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BlackBerry Z3 review

6.8/10 AVG.

  • BlackBerry Z3
  • BlackBerry Z3
  • BlackBerry Z3
  • BlackBerry Z3

Informr score
The BlackBerry Z3 currently has an Informr score of 6.8 out of 10. This score is based on our evaluation of 4 sources including reviews from users and the web's most trusted critics.

What's good

  • Attractive design and good build quality
  • Good screen sharpness and color quality
  • Good battery life

What's bad

  • Noticeable lag during normal usage
  • Mediocre camera
  • Poor bright light legibility

The BlackBerry Z3 is the company's first smartphone that came from its 5-year Foxconn partnership and the third full touch BlackBerry 10 smartphone. In order to gain back market shares from Android, the Z3 offers a budget price tag, though this also means that it doesn't have the latest and greatest hardware. At a glance, however, the phone's design and build impressed reviewers. NDTV describes the Z3 as "ridiculously good looking" and adds that the rear textured plastic makes it pleasing to hold in-hand. Spanning the front is the 5-inch LCD display. Although it only offers a qHD resolution of 540x960 experts were satisfied with the overall sharpness and color quality although they did have issues with bright light legibility.

As an entry-level device, the Z3 internal hardware is utilitarian. It offers a scant 1.5GHz dual-core processor and 1.5GB of RAM but critics add that it still manages to offer decent performance and run multiple apps in the background. Still, they did notice some lag when swiping through the main menu and when playing some games. Included with the phone is 8GB of internal storage, which can be expanded up to 32GB via a microSD slot. The 2500mAh battery is non-removable and, according to reviewers' real-time tests, averages around a full day of moderate usage.

Like the rest of the phone, the main camera for the Z3 is decent but not great. It offers a 5MP resolution and an LED flash for low-light photos. Critics note that while it takes okay pictures in good lighting, it struggles with focusing in low light situations. Fone Arena notes that while daylight and macro shots are good, "…details are missing and the colors are not vibrant." N4bb, on the other hand, states, "I consider the Z3 to have one of the best cameras for BlackBerry 10 device."

While the Z3 doesn't sport the highest specs among the BlackBerry family, experts were pleasantly surprised. Crackberry describes it as "…a very well-rounded device overall" despite some issues with lag and underwhelming camera.

Operating system
1.2 GHz
Screen Size
5+ MP

What the Critics Are Saying...

The Mobile Indian

The BlackBerry Z3 impresses in terms of design, battery back up, and performance. However lack of dual SIM, average cameras and the absence of games especially would definitely push some potential buyers away from it.For BlackBerry loyalists, the Z3 definitely is a good choice. Even those who are lo...

- Anil Satapathy, The Mobile Indian
Fone Arena

The BlackBerry Z3 is a bit overpriced compared to Android smartphones with similar specifications in the price range. Even the BlackBerry Z10 with a better display and hardware is available. For the price, the Z3 has a solid build, comes with a decent display and offers good battery life. It can als...

- Srivatsan, Fone Arena

The BlackBerry Z3 is a solid phone. Comparing specifications and capabilities, it doesn't look good next to Android-based phones in its price range. On the other hand, if you value build quality, deal with hundreds of emails per day and don't have any use for multimedia features, it comes out on top...

- Jamshed Avari, NDTV

Prices (Where to Buy)

Common Questions

The Z3 price will vary depending on retailer, age, special offers and whether or not it's purchased with a service plan. If purchased with a 2 year service contract for example, you would likely pay much less for the phone itself up front. You can compare BlackBerry Z3 prices from around the web here on The Informr.

We've got you covered! Download a free PDF copy of the BlackBerry Z3 user manual here.

BlackBerry backs up the Z3 with a 1 Year parts & labour warranty.

If your Z3 has problems and is still within its warranty period, you could contact BlackBerry support or the retailer you purchased the phone from. You'll find BlackBerry's contact information here. If your phone is off warranty and needs repair for a physical problem such as a broken screen or bad battery, you should visit an authorized service centre or a local phone repair shop. You can also connect with others in The Informr Community Forum to find and share answers to questions.


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Quick view

Screen Size

The BlackBerry Z3's screen size is 5 inches with 540 x 960 pixels resolution.

1.2 GHz

There is a Qualcomm MSM8230 Dual core 1.2 GHz processor (CPU).


The phone runs on the BlackBerry 10 operating system (OS).

5+ MP

You can take photos with the phone's onboard 5+ megapixel camera.

There is also a secondary front facing camera with 1+ megapixels resolution.

8 GB

Internal memory is 8 GB. An external, MicroSD, MicroSDHC (up to 32 GB) expansion slot is available for increased storage capacity.


The phone is powered by a Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion), 2500 mAh battery. BlackBerry's performance ratings are 930 minutes.

