BlackBerry + Android Smartphone Preview

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The BlackBerry Venice is expected to be released in November, and will be the company’s first smartphone to run Android.

BlackBerry seems to think that people are crying out for a smartphone which features the tactile keys that became the company’s calling card. To that end, the Venice brings together a physical keyboard and the Android operating system.

BlackBerry seeks to revive its fortunes with Android smartphone

Once upon a time, the mid-aughts to be exact, it seemed that BlackBerry had the world at its feet. Since then the company has struggled to keep up with industry trends, and its recent struggles have been widely documented.

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The smartphone market is now dominated by Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS operating systems, and now it appears that BlackBerry may have decided to join the rival that it could not beat.

Since the beginning of this year rumors have been swirling of a new BlackBerry handset. Various sources claimed that it would be a slide phone which runs Android, and now the first leaked photo has been revealed.

The leak came courtesy of Evan Blass (@evleaks). The image shows a BlackBerry handset labeled as running Android, but the keyboard does not appear to be as deep as those on other BlackBerry phones.

Concerns remain over slide design

Those with a nostalgic eye will notice that the design certainly borrows from the slide phones of years past, and the keyboard looks as though it will be tucked away behind the touchscreen display until you need it. The image also suggests that the Venice will look like Samsung’s Edge phones, in that the display will reach slightly around the bezel.

Although certain users would welcome the return of a physical keyboard, there are also concerns over the durability of slide phones. Past models were too quick to fall into disrepair, and most people would want to test the durability of the BlackBerry Venice before committing to buying one.

BlackBerry is in dire need of a boost, and it may well get one from the new phone. However if users are not convinced by the viability of the slide mechanism, the Venice may remain a tech curiosity for future generations to marvel at.