BlackBerry 10.1: What we want to see next

BlackBerry 10 has a lot to like, but there is, shall we say, room to grow. Three CNET writers share their wish list.

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BlackBerry (formerly RIM) may have just lifted the lid on its completely overhauled BlackBerry 10 OS for mobile devices, but CNET has been testing the heck out of the OS and Z10 smartphone for over a week now. There are elements that we love and elements that we, frankly, think the smartphone-maker could have done better.

So, three of us who have spent time with the Z10 and its OS put our heads together to offer up a few suggestions that we'd like to see in BlackBerry's inevitable first OS update. And yes, we have more suggestions for the platform's long-term development after that.

  • Smoother front-end animation when you open an app (currently takes you to the multitasking screen each and every time before opening)
  • More camera options: HDR mode, panorama mode, ISO, resolution options
  • Walking and transit directions in maps app; more granular maps data to show local businesses; satellite and 3D mode
  • Native podcast app that links into the music player
  • Long press the period on the virtual keyboard to get comma and exclamation point punctuation
  • Faster rotation speed from landscape to portrait mode
  • Improved battery life (this was mixed for three testers)
  • Better integration with Google's social services
  • More transparent, better surfaced toggle to switch from desktop to mobile mode and back (current toggle is in Settings > Developer Tools)

Things we really like about the OS now:

  • Overall graphical look and feel
  • Fade animation when swiping home screens
  • BlackBerry Hub
  • Photo editor with wide variety of tools and filters
  • BlackBerry Messenger
  • BlackBerry Balance (smaller subsection of beneficiaries)
  • Multitasking screen

Our friends in the U.K. get the first chance to buy a BlackBerry 10 device in the form of the Z10, followed by Canada and the UAE in February. The phones are expected to arrive in the U.S. and other countries around the world as late as March or April (a shame!), to wide U.S. carrier support.

CNET will have much, much more in-depth content coming up for the Z10 and BlackBerry Q10 in the coming weeks, so check back often! In the meantime, read CNET's full BlackBerry 10 OS review for all the details.

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