BlackBerry Leap Launches in Nigeria, but will it sell?


Blackberry yesterday launched its newest device, the Blackberry Leap in Nigeria, Africa’s largest smartphone market and the company’s largest market in the sub-Saharan Africa.

The Leap comes on the back of the positive reception and marketing success of the Classic and the Passport. Both devices, one a classic throwback and the other a standout square, made headlines for their unique forms and direct appeal to hardcore disciples of the blackberry brand. The Leap is more of a trendy device built to draw in the crowd of full touchscreen-loving smartphone users who dominate Nigeria’s large market base.

The leap boasts of a self-declared best-in-class virtual BlackBerry Keyboard. It “helps to reduce the mistakes and missteps that can hold you back,” the firm said in a press release. The keyboard learns how you write and corrects your missteps with proficiency, helping you type faster and more accurately. Powering the edge-to-edge five-inch HD display Leap is a battery that can withstand up to 25 hours of heavy use. Blackberry says the 2800 mAh battery and optimization of power consumption in the OS 10 gives users more than a full day of productive usage.

Though sleek and stylish, the Leap is still a core work phone, Blackberry Style. Equipped with support for encryption, built-in malware protection and several other data safeguard features, the company said the device is built for consumers and companies “who value security and privacy. You can feel safe in the knowledge that BlackBerry Leap was designed with the highest standards of security in mind to protect your privacy… and help secure your data against the next embarrassing and potentially costly cyberattack,” said the phone maker renowned for the high data security of its devices.

The Leap runs on the latest BlackBerry® 10.3.1 operating system which comes with updated icons and an instant action bar so that users have their most commonly accessed functions in the centre of their screen. The software includes the widely acclaimed Blackberry Blend. It also has the BlackBerry Assistant, the firm’s first digital assistant. It can be used with voice and text commands to help users manage work and personal email, contacts, calendar and other native BlackBerry 10 applications.

So, will the Blackberry Leap sell in Nigeria? The informed guess is yes. With the Blackberry Classic performing beyond expectation despite going against the general market trend, it is only expected that the Leap–which goes with the popular flow of all-touch screen– could even pull a larger number of buyers. The device will also greatly appeal to Nigeria’s rapidly growing corporate –and fun loving– community with its beautiful blend of work and play features. It also accommodates Android Applications despite running on the Blackberry OS10, best of both worlds for Nigerians who cherish the wide variety of applications available in Android app stores.

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