BlackBerry’s first smartphone running Google Android is set to go up for pre-order soon, and the BlackBerry Priv will start shipping to customers on November 16th.

That’s according to a pre-order page posted on the BlackBerry website… which has since been removed. But there’s reason to think it’ll go live for good on Friday.

So how much does the phone cost? That will probably depend on whether you can buy it from a wireless carrier, but if you buy an unlocked version of the Priv, it’ll cost you $749.

priv

That’s the off contract price for a phone that can be used with either AT&T or T-Mobile in the US. It’s also kind of a high price tag at a time when Google, Motorola, Asus, ZTE, and other are offering Android phones with premium specs for $400 or less.

Still, there’s really nothing else quite like the Priv on the market.

The phone’s specs include a 5.4 inch, 2560 x 1440 pixel AMOLED display with 540 pixels per inch, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 hexa-core processor, 3GB of RAM, 32GB of storage, a microSD card slot with support for up to 2TB of removable storage, a 3,410 mAh battery, an 18MP rear camera, and a 2MP front camera.

While those specs are decent, here’s what really makes the phone stand out: it has a physical keyboard that hides behind the touchscreen display when it’s not in use. Slide it out and you can type while receiving tactile feedback — and without having an on-screen keyboard block a portion of the display.

Physical keyboards used to be common on smartphones: when the iPhone was introduced, some pundits predicted it would fail because it didn’t have one. These days, they’re rare, but they still have some fans. Now fans of the keyboard who would rather run Android than BlackBerry OS will have an option to do so again.

The phone will run Android 5.1.1 Lollipop, but it’ll also feature BlackBerry apps and services including BlackBerry Messenger and BlackBerry Hub. The company is also pushing the phone’s enterprise and security features pretty hard.

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9 replies on “BlackBerry Priv coming in November for $749 (unlocked)”

    1. Desde que dejamos de ser productores de granos basicos y empezamos a importarlos hasta los cerdos quieren hablar en Ingles…

  1. Blackberry still only get it 50% this time – first they introduce their own BB OS with limited app availability, yet the prices of their devices are right up there with high-mid range phones and flagships.
    Now they release Android device that solves the app issue and/or lets people to avoid learning curve when buying into BB OS, but the price is still exorbitant.

    I agree with the first commenter.

  2. Waiting for some offshore mfr to introduce a decent
    copy at 1/3 the price.

  3. I’d get it if it had a horizontal slide out QWERTY with more keys.

    I plan on keeping track of this though. BlackBerry’s claims of making Android more secure is interesting. One of the main problems with Android security is keeping devices patched due issues at every level: Google, OEM and carrier. That hardened Linux kernel and other security features won’t mean much if an exploit is discovered and never patched.

  4. Eep! Must support android phones with keyboards but so expensive! What to do… *sits in the corner with his N900 thinking*

    1. Collect some bottles…start now, you’ll need some time at that price. I want one too but I’m still in love with my Z10 and until BB 10 officially dies, I’m going to wait. By then (HOPEFULLY) the price will have come down on this. I still hate the name though…dumb.

    1. Maybe, but this is for those willing to pay extra for their privacy… Look up existing such products like the “Blackphone” that has lower specs but still has a price tag of $629…

      So, if you don’t care about your privacy then of course this will seem over priced but it’s providing a privacy feature on top of the cost of the phone and it depends how concerned you are about your privacy as to whether it’s worth it or not…

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