Blackberry Z10 Now On Sale in Malaysia (with hands on pictures & UPDATED roadshow info)

Blackberry Z10 in White colour (in a man's hand)

In case you missed my last post on the launch of Blackberry Z10 in Malaysia, read it HERE, along with other highlights of the feature of the phone as well as features of the new Blackberry 10 OS.

Last Friday, on 8 Mar 2013, Blackberry Malaysia held a party for friends and media to celebrate the availability of the Blackberry Z10.

BB Z10 Malaysia Availability Party @ Marini's on 57
BB Z10 Malaysia Availability Party @ Marini’s on 57
BB Z10 Party - Winnie
My picture taken at registration, against the Blackberry 10 backdrop

 

Yes, the first all touchscreen smartphone running on the new redesigned Blackberry 10 OS – Blackberry Z10 – is now available on sale in Malaysia, exclusively with Maxis for one month, starting 9 Mar 2013 at all Maxis Centres nationwide.

 

Maxis’ “BB More” Plans for Blackberry Z10

As a reminder, the Blackberry Z10 is retailing at RM 2,188. Being the exclusive partner,  Maxis introduced a new “BB More” Plans exclusively for the Blackberry Z10, from as low as RM 1,268.

Maxis BBMore Plans

** For more information on Maxis BB More Plans, visit their Maxis-Blackberry Z10 product page HERE.

Maxis is providing some additional promotional goodies for the Blackbery Z10:-

  • Maxis One Club members (loyalty program) can purchase the Blackberry Z10 for RM  988 if they signup for 24 months contract for BB More 148.
  • Hotlink (Prepaid Blackberry) customers can  purchase the Blackberry Z10 for RM 1,888 that comes with 1.5GB of free data. Promo valid from 9 Mar – 30 Apr 2013.

Maxis also announced their Maxis-developed applications for Blackberry Z10 which includes MyMaxis (Maxis self help app), Maxis PayPal, MyHealthy Heart (health tracking app), FINDER 301 (location based info/directory), Maxis BPL 2013 and Maxis Rewards.

Note : Celcom and DiGi will be selling the Blackberry Z10 with their respective plans starting 8 April 2013.

 

(UPDATED) Blackberry Z10 Roadshow and Trade Up Program

Shortly after I published this post, I received details on the Blackberry Z10 Roadshow and the start of their Trade Up Program I mentioned in my last post.

The roadshow starts today, 13 Mar 2013 until end of April 2013 at various locations nationwide, starting with Midvalley Megamall, Kuala Lumpur this whole week. Below lists the various locations where the roadshow will be:-

BB Z10 Malaysia Roadshow
List of roadshow locations for Blackberry Z10

Just to refresh your memory, Blackberry Malaysia is allowing existing Blackberry users (certain models) to trade up their current Blackberry for the new Blackberry Z10 at a discounted price of up to RM 480!

Blackberry Z10 Trade Up

For more information on the Blackberry Trade Up Program, check out Blackberry Malaysia’s Facebook Page at https://www.facebook.com/BlackBerryMY

 

Hands On & First Impression with Blackberry Z10

During the Blackberry Z10 Availability Party, there were several demo booths with Blackberry staff happy to demonstrate the phone to the guests.

BB Z10 Malaysia Availability - Demo stations
BB Z10 Malaysia Availability – Demo stations

For more features and specs of the Blackberry Z10, please visit my previous post >> All Touch Blackberry Z10 Launches in Malaysia. Of course, I got my hands on time with a very helpful Blackberry staff, who ran through some of the great features of the new Blackberry 10 OS.

Blackberry Z10 in Black colour, in my hands
Blackberry Z10 in Black colour, in my hands
Blackberry Z10 in White colour (in a man's hand)
Blackberry Z10 in White colour (in a man’s hand)

The Blackberry Z10 fits very nicely in my hands. As you can see in the picture above, nicely in a man’s hand, too.