BlackBerry Z3 Specs

Release date April 28, 2014
Regions available USA, Canada
Mobile / Cellular Data
SIM card size
Dual SIM No
Operating System BlackBerry 10

Compare BlackBerry Smartphones

Processor Qualcomm MSM8230 Dual core 1.2 GHz
Internal Storage 8 GB
RAM 1536 MB
Hearing Aid Compatible Yes
Noise Cancellation Yes
SAR Head: 0.778 W/kg
Body: 0.85 W/kg
Languages English
Manufacturer Warranty 1 Year
Accessories Included AC Charger, Manual, Standard Battery
Power & battery
Battery Type Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion)
Battery Capacity 2500 mAh
Removable Battery No
Wireless Charging No
Fast Charging No
Video Playback Time Up to: 60 minutes
Internet Use (Wi-Fi) Unknown
Internet Use (Celluar) Unknown
Talk Time Up to: 930 minutes
Standby Time Up to: 16.2 days
Physical Characteristics
Design type Bar
Multi-Use Smart Phone / PDA Yes
Material Plastic
Colors Black
Dimensions [H x W x D] 14 x 7.3 x 0.9 cm (5.5 x 2.9 x 0.4 in)
Weight 164 grams
Water Resistant / Waterproof Unknown
Rugged design No
IP Rating No
Display / Screen
Type Color
Technology LCD
Colors 16.7 million
Resolution 540 x 960 pixels
Pixel density 220 pixels
Size 5 inches
Secondary Display No
Sensors Ambient Light, Proximity, Motion / Accelerometer, Digital Compass
Graphics Yes
Themes No
Backlit Illumination Yes
Zoom / Magnification Yes
Screen Orientation Lock Yes
Multi-Touch Yes
Fingerprint-Resistant Coating No
Additional Display Features Capacitive touch screen
Input / Navigation
Sleep / Wake Key Yes
Home Key No
Mute Key No
Input Type Touchscreen
Navigation Type Touchscreen
Predictive Text Entry Yes
Physical keyboard No
Voicemail Key No
Any Key Answer No
Voice Commands Yes
Keypad/Screen Lock Yes
External Volume Control Yes
External Media Playback Controls No
Fingerprint Sensor No
Call Management
Wi-Fi Calling Unknown
Voice over LTE (VoLTE) Unknown
Contact List Capacity Depends on system memory
Multiple Numbers Per Contact Email address, Other fields
Contact Groups Yes
Auto Answer Yes
Voice Activated Dialing Yes
Photo Caller ID Yes
Web / Email / Messaging
Web Browser Yes
Email Client Yes
Email Protocols POP3, IMAP, SMTP, Microsoft Exchange
Additional Email Features -
Messaging SMS, MMS, Blackberry
Push-to-talk (PTT) No
USB Micro-USB 2.0
USB OTG Support No
Infrared No
Bluetooth 4.0
Bluetooth Profiles A2DP, OPP/FTP, HFP, HSP
Bluetooth Audio Codecs SBC, aptX
WiFi 802.11 b/g/n
WiFi Encryption No
Mobile Hotspot Yes
Memory Expansion Slot Yes
Expansion Slot Info MicroSD, MicroSDHC (up to 32 GB)
PC Synchronization Yes
TV Out No
DLNA Support No
Data Tethering Compatibility Yes
Java Applications No
Brew Applications No
ECML / Digital Wallet No
Main Camera
5+ megapixels
5x digital
Yes (LED)
Additional Rear Camera Info
Auto focus, Effects, Geotagging, Image stabilization, Multi-shot, Night mode, Scene mode, Burst shot, HDR
Video Recording Formats
3GP / 3GPP, 3G2 / 3GPP2, H.264 / AVC, MPEG-4, WMV, ASF, AVI
Video Recording Parameters
Full HD (1920 x 1080 pixels)
Front Camera
1+ megapixels
Additional Front Camera Info
Video Recording Parameters
HD (1280 x 720 pixels)
Audio / Video
Audio Playback Yes
Audio Formats AAC, AAC+, AMR, AMR-NB, AMR-WB, eAAC+, MP3, MP4, M4A, OGG, QCP, WMA, WAV
Radio No
Video Playback Yes
Video Playback Formats 3GP / 3GPP, 3G2 / 3GPP2, ASF, AVI, H.264 / AVC, MPEG-4, WMV
Streaming Video Yes
External Speakers Yes
Headset Jack 3.5mm
Custom Ringtones Yes
Vibration Alert Yes
Downloadable Ringtones Yes
Ringer ID Yes
Haptic Feedback Vibration Yes
Speakerphone Yes
To-Do / Task List Yes
Calendar Yes
World Clock Yes
Alarm Yes
Stop Watch Yes
Timer Yes
Calculator Yes
Currency Converter Yes
Document Viewer Yes
Viewable document types XLS, PPT, PPTX, DOC, DOCX, PDF
Weather Yes
Stocks No
Maps Yes
NotePad Yes
Voice Memos / Recorder Yes
Games Downloadable
Apps Downloadable, Pre-installed (Dropbox, Evernote, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Foursquare, Youtube)
Included Software / Apps -
Additional comments
Related Links Manual (PDF)
BlackBerry Z3 Reviews
Where to buy BlackBerry Z3
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