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BlackBerry Porsche Design P’9981

With a price tag of $2,000, the exclusive Porsche Design P’9981 Smartphone from BlackBerry is a Bold 9900 in an expensive new skin. It isnot a better BlackBerry than the 9900, but if you have the cash and want to stand out, it is definitely the BlackBerry for you.”

Design: A collaboration between Porsche Design and BlackBerry. You’ll either love the look or hate it. Tends to get a better reaction in real life than from photos. Feel: The unibody stainless steel frame gives the P’9981 some heft and a sturdy feel that makes it seem more like a luxury item than just another electronic device.
Performance: It’s a Bold 9900 through and through. The 1.2 GHz processor delivers snappy performance and the keyboard is great for messaging. Quality: As you would expect from a phone that costs $2,000, the quality of the hardware is top notch. RIM didn’t hold back on the use of rich materials.

BB Porsche P9981 BB Porsche P9981


BlackBerry Porsche Design P9981

It’s hard not to feel like “the man” walking around with the P’9981. Most people have never seen one in real life. Take it out in public and people notice it. Those who recognize it and know of the Porsche BlackBerry look at you in awe (or like you’re crazy to spend $2k on a phone). Those who don’t know of the P’9981 stop and ask what is as they’re seeing it for the first time. Owning the P’9981 turns you into a celebrity of sorts. Seriously, people will want to stop you and take photos of you and your phone. It’s a very different sort of smartphone ownership experience. When you buy a P’9981, you really feel like you’re joining an elite club.

BlackBerry Porsche Design P9981

As the price tag goes up so do the expectations. Unfortunately, there are a few frustrating flaws/oversights on the P’9981 that bug me. Uneven keyboard backlighting jumps out at you in the dark. Removing the microSD card is tricky as is replacing the battery door. The Call / Hang Up buttons have open edges, and I’ve almost accidentally ripped those buttons off the phone when pulling the phone out of my pocket more than once. Accessories are hard to find. Software updates/leaks lag the 9900, which is annoying at the moment as the P’9981 needs an upgrade to OS 7.1. And yes, like the Bold 9900, there’s no autofocus on the camera. :/

 BlackBerry Porsche Design P9981


You don’t look at review ratings on a phone like the P’9981. With a $2k price tag, this is a luxury item. It’s an emotional purchase. You’re buying it because you already like the BlackBerry experience and you want it in the most exclusive manner possible and don’t mind the expense that accompanies it. Comparisons to other BlackBerry phones or competitors on the market just don’t matter.

It doesn’t matter that the Bold 9900 is arguably a better BlackBerry for way less money. The 9900 isn’t exclusive. It doesn’t matter that you could buy a Bold 9900, iPhone 4S and Samsung Galaxy Nexus off contract for the cost of one P’9981. Everybody else has those phones. It doesn’t matter that the BlackBerry OS is showing its age and doesn’t have the apps of iOS or Android – if you’re buying a P’9981 you probably already own three iPads and a PlayBook or two already. If and when a BlackBerry 10 exclusive phone hits with a price tag of $2k, you already know you’re just going to buy that too.

The P’9981 isn’t perfect. For $2,000, it probably should be. If you’ve been seriously considering buying one, there’s no major reason I can give you not to go ahead with your purchase. You’re going to buy what you want to buy regardless of my opinion. However, there are some minor things to be aware of, which I highlight in this review, so you know what to expect when you pick up your shiny new P’9981 and are able to enjoy it to the max

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