Blackberry Leap Express Review: Nothing wrong here, but still a tough sell

BlackBerry Leap is good option for those looking to pick up a second phone purely for their work profile.

Rating: 4 out of 5
Written by Nandagopal Rajan | New Delhi | Updated: May 14, 2015 7:11 am
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Blackberry has changed. For years the company tried to sell you secure phones. Now,  that this strategy is not really working, the company has decided to sell security for your devices, whichever platform they might be on. Things are looking up. But that does not mean it will stop selling phones. The company has just launched the Leap, its next mid-range phone.

PICTURES: Check out the new BlackBerry Leap smartphone

READ: BlackBerry looks to gain new ground with SIM virtualisation, BBM Meetings

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BlackBerry Leap

The Leap is a natural progression of the Z3 and looks and feels a bit like that phone. The design is sleek and contemporary. There is a textured back which makes gripping and working with the phone real easy.

Specs: 5.0 inch (720x1280p, ~294 ppi) | Dual-core 1.5 GHz Qualcomm MSM8960 Snapdragon S4 Plus with 2GB RAM | 16GB storage, expandable up to 128GB | 8MP rear camera, 2MP front | BlackBerry OS 10.3.1 | 2800 mAh battery

Price: Rs 21,499

What is good?

The BB 10.3 OS is really smooth. A lot of people complain that BlackBerry devices slow up over a period of time. I cannot say if this phone will also slow up. But for now it works really well. The OS offers good features like Blend for remote productivity and a voice assistant that really works in Indian conditions. This is still the most productive operating system for people who want to work on a smaller screen.

For people who use their phone for serious stuff, the battery has always been a pain point. The Leap has no such issues. I managed close to 30 hours on a full charge.

The camera quality of the BlackBerry Passport was a real surprise to most people. The Leap too does we’ll on that front. The camera works particularly well for those who have to click snaps of documents as the pictures offer that clarity.

The biggest complaint against BlackBerry has been the lack of popular apps on its store. But that issue has been long solved with BlackBerry adding the Amazon app store natively on its new phones. You now get the best of Android apps with Amazon keeping the bad ones out of its store.

What is bad?

Nothing much. I, however, think they could have priced this phone just under Rs 20,000 as most of its competition with similar specs is. As a user I might not switch to a BlackBerry as Google services like Docs and Analytics are still not available on these phones. Given the sway Google has on many Internet-based industries, a lot us will have to stick to iOS or Android till that is fixed.

Should you buy?

Yes, if you are looking for a mid-range BlackBerry smartphone. This is also a good option for those looking to pick up a second phone purely for their work profile. But I can’t recommend the phone to those who don’t have an issue sticking to or picking up an Android phone.

 

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