BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB) is going to break all design boundaries with its upcoming Passport smartphone. The Canadian company is trying to reposition itself in the smartphone market. Research firm IDC estimates that BlackBerry’s market share to plunge below 1% this year. The company badly needs a blockbuster product, or at least a hit. Is Passport going to be that badly needed hit product?
BlackBerry Passport generates a lot of positive comments
BlackBerry claims that the weird-looking device is actually generating excitement among consumers. The company showed off its big, wide phablet with the physical keyboard last week. On Monday, the company highlighted some user comments and media write-ups. BlackBerry said in a blog post that the preview of Passport generated a lot of positive comments from users and plenty of media attraction.
Passport, with its unique design, is expected to be launched in September. The device will have a 4.5-inch quare display with 1440 x 1440 pixels resolution. It will sport a three-row QWERTY keyboard. The handset is rumored to come with 3GB RAM, 32GB storage and the quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor. Reports suggest that it will have 3.7MP front camera, though there are no details on the main camera.
BlackBerry has designed Passport especially for professionals
The Canadian company claims that it has designed Passport especially for enterprise users. And it offers some distinct advantages. Typing an email on the iPhone takes three times as much time as typing the same thing on a computer. People who need to do the real work rush to their computer or tablet. BlackBerry says the square screen and physical keyboard in the Passport will allow users to work on the go without compromising on efficiency. The company hopes it will be liked by professionals doing stock trading or those who need to perform real tasks like developing spreadsheets.
It could well be the first ever smartphone that makes spreadsheet usable on a smartphone screen. Of course, top-notch security offered by BlackBerry will be a big highlight. While other smartphone vendors are moving away from physical keyboards, BlackBerry is doubling down there. John Chen has pledged to make the company’s handset unit healthy or abandon making handsets.
BlackBerry shares fell 2.22% to $11.25 at 1:32 PM EDT on Monday.