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Venice: the slider smartphone that might revive BlackBerry

BlackBerry Venice

Leaked image reveals the stunning design of the forthcoming BlackBerry Venice

Slider phones lost popularity faster than Tony Blair in the mid-2000s, but leaked shots suggest BlackBerry is reviving the concept in some style with its new Venice handset. The photo (first published by Evan Blass) shows a sleek handset with a curved screen, similar to that of the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge

Yet, slide that screen upwards and you’ll find the company’s trademark hardware keyboard, ready to serve the legions of BlackBerry fans in legal and accountancy firms all over the globe. Oh, and British teenagers. The screen itself is 5.4in, with a resolution of 1,440 x 2,560 spanning across that curved display.  

The Venice isn’t all about the slick exterior – it’s got some serious hardware on the inside too, according to the leaked specs. The phone’s 64-bit Snapdragon 808 system-on-a-chip includes an eight-core 1.8GHz processor and Adreno 418 GPU. There’s a relatively generous 3GB of RAM to back up that processing power. 

The device will have two cameras: an 18-megapixel rear-facing snapper, and a 5-megapixel selfie sensor on the front. And those of you who have been paying attention to the leaked image will note it’s running Android, not BlackBerry’s own operating system. The Venice is expected to come in two versions: one running Android and one that perserveres with the beleagured BlackBerry 10 OS. 

The Venice isn’t expected to be launched until the back end of the year, with no word as yet on price or availability in the UK. Given the spec and BlackBerry’s well-heeled target audience, we would expect it to come in at the top end (£500+) of the market. 

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