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Meet the 5-inch, full-touch BlackBerry Leap


You’ve probably been reading about the BlackBerry Leap — previously codenamed the Rio — for several months, but BlackBerry finally made the 5-inch, full-touch handset official during an event at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona today.

Leap is the midrange but capable smartphone all the rumors have been promising, and it aims to deliver the latest BlackBerry 10 operating system to smartphone shoppers on a budget. When it goes on sale in Europe next month, it will cost just $275.

For that, users get a 5-inch 720p (1280×720) display with 294 pixels-per-inch, 16GB of internal storage, a microSD card slot, 4G LTE, and an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera. BlackBerry is also promising up to 25 hours of “heavy use” in between charges.

“The BlackBerry Leap is built for those rising stars who value productivity, communication, and take security seriously,” the Canadian company writes on its blog. “With its modern design, brilliant 5-inch HD display, and battery life that powers through 25 hours of heavy use, the BlackBerry Leap gives you the power to succeed.”

The Leap certainly looks like an attractive smartphone, sporting a clean, simplistic design with a large glass panel covers its entire front side — just like on the BlackBerry Z3. In fact, the Leap is pretty much a Z3 with slightly better specifications.

Leap will come with BlackBerry’s latest OS 10.3.1 operating system pre-installed, which includes the Amazon Appstore. It will make its debut in Europe in April before rolling out to other markets around the world later this year.

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Killian Bell

Killian Bell is a 20-something technology journalist based in a tiny town in England. He has an obsession with that little company in Cupertino...