Review: BlackBerry Classic
The BlackBerry Classic is not a bad phone, not by any stretch, but it isn't a good phone, either. As has long been BlackBerry's problem, the Classic is a one-trick pony. Meanwhile, every other pony in the stable has learned compelling new tricks.
The Classic is a fine piece of hardware that has a good mix of materials and design. Call quality is excellent, network performance solid, and the battery life (still) beats the pants off an iPhone. The keyboard is the best in the business, though it's also pretty much the only keyboard in the business. The keys feel great, but I'm faster swiping across glass at this point. BlackBerry Hub is unrivaled in its ability to fine-tune and manage the inbox experience. The phone also lets you accomplish a lot with just one hand, unlike many of today's bulky flagships.
As excellent as the Classic is for managing email and other messaging tasks, it's miserable at everything else. The selection of apps is abysmal and those that are available are inferior to their Android/iOS counterparts. BBM is a great messaging app, but hardly anyone uses it anymore. I think it really says something that the iPhone is better when it comes to creating/editing Microsoft Office documents, too. (The Classic has a crappy, third-party Office viewer.)
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I can only recommend the BlackBerry Classic to two groups of people: 1. Die-hard BlackBerry fans who simply won't use any other device; and 2. People who seriously — and I mean seriously — live and die by blasting through their email as quickly as possible. If you like to do anything else with your phone (take photos, watch movies, play games, flirt on dating apps), pick something else.
BlackBerry's Classic smartphone harkens back to the devices of yesteryear. Its defining feature is a physical QWERTY keyboard, something phone makers have left in the past for good reason.
Jul 5, 2016
BlackBerry today said it will cease manufacturing the BlackBerry Classic handset. The Classic debuted in December 2014 and is one of the last devices from BlackBerry to run BlackBerry OS.
May 7, 2015
T-Mobile today said it would make the BlackBerry Classic smartphone available to customers beginning May 13. The Classic has been sold by other carriers for months.
Jan 7, 2015
AT&T today published pricing details for the BlackBerry Classic and its unique model of the BlackBerry Passport. The Classic will cost $50 with a two-year contract or $420 with no commitment.
Dec 17, 2014
BlackBerry today officially launched the BlackBerry Classic smartphone. BlackBerry has been talking about the phone for the better part of six months, but fully revealed its feature set during an event in New York.
3.5" display 720 x 720 pixels
Snapdragon S4 Plus MSM8960 processor 2 GB RAM
2,515 mAh battery
Memory Card Slot, Hardware Text Keyboard, Headphone Jack (3.5mm), NFC