NOTE: This model is discontinued and may no longer be available to purchase new. See the latest cell phones or compare used prices.

BlackBerry Z30 review

8/10 AVG.
RATING



8/10
Informr score
The BlackBerry Z30 currently has an Informr score of 8 out of 10. This score is based on our evaluation of 30 sources including reviews from users and the web's most trusted critics.

The Z30 is Blackberry’s fourth smartphone based around the BB10 operating system. It features a larger screen than its predecessor, measuring in at 5 inches. The screen itself offers 1280 x 720 resolution which, while HD, is not quite as high as some other phones like the Samsung Galaxy S4. Despite the slightly lower quality, most reviewers agree that the screen offers crisp details and excellent viewing angles. While Phonearena does mention that the screen could be a tad brighter, they go on to say that the display offers excellent visibility in direct sunlight and excellent contrast.

With the larger screen comes slightly larger dimensions as well. The Blackberry Z30 measures in at 5.53” x 2.83” x 0.37” and weighs 170 grams (5.99 oz). Many reviewers find that the dimensions are actually quite comfortable in hand and fit well in most pocket sizes. Engadget does note, however, that it is difficult to use the device one-handed due to some design decisions such as not having a dedicated home button. Users must rely on the up-swipe gesture to work or shift hands in order to hit the sleep/wake button.

Under the hood, the Z30 sports a 1.7GHz quad-core processor, 2GB of RAM and 16GB of onboard storage. Although most experts agree that the specs aren’t entirely impressive, they do note that the phone generally excels at multi-tasking though they have also noticed a couple glitches that require hard restarts to fix.

One of the most impressive features of the phone is its battery. According to BlackBerry, the battery should last 25 hours of mixed use and 16 days on standby. One downside noted by ZDNet was the positioning of the charging port which they found to be in a bit awkward position. They also noted that the battery itself takes a long time to charge.

In addition to hardware upgrades the Z30 also offers new software, most notably the BlackBerry Priority Hub. According to BlackBerry, Priority Hub will learn over time what messages are important to you and highlight them for quick access. Forbes notes that this feature could “prove useful to the busy Z30 user.” Aside from the BlackBerry’s homegrown software, the Z30 still suffers from a lack of apps available to users such as Netflix and Instagram.

Most reviewers agree this is a solid phone that offers more than its predecessor, the Blackberry Z10. Crackberry notes that “it’s a perfectly capable, strong device so long as you don’t care about missing a few token apps.” Engadget is a bit more reserved with their recommendation noting that it “isn't a bad device by any means, just one that falls short of what we expect from a 2013-2014 flagship.”

The Good: Excellent battery life, ergonomic design, excellent display viewing angles.

The Bad: Very few native apps, low screen brightness, difficult to use one-handed.


Operating system
BlackBerry
Processor
1.7 GHz
Screen Size
5"
Camera
8+ MP


What the Critics Are Saying...


Notebookcheck

The Canadian manufacturer does not give up, and consistently tries to establish itself on the smartphone market. That is certainly not easy considering the strong competition and their short product cycles. The Z30 has grown by 0.8 inches, its processor has been upgraded to 1.7 GHz, and the working...

- Daniel Schuster, Notebookcheck
What Mobile

Perhaps if BlackBerry had focused its efforts on making a phone like this five years ago, we would be looking at a very different picture now.

- Callum Tennent, What Mobile
Digital Versus

The Z30 is definitely a step up from the Z10, but it isn't quite enough to conquer the market. It does everything it's supposed to and has enough battery life to please Berry lovers as well as a few newbies along the way.

- Romain Thuret, Digital Versus
Digital Trends

Long battery life and solid OS improvements are much appreciated. But the as the company’s troubles continue worsen, it’s hard to recommend.

- Matt Safford, Digital Trends
NDTV

When the BlackBerry Z10 came out, late as it was in the smartphone race, we were willing to excuse some of its shortcomings, given that BlackBerry 10 was a brand new platform. We hoped BlackBerry would build upon a promising release with quick, timely updates that would fill in the missing gaps. Sad...

- Kunal Dua, NDTV


Prices (Where to Buy)





Resources


Manuals / User Guides Helpful Links Share / Embed

Maybe one of your friends will find this review helpful? Please help us spread the word.


Quick view

Screen Size
5"

The BlackBerry Z30's screen size is 5 inches with 720 x 1280 pixels resolution.

Processor
1.7 GHz

There is a Qualcomm MSM8960T Pro Dual core 1.7 GHz processor (CPU).

OS

The phone runs on the BlackBerry 10.2 (Update Available: 10.2.1) operating system (OS).

