Blackberry Z10 Smartphone Review
by Stuart Davidson - 22nd February 2013
Blackberry 10 Software
Blackbery 10 was released with the Z10 and is the latest mobile operating system from, well, Blackberry. Our user experience begins with an initial boot which takes a minute or so and then the phone presents us with a setup wizard, standard for a new smartphone. During this stage we accept the terms and conditions, set up our Wi-Fi and network and then as a nice touch the phone checks for any OS update. We are also prompted to sign in to our Blackberry ID, or create one and then the final screens in the tutorial give us a quick demo/test of the gesture based commands.
Next up is our first view of the "home" screen in Blackberry 10. The main screen which we return to by defaut has tiles/windows which shows recently used apps. We can close them from here or quickly bring them back to full focus. A swipe to the left takes us to Blackberry Hub, more on that shortly. A swipe down from the top of the screen brings up advanced settings and moving to the right shows our installed apps. Also present on the main screens are three on-screen buttons. One for call, the other for search (Blackberry use Bing) and then camera.
Blackberry Hub is designed to offer a single screen where all of our communications take place. We can compose messages in here and see quick previews of new items. Speaking of composing, the keyboard provided by Blackberry offers predictive text where possible words are suggested on the keyboard as we type. Hit one to select it and then hit the "space bar" to insert it or swipe it up.
The lock screen offers us some basic information along with new message previews and a quick link to the camera while a dock mode allows us to view items such as a clock.
As noted earlier a right swipe takes us into a list of the phones applications. A number of key items are installed by default from the basics such calendar, BBM and pictures through to more advanced Blackberry Maps (with traffic updates), Office (Docs To Go), and Music/Video. Social media is also well catered for with Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, FourSquare and YouTube all available although YT is handled through the browser rather than a dedicated app at this time.
As expected additional software/apps can be installed on the phone and this is performed via Blackberry World. As with other mobile operating systems we get a selection of content types including music, video, software and games with key items promoted to us on the main screen.
Also included in Blackberry 10 is speech recognition, allowing us to dictate messages to the phone, search the net, etc.
Finally for the key software we have the browser which offers HTML5 support as well as Flash.
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