Photo: Kevin Smith/Business Insider
BlackBerry’s last-chance play was to introduce BlackBerry 10, a reimagined mobile operating system for its devices.At first blush, it’s an appealing way to interact with your device. It’s visually pleasing, it’s straightforward, and since it was built from scratch, it offers you a brand new user experience.
But will it be enough to topple iOS, one of the giants in the mobile space?
Both iOS 6 and BlackBerry 10 have nearly identical offerings with the out-of-the-box apps. You got your email (both integrate perfectly with Gmail and Yahoo!), calendar, maps, alarms, and the like. Of course Apple's maps app is something of a pariah now, but going either way on this will net you pretty much identical results.
This is almost entirely a function of having been around so much longer. Apple's App Store now several hundreds of thousands of apps while BB10 launched with just 7,000 apps available.
Furthermore, if you want to use apps and play games that are in the public consciousness, you're almost certainly going to want an iPhone.
BB10's notifications are all channeled through 'the Hub,' a landing spot for your emails, texts, Facebook messages, Twitter mentions, and the like. Apple's Notification centre functions the same way, except that BB10's Hub allows you to read and reply to your alerts without opening the corresponding app.
However, BB10 does not offer pop-up notifications like you've seen with iOS. You have to rely on some sort of alarm to go off, whether it's an audible sound effect or vibration.
A common complaint about iOS is that it doesn't allow for customisation the same way that Android does. Unfortunately the same seems to pretty much be true for BB10 as well.
Both allow for little more than moving icons around, creating folders, and changing the wallpaper. The differences here are negligible.
The major comparison is that while iOS is a mobile operating system that's been slowly improved and updated over the years, BB10 was built from scratch and can offer its users a brand new experience.
This may be enough of a call to get disillusioned Android and iOS users to drop their phones.
As Business Insider's Steve Kovach previously explained, BB10 is at least two years overdue, which has given consumers plenty of time to establish themselves with iOS or Android. It's a hard sell to convince people to switch from a mobile OS they already know.
On top of this, developers tend to prefer to make apps for iOS first and Android after that. With BB10 representing an entirely new platform, it's going to be tough to convince developers to create awesome apps for a phone that doesn't have as widespread of an audience yet.
In short, it looks grim for BlackBerry.