BlackBerry made a triumphant return to the space of the smartphone with the BlackBerry KEYone, a phone that brought the modern Android experience with the classic BlackBerry physical keyboard. The new BlackBerry Motion seeks to continue that momentum by increasing specifications in some key areas and losing the physical keyboard.
Although the keyboard is one of the best and most emblematic features of a BlackBerry, it certainly is not attractive to everyone. For those who want the BlackBerry KEYone experience, without the BlackBerry Motion keyboard it is here to fill that gap.
The question is: does a BlackBerry without a physical keyboard still feel like a BlackBerry or does it just become your average Android phone? Discover in our full review of BlackBerry Motion!
Blackberry Motion- Design
One thing you have to congratulate BlackBerry for is not being afraid to do something different. In a time when beveled screens, dual cameras and curvilinear and elegant designs of pebbles are all the rage, BlackBerry Motion challenges those trends.
It all starts with the design of the phone. Instead of a rounded glass or metal slab, the Blackberry Motion offers a more industrial look with chamfered edges and completely flat metal sides. The only exception is the top of the phone, which is one of the few areas that has some type of curvature.
The back has a fake carbon fiber pattern that not only looks great, but is soft to the touch and gives the phone a great grip. It is not the phone with the most comfortable or elegant sensation in the hand, since the hard and sharp edges make the phone feel very compact. But it’s refreshing to see a design that does not match the Samsung, the LG and the apples of the world.
The build quality however rivals even the highest level of smart phones. Each part of BlackBerry Motion feels robust, including the volume, power, and convenience key of the BlackBerry signature. All are constructed of metal, which gives them a satisfactory click and the convenience key has a fluted texture to avoid confusion with the power or volume keys.
Due to Motion’s touch screen design, this time there is no physical space bar to function as a fingerprint sensor like the one in KEYone. Instead, Motion has a fingerprint sensor designated by the BlackBerry logo on the lower chin. This also works as a physical start button.
The fingerprint sensor is quick to unlock and very accurate, but it was strange to use a phone with a physical boot button that clicks again, since most phones with front fingerprint readers do not have moving parts. This start button also works as a type trackpad that allows access to the notifications screen with a slide down and the app drawer sliding up.
Flanking the start button there are capacitive keys that fill the lower part of the chin quite well. They are larger than most other Android phones with capacitive keys and this also makes them much easier to press.
Blackberry Motion- Screen
Without a physical keyboard, Blackberry Motion has much more space for a larger screen. The screen is an LCD panel measuring 5.5 inches and a resolution of 1080p, which makes Motion a much better smartphone for the consumption of media compared to KEYone. The screen is quite bright, vibrant in color and has excellent viewing angles, but it lacks the darker blacks and the contrast ratio of an AMOLED screen. Due to its more traditional bezel size, it will not attract attention either if that is what you are looking for.
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Despite the bevels, it’s still a very nice screen and offers plenty of room for productivity and fun in downtime with an occasional game or YouTube video. The screen is constructed with DragonTrail glass for added strength and scratch resistance, but the durability coating is sticky to the touch and makes the screen much harder to keep free of fingerprints.
Blackberry Motion- Performance
Inside, BlackBerry Motion introduces the same Snapdragon 625 processor and 4 gigabytes of RAM as its KEYone brother equipped with the keyboard, that could be a bit disappointing if you expected specifications of flagship levels. While it may not be the most powerful smartphone on the market and will not leave you speechless when it comes to benchmarks, the Motion still works admirably in everyday use. You will notice the occasional stutter when the phone has a heavy load and some light rubber bands when sliding or sliding. but for most daily tasks, such as launching applications, searching for web-based emails or playing games that require lots of graphics, Motion is more than capable.
Blackberry Motion- Hardware
When the Motion lacks specifications, it makes up for it in hardware. At the bottom is the standard USB Type C port flanked by a single speaker and a 3.5mm headphone jack, a port that has become a rarity in 2018.
In terms of storage, the Motion comes in a 32 GB configuration, but can be expanded through microSD. Without a porous physical keyboard, BlackBerry was able to make the Motion IP67 resistant to dust and water, a feature that has become increasingly commonplace in smartphones.
One of the biggest benefits of Motion is its generous battery capacity. The Motion is equipped with a huge 4,000 mAh cell and that, combined with the battery sorption properties of the Snapdragon 625, is a recipe for a long battery life. The movement lasts me consistently two full days with a single charge and the screen in time easily reaches the 6-hour mark. My use is quite heavy with several hours of play and YouTube watching per day in addition to more typical activities, such as reading emails, sending text messages and controlling social networks, and I have been very impressed by the time the movement lasts despite the fact that my use .
