BlackBerry Porsche Design P'9983 hands-on

We can agree that the BlackBerry Passport is a very different design BlackBerry, one that has a useful/strange keyboard – though, the perception varies with who you talk to. That was largely our main complaint about the Passport itself, which steered a bit off course from what we were used to seeing from BlackBerry. Interestingly enough, there’s another new keyboard trotting BlackBerry smartphone that looks mighty similar to the super spec’d Passport, but its compact size and properly arranged keyboard makes it a more fitting BlackBerry that we all know and love.

What we’re talking about here is none other than the BlackBerry Porsche Design P’9883, which to the surprise of many, was actually the first smartphone to be powered by BlackBerry OS 10.3 – beating out the Passport to the punch. For us, its industrial design bears many striking characteristics to the Passport, but it doesn’t have quite as the same sturdy feel as the Passport. However, we will point out that we prefer its size and weight a whole lot more – it’s just compact and easy to hold with one hand. Donning a plastic finish, one that’s glossy, it easily gets messy due to finger prints and smudges, but when it’s clean, the carbon fiber-like pattern of its casing is profound.

Sporting a 3.1-inch 720 x 720 Super AMOLED display, it’s not as detailed or sharp when compared to the Passport’s screen, but regardless of that, it’s a pleasant and effective thing that doesn’t add any bulk to the phone’s size. Of course, being typical AMOLED technology, it produces over-saturated colors and offers wide viewing angles. The best part about the phone, however, is the physical portrait-style keyboard – one that actually boasts a fourth row that accommodates the spacebar, as well as a dedicated shift key. Those two features alone make it a significant improvement over the Passport’s layout in our opinion. Sure, it’s cramped, but buttons are raised enough and are responsive to move quickly with typing.

Under the hood, it’s powered by a dual-core 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Plus processor with 2GB of RAM. While it’s widely regarded as a dated piece of silicone, it manages to get the job done with BlackBerry OS 10.3. All told, it’s an intriguing venture for the company, especially being attached to the fashion styling of the Porsche Design name. Still, it’ll cost you an arm and a leg to pick up, but if you’re not afraid to dabble in something unique, especially for a BlackBerry, you’ll just need to fork over $1950 to pick it up.

Related phones

Porsche Design P'9983
  • Display 3.1" 720 x 720 pixels
  • Camera 8 MP / 2 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon S4, Dual-core, 1500 MHz
  • Storage 64 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 2100 mAh(14h 3G talk time)



1. Astoni

Posts: 649; Member since: Sep 28, 2013

I'd rahter buy the passport.. wait i'd rather not buy blackberry.

5. SuperMaoriBro

Posts: 533; Member since: Jun 23, 2012

Porsche should stick to cars, this thing be fugly

9. Mxyzptlk unregistered

Seems like a rather odd combination.

12. Astoni

Posts: 649; Member since: Sep 28, 2013

Indeed +1

14. GreenZone

Posts: 146; Member since: Mar 04, 2014

Ugly + fingerprint all over the place = fugly

2. rowdysheeter

Posts: 74; Member since: Sep 10, 2014

grapes are quite sour these days, for me at least.

8. Mxyzptlk unregistered

So are lemons.

3. BobbyDigital

Posts: 2125; Member since: May 29, 2014

I'd rather the trolls not come to BB posts anymore. I'd buy both.

6. meanestgenius

Posts: 22043; Member since: May 28, 2014

I'd rather the trolls not come to BlackBerry posts anymore as well. Seems some people just have nothing better to do. I'd buy both as well. Great minds think alike, BobbyDigital.

4. NobiggiFingerStrap

Posts: 6; Member since: Sep 24, 2014

looks nice. how it compares with Passport in ergonomics?

7. meanestgenius

Posts: 22043; Member since: May 28, 2014

Nice looking phone, IMO. It's another handset from BlackBerry that's different and caters to a different audience, ergo it's not for the "traditional" consumer market. I like how BlackBerry separates itself from the pack with uniquely designed handsets.

10. PK1983

Posts: 215; Member since: Aug 08, 2012

What is the point in this existing?

11. BBRYy

Posts: 29; Member since: Oct 06, 2014

Great device love it!

13. Lauticol

Posts: 404; Member since: Jun 25, 2011

Would be very nice if it had some Aquos Crystal-like screen bezels

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