The unorthodox BlackBerry Passport is garnering some genuinely positive reviews, even from those who were at first a little weirded out by the form factor.
“I laughed when I first saw the BlackBerry Passport,” said IB Times columnist Anthony Cuthbertson recently. “…but after a few days with the device I’ve actually warmed to it.”
Cuthbertson says his initial trepidation was mirrored even by BlackBerry faithful.
“Held together with a steel-framed structure, this immediately feels like BlackBerry’s most premium design yet. Nevertheless, when shown to people in the financial district of Canary Wharf, even the BlackBerry faithful were wary of the way it looked and felt in the hand,” he said.
Cuthbertson says that while he thinks the bulky device is far from mobile, it is what it claims to be: a powerful tool for business users. He says the Passport’s biggest selling point is its wide screen, which manages to pack in 60 characters, rather than the standard 40. He also singled out praise for the “minimalist” QWERTY keyboard.
“With stand-out features and a design that, well, stands out, the BlackBerry Passport has improved in the all the areas that once made it the business phone of choice,” says Cuthbertson.
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The writer says the BlackBerry Passport may be the device that lures back those who have strayed from BlackBerry’s fold.
“Its success, and the subsequent success of BlackBerry in the smartphone market, will largely depend on how many of the once-devoted fans can be won back. For the moment at least, the bold design of the BlackBerry Passport has surely done enough to catch their attention,” he said.
Late in September, just days after the launch of the Passport, BlackBerry reported that it had sold 200,000 of the devices. Recent surveys conducted by Cannaccord Genuity suggest the company is struggling to keep it in stock.