BlackBerry L series, N series offer choice of touch or keys

For the first BlackBerry 10 phones, Research in Motion has ditched the keyboard in the new L series, but not the new N series.

Feast your eyes on the first phones to be powered by BlackBerry 10, the next generation of BlackBerry software. BlackBerry builder Research in Motion seems to have ditched the trademark keyboard for the first BB10 phone , but hedged its bets with a second phone that keeps the popular clicky keys.

N4BB has got its mitts on a leaked document purportedly revealing pictures and details of the screens on the two new phones. Previously rumoured to be bearing the codenames BlackBerry London and BlackBerry Nevada, the phones known here as the L series and N series.

The L series is the touchscreen model, shorn of BlackBerry's signature keyboard. The screen is 2.16 inches wide -- that's width, not the usual corner-to-corner measurement. For comparison, that's exactly the same width as the screen of the iPhone .

The screen has a resolution of 768x1,280 pixels, which is 356 pixels per inch -- and not only is it high definition, it's more than the 326ppi of the iPhone's much-vaunted retina display.

The N series has a physical keyboard beneath the display, so the screen is smaller with a resolution of 720x720 pixels. It may be smaller but it's every bit as crisp with 330ppi -- which is still sharper than the iPhone.

There's a lot riding on these 'ere phones: RIM is doing so badly it's reportedly poised to sell the BlackBerry business altogether. BlackBerry 10 has been delayed for a year, during which the PlayBook and BBM outage were high-profile disasters.

Can the L series and N series rescue RIM? Do these first glances bode well for the next generation of BlackBerry? Can they put RIM back in the game? Tell me your thoughts in the comments or on our Facebook page.

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About the author

Rich Trenholm is a senior editor at CNET where he covers everything from phones to bionic implants. Based in London since 2007, he has travelled the world seeking out the latest and best consumer technology for your enjoyment.

 

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