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article imageBlackBerry's eye-catching first Android phone revealed in photo

By James Walker     Jul 4, 2015 in Technology
The first clear image of BlackBerry's upcoming Android smartphone has appeared online. It shows a stylish, sleek handset with a slider display that curves round to the edges in the same manner as Samsung's Galaxy S6 Edge. It appears to run stock Android.
The image is the first clear full-colour shot of the phone that we have seen. Its existence was first revealed by company insiders a few months ago but this photo appears to confirm its development.
The image was posted by renowned (and now "retired") leaker @evleaks who has an excellent track record for accurately revealing specifications and photos of in-development phones. It shows a solid-looking, black-coloured phone running what appears to be a stock version of Android Lollipop.
The most interesting feature is the curved display. It appears as though BlackBerry may be directly borrowing from Samsung design here as the style is very reminiscent of the Galaxy S6 Edge. It remains to be seen whether it will also have extra functionality, similar to the news tickers and social status feeds of the Galaxy Edge, or is merely a style feature to make the display appear larger and more dominating.
The display itself appears to be raised slightly above the body of the phone. This is because it is believed to accommodate a slide-out physical keyboard. Although not present in this photo, it has been seen before in previous leaked renders.
The angle of the photo makes it hard to see the top of the device, which houses the BlackBerry logo and a front camera. The bottom is covered by a very wide speaker grille, seemingly inset beneath the display.
The phone uses on-screen navigation keys, typical for modern Android devices. Physical hardware buttons for power and volume are visible on the right side while the bottom has a right-mounted 3.5mm headphone jack and a central micro-USB port. The design is certainly eye catching and combines elements from several different rivals.
The display is evidently inspired by Samsung's "Edge" devices but the shape of the bottom seems reminiscent of mid-range Lumia Windows Phones by Microsoft and Nokia. The front-firing speaker grille is similar to that found on the HTC One, although there does not appear to be another at the top of the display to replicate HTC's BoomSound.
It is unknown whether BlackBerry's upcoming Android phones will completely replace its own BlackBerry 10 offerings. With a physical keyboard, Galaxy Edge-esque dual-curved display and a solid and stylish-looking design, the BlackBerry "Venice" has a lot to boast but may remain a hard sell to customers, many of whom abandoned BlackBerry years ago.
More about Blackberry, Android, Smartphone, Samsung, Galaxy
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