BlackBerry’s Android phone, codenamed Venice, continues to see leak after leak. Following the slew of images we’ve already seen, we now have a hands-on video.
In June, rumors that BlackBerry was building an Android smartphone returned in full force, followed by a big leak in July. Then in August we saw the keyboard, and also learned the device will likely launch on all four major U.S. carriers (AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile) in November.
As one who loves BlackBerry hardware but not the software, I’m excited about the potential of a proper QWERTY phone with Android apps. Today’s video comes courtesy of Bell Mobility retailer Baka Mobile:
The clip shows features like tap to wake, universal search, and even demoes the keyboard responding to touch, much like the BlackBerry Passport. This means you’ll be able to navigate the phone without blocking anything on the touchscreen.
The left side of the phone features the power and lock button, while the right side has the volume buttons and a convenience key. The top of the phone has the microSD and SIM card slots.
We’ve seen rumored specs that include a Snapdragon 808 processor, a 5.4-inch QHD LCD, 3GB of RAM, and an 18MP camera, but those could of course change. The device is expected to feature a dual curved display (think Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge) with a physical keyboard that slides up from underneath (think Palm Pre). The hardware is similar to the slider that BlackBerry showed off at Mobile World Congress in March, though that device was clearly running BlackBerry OS 10.
But all the leaks have shown Android. They also depict Google apps, suggesting Venice is getting a largely unmodified version of Android, unlike Amazon’s Fire OS, which is based on a fork of Google’s mobile operating system. We’ve also seen BBM (of course), an Android version of BlackBerry Hub, supposed Chromecast support, and Content Transfer for BlackBerry that will let you move phone data using Google Drive.
A hands-on video of the device is the best confirmation yet that BlackBerry Venice will be announced within the next month or so.