard is great. It is a classic keyboard, with scalloped keys offering excellent travel and feedback. I had no trouble pecking out messages on the Q10 in the (really) short time I spent with it.

The screen measures 3.1 inches across the diagonal and has 720 x 720 pixels. It is a good little screen, but the odd shape (square) means that it sacrifices things like watching movies in a widescreen orientation. If consuming video is one of your favorite things, perhaps consider the Z10. I found the screen to be bright and colorful, and very pixel-rich. One thing of note, it is a Super AMOLED screen, while the Z10 uses an LCD panel. According to RIM representatives, the Q10 will have vastly superior battery life thanks to the power-saving features of Super AMOLED displays.

I can't say anything about the weight of the Q10, as all the devices on hand today were tethered and couldn't be lifted without wires attached. Even with the wires attached, it didn't feel all that heavy.

The user interface of the Q10 was just as responsive as on the Z10, but the lack of physical control buttons (send, BB, back, end) will really weird out long-time BlackBerry users. It takes a while to get the hang of the BlackBerry Flow gestures to get it right.

In all, however, the Q10 is a worthy follow-up to the BlackBerries of old.

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