For years now, the BlackBerry OS has occupied something of a special state, almost feeling as if it were thrown down into a pit and locked into a bar of carbonite, preserved in stasis for future generations to see. Want to show your kids what using a smartphone was like in 2006? You just needed to find a Bold on display at the local electronics store and let your little ones gaze wide-eyed at a sea of menus and tiny buttons.
BB7, then, was a disappointment for many, feeling like a bare-minimum update to those versions that came before rather than the complete QNX-based retooling we'd all been waiting for. The PlayBook showed us what was possible with a clean-sheet approach to a BlackBerry OS, and we wanted that on a phone. Now, two years after the release of that tablet, here we have it. It's BlackBerry 10. It's a wholly new experience, very different even than the PlayBook, and in general it's quite good. But is it good enough to thrive in a world dominated by iOS and Android? Let's find out.