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Published on March 2nd, 2013 | by AnnLouiseWinter

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An Introduction to the BlackBerry Z10

The BlackBerry Z10 is the brand new touchscreen-only smartphone made by BlackBerry.  There will be a traditional QWERTY keyboard version of this phone, called the Q10, but that is still a couple of months away.  They both carry the completely new and re-designed OS 10 based on QNX.

Z10 (left) & Q10 (right) - BlackBerry's exciting new phones with a brand new OS

white Z10 & Q10

No matter which colour you prefer, so long as it’s black or white lol, you have your choice.  Personally, I have the white Z10 as I think it’s very classy-looking but everyone has his/her own preference.  As the Q10 has not been released yet, this article will concentrate on the Z10.

BlackBerry has actually been designing and developing the BlackBerry 10 OS and handsets for approximately 2 years. Two of the major breakthroughs were the acquisitions of  QNX and The Astonishing Tribe (TAT).  QNX is a micro-kernel OS that is so secure that automobile manufacturers and even NASA use it.  BlackBerry 10 is built on QNX.  TAT constructed a graphical user interface that is very fluid and attractive to use.

What does this mean to the average consumer?  The BlackBerry 10 (BB10 from here on) OS is smooth and easy to use.  It is very intuitive.  There is no “home” button and no opening and closing of apps when the user transfers from one to another in the course of getting things done.  If there is any “home”, it is the Hub–it is an area that is always running behind the scenes and where all your messages (BBM, SMS (text messaging), MMS, e-mail, alert notifications, social sites (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc) are gathered together and displayed whenever you want to check them.  You do not need to open any type of messaging app or folder to check to see whether you have messages.  They are all there–accessible with a simple swipe of the thumb: The traditional BlackBerry blinking red light goes off to indicate message received–from within an app you simply push the app up a little to check what type of message you received.  If it is something you want to attend to, you then swipe the app to the right, going directly into the Hub to check your message.  While you are checking it, your app is still running so you do not lose any of your progress or train of thought.  If it is a game, it pauses while you are checking your messages.  When you are done checking, you just swipe from right to left, in effect pulling your app back on top, like layers of a cake or an onion. If the message is something you don’t want to check right away, just let go of the app and it will come back to full-screen mode.

Peek

Interestingly, since everything in the BB10 OS is built around the Hub, the layering of apps and even messages within the Hub always lets you get back to the centre (probably the origin of the Hub designation).  Even if you are reading, say, an e-mail, and receive an incoming message, you don’t have to tap “back”, “back” several times to get to the Hub to check–you just pull your e-mail to the right and this bypasses the individual e-mail account to reveal the indicator icons for each type of message to tell you what you just got.  Again, just swipe to the right to go to your new message or let go to return to the current one.  Simple and very efficient!

Peek into the Hub

Best suggestion is to go to your local carrier/retailer and try one out for yourself.  It is an awesome new phone built for the future!

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About the Author

I live in Canada and love tech. I've had various smartphones since 2004 and from these experiences (both good and bad) I favour BlackBerry.



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