Hardware Overview of the Blackberry Z10
Hardware Overview of the Blackberry Z10

At 9 mm thin, the phone is just slim enough to be comfortable in your hands. There were some comments around the interwebz that the plastic build material of the Blackberry Z10 s disappointing for a premium device. Personally, I don’t think this is very noticeable nor does the device come off cheap. I actually quite like the hardware, although I have to say the beauty of the device is in the software!

Blackberry Story Maker auto create a video from selected media. Also able to add filters to videos on the fly.
Blackberry Story Maker auto create a video from selected media. Also able to add filters to videos on the fly.
Camera function of the Blackberry Z10
Camera function of the Blackberry Z10

The Blackberry staff was nice enough to let me scroll around the device on my own, while he explains the features of Blackberry Hub (your one stop unified inbox), Blackberry World (the new BB10 App Store) and general UI and navigation.

He also demonstrated some cool media functions on the new OS. For example, you snap a picture by tapping anywhere on the screen, instead of the usual dedicated on screen shutter button.

Blackberry Time Shift is like Samsung’s Best Face feature, where you can take a few pictures, select a subject face and it automatically changes it to stitch it into the perfect group picture.

Media post edit is quite awesome as well. You might not have Instagram app yet, but the built in media editor allows you to add different filters on the fly. This applies for both pictures and videos. The demo on applying filters on a playing video on the phone was impressive.

The other impressive media feature, for me, was also the ability to zoom in to a playing video!

Most importantly, Blackberry announced the Blackberry Flow feature, which is a complete redesigned user interface that allows you to navigate through the menu, apps, features and phone functions so much easier. Everything makes sense. Eg, tap on a name in an email to view contact details, to then click to view their LinkedIn profile. Or take a picture, then drag the thumbnail of the picture to view the enlarged version, then click on to edit the picture and add filters. It’s all just so seamless.

 

Oh! And there’ll be accessories

Some official accessories were on display, but was placed in a perspex box, so I couldn’t get my hands on it. Nevertheless, here’s a picture (with bad sunlight glare) of what you can consider for your NEW Blackberry Z10.

Leather slip cases, flip cases, back covers and more for your Blackberry Z10
Leather slip cases, flip cases, back covers and more for your Blackberry Z10

 

Do I like it?

Personally, I really like the redesigned Blackberry 10 OS.

If you’re a Blackberry user, this new OS is very different from what you’re used to, but not too different that it loses the Blackberry identity. I really feel that this is the “make it or break it” device for Blackberry in order to stay relevant in the ever competitive smartphone market dominated by the Apple and Samsung. With the new BB10 OS and great devices like this all touchscreen Blackberry Z10 and the upcoming half-touch half-type Blackberry Q10, Blackberry might have a winner here.

Now, they just need to focus really hard on getting Blackberry World (app store) up to snuff. Mind you, they now have over 70,000 apps at launch and counting. Although big names like Instagram and WhatsApp are not there yet, Blackberry is trying to court as many developers as they can by making it super easy for them to port Android apps over the Blackberry platform. I believe it won’t be long until we see more Blackberry apps that are Android ported apps.

Note : Tinkerers out there, would be happy to know that there’s workaround for you to side load apps to the Blackberry Z10 on your own. You can also do your own Android app conversion to Blackberry .bar format yourself, although Blackberry really discourages that. 🙁

Note 2 for newbies : Side load means you can download and copy the apps to the device yourself, using the sync cables.

Software and hardware wise, Blackberry has a good thing going with a new redesigned Blackberry 10. Other than a solid App Store, they need to ensure a  good Marketing campaign to educate and make the device and OS sexy again – for enterprise / consumer market.

I walked away impressed! Now, I hope Blackberry will offer me a review unit!!! *wink*

(UPDATED) Blackberry also just informed me that I “WILL” be getting myself a review unit. Can’t wait!!!

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