While some folks are still waiting for their Priv to arrive, I've had the fortunate pleasure of using the device for a while now and have been loving it, as one might have concluded from my review. For me, the transition to the Priv was pretty easy and using the Android experience that BlackBerry has built has been fantastic but one of the biggest questions that come up from folks considering a move into a Priv has been 'Is there anything you miss from BlackBerry 10?' and truth be told there is. In some cases, it's just a matter of finding a replacement but in others, there simply is no replacement. Let's take a look at five things I miss.
- Speed - Losing the ability to fly through the OS quickly was something I was fully aware I was going lose going into the Priv. The ability to hop in and out of apps, switch windows, complete tasks, glance at the pertinent info and just get right down to business is intense on BlackBerry 10, and I've not yet been able to reach the same level on the Priv. I'm not saying it's impossible on the Priv or Android in general; I'm just saying it that experience and speed were built into BlackBerry 10. On Priv, it's going to take a bit more effort to get things set up the right way and customize the experience to get to the same point. BlackBerry had the pleasure of being able to create BlackBerry 10 from the ground up and build in those experiences. On Priv, they're playing in someone else's sandbox and those experiences have to be recreated.
- BlackBerry Blend - I'm sure there's an old saying along the lines of 'you never really miss someone till they're gone' or something like that but in this case, it's not a person. It's an app and for a while there I was totally missing BlackBerry Blend. While using BlackBerry 10, I always had BlackBerry Blend running, and it made answering my BBM's from my desktop so incredibly easy. Granted, that's not likely the best use case for everyone but dammit, that's how I used it, and I no longer have it. Seriously, this caused a slight bit of panic for me as the lack of Blend disrupted my workflow and daily operations. However, as I mentioned in the opening, there are replacements and in the case of BlackBerry Blend and where I mostly only use BBM through Blend, I quickly learned thanks to my friend Alex Bass that Pushbullet when installed on the Priv and Desktop, will not only allow you to receive BBM notifications on your desktop but also reply directly to them. It does way more as well, but I'm saving that for a help and how-to guide. Stay tuned!
- File Manager - As anyone using BlackBerry 10 will tell you, myself included, the file manager included with BlackBerry 10 is amazing and tightly integrated with the OS. You can manage Dropbox, Box, device storage, media card storage, attached devices through USB and even files through remote access on Windows and Mac. It's entirely arguable that BlackBerry HAD to build those things into the OS because no one else was working with them, but that's neither here nor there. Point is, and as silly as it might sound to some reading this, it's a bad-ass addition to the OS that's simply not there on the Priv. As I've noted before if you listen to the BerryFlow Podcast, it's not a huge deal that it's not there as you have a bevy of file manager apps to choose from on Google Play now, but it was just so nice having it all built in and I miss it. It really was a struggle to find a file manager I like and had all the features the BlackBerry 10 file manager had built in. Yes, we'll be doing a nice round up of file managers for you folks who might also be in the same spot. I got you!
- Notifications - While this is just my opinion and you're free to argue with me if you want, there's simply no nice way to say it. Notifications on Android still really suck and unfortunately, at this point, there was very little BlackBerry could do to Android to improve upon them as a whole. Sure, BlackBerry did the best they could with contacts and their own apps but it goes back to playing in Google's sandbox and at the core level BlackBerry had to stick to the rules and as such, notifications on the Priv are simply not as robust as what they are on a BlackBerry 10 device. It's something that can be played around with and adjusted through apps here and there but again, BlackBerry 10 had it built in right out of the box. For some moving to the Priv, this is going to be an adjustment.
- Hub Pinch - As trivial as it might sound to some, this was a pretty huge feature for me in my daily use. I had it set so that when I pinched in the Hub, it would just show me all my unread emails and it was awesome. It's not as though the option to view unread emails is gone in the Hub on Priv, BUT the pinch feature is gone making it a little bit of a slower process and it leaves me feeling slightly less productive. I now have to reach up and tap on the drop down menu to switch to unread emails OR I have to create a custom view, which by the way, is an awesome feature to have and I've been using that in place of Hub pinch for unread, but that's not the point. Point is I was accustomed to doing it one way and that way is no longer available but instead has been replaced by another way. It's great to have the option, but it's still a replacement option.
So there they are. Five things I miss from BlackBerry 10 and again, you're not likely to agree with them all and that's fine by me but if you've moved into a Priv if your own, then let me know in the comments what you miss from BlackBerry 10. Ultimately, there's nothing here that's a deal breaker I don't think, but others may feel differently.