Camera
8+ MP

You can take photos with the phone's onboard 8+ megapixel camera.

There is also a secondary front facing camera with 2+ megapixels resolution.

Storage
16 GB

Internal memory is 16 GB. An external, MicroSD, MicroSDHC (up to 64 GB) expansion slot is available for increased storage capacity.

Battery
2800mAh

The phone is powered by a Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion), 2800 mAh battery. BlackBerry's performance ratings are 1080 minutes, 454 minutes Wi-Fi surfing.

BlackBerry Z30 Specs

Overview
Release date September 30, 2013
Regions available USA, Canada, United Kingdom
Mobile / Cellular Data
4G/LTE
Networks
GSM:
850/900/1800/1900 MHz
UMTS:
850/900/1900/2100 MHz
LTE:
2100/800/900/1800 /2600 MHz
Data:
GPRS, EDGE, HSUPA, HSPA+, LTE
SIM card size
Yes
Dual SIM No
Operating System BlackBerry 10.2 (Update Available: 10.2.1)

Compare BlackBerry Smartphones

Processor Qualcomm MSM8960T Pro Dual core 1.7 GHz
Internal Storage 16 GB
RAM 2 GB
ROM No
GPS Type A-GPS
Hearing Aid Compatible No
TTY/TDD No
Noise Cancellation Yes
SAR Head: 0.77 W/kg
Body: 1.01 W/kg
Languages English
Manufacturer Warranty 1 Year
Accessories Included AC Charger, Manual
Power & battery
Battery Type Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion)
Battery Capacity 2800 mAh
Removable Battery No
Wireless Charging No
Fast Charging No
Video Playback Time Up to: 720 minutes
Internet Use (Wi-Fi) Up to: 454 minutes
Internet Use (Celluar) Up to: 454 minutes
Talk Time Up to: 1080 minutes
Standby Time Up to: 16 days
Physical Characteristics
Design type Bar
Multi-Use Smart Phone / PDA Yes
Material Plastic
Colors Black
Dimensions [H x W x D] 14.1 x 7.2 x 0.9 cm (5.6 x 2.8 x 0.4 in)
Weight 170 grams
Water Resistant / Waterproof Unknown
Rugged design No
IP Rating No
Display / Screen
Type Color
Technology Super AMOLED
Colors 16.7 million
Resolution 720 x 1280 pixels
Pixel density 295 pixels
Size 5 inches
Secondary Display No
Sensors Ambient Light, Proximity, Motion / Accelerometer, Gyroscope, 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 No
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
Connectivity
USB Micro-USB 2.0
USB OTG Support No
Infrared No
Bluetooth 4.0
Bluetooth Profiles A2DP, HFP, HSP
Bluetooth Audio Codecs SBC, aptX
WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n
WiFi Encryption No
Mobile Hotspot Yes
WiMAX No
Memory Expansion Slot Yes
Expansion Slot Info MicroSD, MicroSDHC (up to 64 GB)
PC Synchronization Yes
TV Out HDMI
DLNA Support Yes
NFC Yes
Data Tethering Compatibility Yes
Java Applications No
Brew Applications No
ECML / Digital Wallet Yes
Camera
Main Camera
Aperture
Unknown
Resolution
8+ megapixels
Multi-camera
No
Zoom
5x digital
Flash
Yes (LED)
Additional Rear Camera Info
Auto focus, Geotagging, Image stabilization, Multi-shot, Night mode, Time shift mode, HDR, Scene mode
Video Recording Formats
3GP / 3GPP, 3G2 / 3GPP2, MPEG-4, WMV, ASF, AVI
Video Recording Parameters
Full HD (1920 x 1080 pixels)
Front Camera
Resolution
2+ megapixels
Zoom
3x digital
Additional Front Camera Info
Image stabilization
Video Recording Parameters
HD (1280 x 720 pixels)
Audio / Video
Audio Playback Yes
Audio Formats AAC, AMR, AMR-WB, MP3, MP4, M4A, OGG, WMA, WAV
Radio Yes (FM)
Video Playback Yes
Video Playback Formats 3GP / 3GPP, 3G2 / 3GPP2, ASF, AVI, 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 No
Speakerphone Yes
Apps
To-Do / Task List Yes
Calendar Yes
World Clock Yes
Alarm Yes
Stop Watch Yes
Timer Yes
Calculator Yes
Currency Converter No
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 (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube)
Included Software / Apps -
More
Additional comments Other Names (AKA): BlackBerry A10

Related Links Manual (PDF)
BlackBerry Z30 Reviews
Where to buy BlackBerry Z30
Suggest a correction