Inexpensive BlackBerry Leap targets young businessmen

Aims to grow market share by expanding budget smartphone portfolio

Young professionals on a budget are being targeted by BlackBerry as it expands its inexpensive smartphone portfolio with a 5-inch device called the BlackBerry Leap.

BlackBerry describes the Leap as “an affordable, all touch smartphone”. Its 16:9 touchscreen spans 5-inches, has a 1280x720 resolution and a 294 pixel-per-inch density.

Processing innards are modest. BlackBerry’s 10.3 operating system is handled by a 1.5GHz dual-core CPU, 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage. Memory can be increased with compatibility for microSD memory cards up to 128GB in size.

BlackBerry claims the 2800 milliamp-hour battery will keep the Leap running for “up to 25 hours [with] heavy use”.

A rear 8 megapixel camera can record Full HD videos, while the front 2MP camera can be used for high-definition video conferencing.

Advanced BlackBerry features are made available with the Leap smartphone. Support with BlackBerry’s Blend means all of the smartphone’s communications can be virtually handled over a PC or tablet, and it benefits from BlackBerry’s renowned security credentials.

Immature application support is one of the Leap’s downsides as BlackBerry’s platform is less mature than that of Apple’s, Google’s and Microsoft’s.

BlackBerry has priced the Leap smartphone at $US275. Good Gear Guide will provide updates on local availability and pricing.

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Tony Ibrahim

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