Wireless charging is not available despite having a non-metallic back, but the phone comes with the standard Qualcomm QuickCharge 3.0 to facilitate stops or fills.
Blackberry Motion- Camera
BlackBerry Motion comes with the same set of cameras as KEYone. There’s an 8-megapixel front-firing game that works pretty well for selfies and a 12-megapixel camera on the back. In terms of features, the camera application is very basic and offers only a handful of modes, such as panoramic video and slow motion video. If you are a fan of portrait mode or background blur effects offered by other smartphone cameras, you will not find anything similar in the movement.
In well-lit or bright outdoor situations, the Motion camera is more than capable of taking some great pictures. The photos are sharp, detailed, full of contrast and the colors are natural. However, once the sun sets or moves inside the house, the camera quickly crumbles. The shots become very overexposed, especially in the reflections, the colors are removed, there is a lot of noise and the camera constantly seeks focus in low light conditions so that taking a picture is an arduous task.
Unfortunately, the camera does not offer optical image stabilization, which probably improves the slow performance of the camera in low light.
Blackberry Motion- Software
My favorite aspect of any Android BlackBerry smartphone has to be the software. Not only because the experience is very similar to that of the Android stock, but also because the BlackBerry software add-ons provide a ton of usefulness without appearing deceptive.
It all starts with the BlackBerry Hub, an application that makes checking your notifications a simple process. Blackberry Hub adds your emails, social networks, text messages, phone calls and more in one place, so you do not have to go back and forth between various applications. It’s one of those applications that works so well that it makes you wonder why other OEMs have not copied it.
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Then there’s the productivity tab, which is another extremely useful tool for checking calendar events, unread messages, daily tasks and the contact list. The best part is that you can easily access at any time with a slide from the edge of the screen, regardless of whether you are inside an application or on the home screen.
The BlackBerry experience would not be complete with applications like BBM and BlackBerry’s best DTEK security software, which always monitors the security status of your device and keeps all your data encrypted. There are other useful additions that we have seen before in previous BlackBerry devices, such as the privacy tone to prevent prying eyes from having a good view of the screen, and the elegant gesture of swiping in the application icons to access widgets that practically eliminates the need to put widgets on your home screen.
New in the BlackBerry Motion is the Locker application. This is similar to the secure folder we have seen on Samsung devices, as it allows you to block confidential or private information that can only be accessed through your fingerprint, pattern or access code. All this is at the top of Android 7.1.2 Nougat at this time, and, as mentioned, the software is very close to stock. so hopefully the Android Oreo update It’s not that far for the Motion.
Blackberry Motion- Gallery
Blackberry Motion- Specifications
|screen||5.5-inch Full HD IPS LCD
Resolution of 1,920 x 1,080
Aspect ratio of 16: 9
|Processor||Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 625
microSD slot – up to 2TB
12 MP sensor, 1.55 μm pixel size and f / 2.0 aperture, phase detection autofocus
|Audio||3.5 mm headphone jack|
|Battery||4,000 mAh non-removable
Fast loading 3.0
USB type C
|IP Classification||IP67 water and dust resistance|
LTE Home: B1 / 3 / 7/8/20/26/28/32/38/40/41
LTE Roaming: B2 / 4/5/12/13/17/19/39
|Connectivity||Wi-Fi 802.11 a, b, g, n, ac
Bluetooth 4.2 LE
USB Type-C 2.0
|Software*/||Android 7.1.1 Nougat|
|Dimensions and weight||155.7 mm x 75.4 mm x 8.13 mm|
Blackberry Motion- Pricing and final thoughts
The biggest disadvantage of BlackBerry Motion at the time of writing is its limited availability. It is only available in select markets, such as the Middle East, where it sells for around $ 460 and Canada for $ 599 CAD, which becomes $ 465 USD. There is no information on whether the Motion will reach the US UU Or when, but you should be able to buy it for less than $ 500. And that would be a fair price considering everything that Motion offers.
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BlackBerry Motion is a simple formula. It is essentially a KEYone but with a bigger battery, water resistance and a touch screen experience instead of a keyboard. For those who claim for a BlackBerry without a keyboard, Motion is their answer. Hopefully BlackBerry will make it more accessible before it’s too late.