BlackBerry launches first Android-based smartphone in India

New Delhi, Jan 28 (IANS) Canadian mobile manufacturing company BlackBerry on Thursday unveiled Priv — its first “secure” high-end smartphone powered by Android for Indian market here.

With a unique sleek design and touch-sensitive keys that allows users to swipe, scroll and set up shortcuts, Priv comes pre-loaded with BlackBerry’s DTEK for Android that allows user to improve privacy level and monitor access to the phone.

This app alerts the user every time any app attempts to access data, or turn on the phone’s microphone or camera making the phone safe from hacking and data theft.

The phone has a 5.4-inch OLED display with 2560×1440 resolution and Corning Gorilla Glass 4 protection and is powered by a hexa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 processor assisted by 3GB RAM.

The single SIM 4G phone runs Android 5.1.1 (Lollipop) OS and has an 18-megapixel primary and 2-megapixel front camera.

Having a 32GB of internal memory (expandable by up to 2TB), the phone comes with a mega 3,410 mAh battery for longer hour operations.

Once synonymous with business class phones, BlackBerry lost its luster after Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS came into the market.

The company said with Priv, they are catering to the demands of users who want both — unique features of BlackBerry smartphones and the flexibility of a large number of apps and a wider ecosystem.

In December last year, the Canadian company’s CEO John Chen hinted that BlackBerry may also launch a second high-end Android smartphone in 2016.

Chen said if BlackBerry PRIV does better, “we will focus on the high-end, probably closer to mid-range, coming out in 2016”.

The Canadian mobile technology firm reported a bump in revenue in its latest quarter with cash and investment balance of $2.71 billion.

First launched in October, the smartphone went on sale in the US and Canada in November last year.

Priv is priced at Rs.62,990 and will be available from January 30.

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