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Surprise! The BlackBerry Z30, complete with BlackBerry 10.2, is official (Updated)

Check out our review of the BlackBerry Z30 smartphone.

Here’s a pleasant and quite unexpected surprise, the BlackBerry Z30 is official. The phone has been consistently leaked over the summer, when it has been known as the Aristo and the A10, and appears to be almost exactly as we expected. It’s an important product for BlackBerry, as it’s not only the firm’s first big-screen device, but also the second full-touchscreen handset running BlackBerry 10.

While the BlackBerry Z10 sports a 4.2-inch display, the Z30 is more in tune with current trends, as a big 5-inch Super AMOLED screen is fitted to the device. While this is excellent news, the resolution isn’t quite up there with the Galaxy S4 or its peers, as it’s a less than spectacular 720p, or 1280 x 720. This provides a very acceptable 356ppi on the Z10’s smaller screen, but the Z30 must make do with 295ppi. Not a disaster, but it’s a crucial difference in this spec-obsessed world.

Inside the Z30 things have been improved, as a dual-core 1.7GHz Snapdragon processor with 2GB of RAM is powering the phone. BlackBerry has also given it a larger, 2880mAh battery, and claims it’ll provide 25 hours of regular use before it needs to be recharged. It’s fixed inside the Z30 though, and sadly there is no mention of wireless charging, one of the last major rumors surrounding the phone.

BlackBerry 10.2 installed

BlackBerry has equipped the Z30 with 4G LTE connectivity, an 8-megapixel rear camera, a 2-megapixel video call lens, NFC, and Bluetooth 4.0. A total of 16GB internal memory is yours to fill up, plus a microSD card slot is on hand to give that figure a boost. BlackBerry has also fitted a new antenna to the Z30, which it says improves the signal in poor coverage areas.

The Z30 will come with BlackBerry 10.2 installed as standard, which offers performance and stability improvements, plus a selection of new features. Look out for the BlackBerry Priority Hub, where all messages, emails, and social networking notifications are collected and organized in one place, plus BBM messages are shown and can be interacted with no matter where you are in the OS, or what app you’re using.

BlackBerry’s not hanging around with the Z30, as it’ll be on sale in the UK and the Middle East next week, with the rest of the world – which we’ll take to include America, although it’s not specifically mentioned – over the next few months. The price is to follow, and we’ll update here when announcements are made.

Updated on 09/18/2013 by Andy: If you’re in the UK, you now have the chance to pre-order your BlackBerry Z30 from Selfridges, where it has been priced at £600. Yes, that’s around $950. If you do, deliveries are scheduled to take place on September 26.

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