BlackBerry Z30 Smartphone Boasts Upgraded Antenna, Priority Hub

The Priority Hub feature can now learn what conversations are important to the user, making it faster to find the messages and information.

Beleaguered smartphone manufacturer BlackBerry officially announced its latest attempt at a comeback with the launch of the Z30 smartphone, featuring the company’s BlackBerry 10 OS version 10.2 and sporting a 5-inch Super AMOLED touch-screen display.

The handset sports a 1.7 GHz processor with quadcore graphics and the largest battery yet on a BlackBerry smartphone, and combined with the battery enhancements in BlackBerry 10 OS version 10.2, the company claims users can get up to 25 hours of mixed use battery life.

The updated BlackBerry Priority Hub feature can now learn what conversations and what people are important to the user making it faster and easier to find the messages and information. It collects priority messages across email, social networking and other accounts and gives the user access to the most important conversations.

The Z30 also features a new generation antenna technology that dynamically tunes reception to give users better connectivity in low signal areas. The Paratek Antenna is designed to give users faster data transfers and fewer dropped calls in low signal areas, the company said.

"The new BlackBerry Z30 smartphone builds on the solid foundation and engaging user experience of the BlackBerry 10 platform with features like the powerful BlackBerry Hub, its exceptional touch-screen keyboard and industry leading browser," Carlo Chiarello, executive vice president for products at BlackBerry, said in a statement. "The smartphone rounds out the BlackBerry 10 portfolio and is designed for people looking for a smartphone that excels at communications, messaging and productivity. Having apps like the full Documents To Go suite that comes preinstalled, together with its 5-inch touch display, the BlackBerry Z30 smartphone gives you a best in class productivity experience on the go."

Other features include stereo speakers containing the company’s Natural Sound technology, part of BlackBerry 10 OS version 10.2 that makes BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) Voice and BBM Video chats sound more natural and realistic. Natural Sound is designed to let users hear nuances and variations in tone, making conversations sound closer and more natural.

Rounding out the device’s feature set is an upgrade to BBM that lets users get a preview of any message as it arrives in whatever app that’s being used, and allows the user to dismiss it or tap it to read the full content and respond. If a BBM message arrives, users can reply to the message without leaving the app you're in. In addition, if the phone is locked, the user can tap the various icons on the Lock Screen to see an instant preview of the most recent messages and notifications.

The company said the Z30 smartphone would roll out from select carriers and retailers around the world beginning next week in the United Kingdom and Middle East, and all other regions going into the holiday season. Specific pricing and availability will be announced by partners at the time of their respective launches, and a company release noted a variety of accessories including cases and chargers would also be available.