Back at the start of April, BlackBerry CEO John Chen told The National, an English newspaper based out of the United Arab, that his company planned to release two mid-range Android devices sometime in 2016.
Thanks to Chinese website Berrylink and the leaked renders they’ve released, we now have a better idea of what those two devices will look like.
Continuing the company’s practice of code naming its upcoming devices after famous global metropolitans, the two phones are reportedly referred to internally as “Rome” and “Hamburg.”
Rome, the device that features a physical keyboard, looks like a more squat Priv. The major difference here is that the handset doesn’t feature a slide-out keyboard.
When Chen spoke to The National, he said the Priv’s price tag limited its success. “A lot of enterprise customers have said to us, ‘I want to buy your phone but $700 is a little too steep for me. I’m more interested in a $400 device’,” he said in his interview with the business publication.
In the same interview Chen also noted the other Android device BlackBerry plans to release this year will be a slate device. As it so happens, the Hamburg device shown in the Berrylink photos is an all touch-screen device.
There’s not much to say about this device aside from the fact that, if the renders are in fact legitimate, it’s certainly one of the better looking smartphones BlackBerry’s hardware department has put together in the past couple of years.
As with all device leaks, it’s important to take this one with a healthy amount of skepticism. In particular, the smaller Priv looks, well, too much like a smaller Priv. Either BlackBerry’s hardware team really mailed it in on the Rome, or, more likely, someone took Chen’s comments a bit too literally.
What do you think of the renders? Tell us in the comments section below.