Friday Photo Fun: WTF is this thing?!

By Adam Zeis on 9 Sep 2011 12:43 pm EDT

BlackBerry 9980

Wow ... and wow again. Forums member robertyhn sent this into the CrackBerry tip line, and frankly we're not quite sure what to make of it. The site MaxPDA calls this futuristic device a BlackBerry 9980, but it looks to us that it's really just more of a rebuilt (or "reimagined") BlackBerry Bold 9900. At first glance it does look like it could be some type of concept BlackBerry, but as you dive into the photos you'll notice pretty much everything is spot on with the Bold 9900. There are some exceptions in the lock button, volume/mute buttons and memory card slot however, but all of these can easily be tweaked with little effort. All of the ports, camera, flash, proximity senor and other features are all in line with the 9900. It doesn't look to be an actual production device, and most certainly not a QNX device either. So ... take it for what you will, but we're thinking its just the work of a phone geek like us with a little lot of extra time on their hands. Keep reading for a boat load of images. Thanks roberyhn!

BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980




BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


BlackBerry 9980


Source: MAXPDA



lol that is the ugliest thing i've ever seen.


who are you telling that thing is so damn UGLY!!!!!!
it better have at least a 1.5 ghz processor


Well... It isn't THAT ugly... I kinda like it..


It looks good except for that "PROCEEDING" thing on the top and that HIDEOUS keyboard... that keyboard looks pretty damn ugly, and hard to type on. it's too square, the curved keyboard works much better, and looks better.


Just the earliest prototype of 9900 which was designed during 2009 but was finally discarded. Confirmed!


Now that I saw that it didn't have two sim card slots, it's a real blackberry. But why do away with the trackpad, with a D-Pad? I don't get it.


It may be ugly, but it's "different". Someone actually spent some time to design that thing. I don't think it's as appealing as the actual 9900, but I definitely have to give credit to the designer. I think it's cool as hell that it was done.


Looks like a calculator? haha


You People are on crack !

That looks like a quality device designed by porsche or bang and olufsen.

Obviously bb users are are not cutting edge people by the comments here, now I understand why you keep using old technology.

Still holding on to your Sony vega tv?


you obviously haven't seen my buddy's wife.


If that is the next generation Bold then Rim truly is heading downhill... that thing is hideous futuristic looking but a complete downhill turn from the 9900


I love it, when does it come out last decade. lol


Holy moly! I would never ever buy a BlackBerry if it looks like that!


this was a lot of scrolling to post a comment


Yes, what a pain it would be to view and/or read the content before posting a comment...


ha! tricks on you debbie downer cuz i did before i posted the comment so gtfo


If rim is a company the prides itself on professionalism why is that they're always leaks of their device's software' and all around products where as other companies keep a firm grip on their products which are a whole lot less professional.........


Yeah like that iPhone5 right?


To keep current users interested and have something to look forward to.


Fire up the "About Device Versions" screen and that should tell the tale...


looks like a casio calculator !!!!


'Made in China' sticker is missing


but the 'MADE IN CANADA' is not....


i'm already in love with this one :)


call me loco but i want one. that would be a really out of this world case for the new generation BB


I want one. But only to say I have one, I don't think I could bring myself to use if for more than a day (for the lulz)


That keyboard looks like... Wow... I may hate virtual keyboards but I think I'd rather a virtual keyboard over that monstrosity


Is the ugliest thing ever! Hope it is just a phone geek having fun.


The carrier is China Mobile. Probably just a Chinese rip off of a real BlackBerry!!


Don't be so sure it is just a "concept" or a fake...remember when the "Storm 3" photo leaked? It turned out to be one of the full touch OS 7 gen devices (9850 &9860)...well, it looks like a finished product to me and I've seen on that one or more devices have been detected running OS 7.1, you can check for yourselves at:

This device could be running that OS and the rumored single core processor they've been talking about when they refer to the "Colt". One thing is for sure. THIS PHONE IS NOT THE COLT!!!


Pretty much the only sane comment here...


If this is where blackberry is going im gonna have to stock up on 9930's!! That thing is ugly, looks like it came out of a 25¢ machine in china!


If this is a leaked BB then it is the fugliest leak ever, but also kinda cool at the same time! Someone obviously spent time on this.........whatever you call it!
NO ONE has a phone that looks like that and sometimes different is good or it could be a straight up killer! Only time will tell if this is real or somebodies well spent time on a phone that will never see the light of production's day!

I think the name for this phone should be the BB Medusa----you know why!!!
It just might defeat the BB Kraken!


Battery slot, sim card slot, battery itself, NFC antenna... No doubt it's a 9900...

And, yes... It's butt ugly! :)


I sorta agree with you guys. at 1st. Seriously.

But on second looks, it does look like a Bold 9900 remodeled.

It has the NFC components, 9900 screen(if it is a touch screen, idk), 9900 buttons layout style, 9900 camera&flash positions.

So looks-like-a 9900 to me. Except for the hideous trackpad(does it work like ours?)

And is the UI from a random OS i wonder....

Actually, if it is such a custom-made BlackBerry body by RIM, I wouldn't mind trying it out tho. HAHAHA. *don't hammer me people*


The internals are not the internals on a 9900. Different footprint, much less refined.

I suspect these are pictures of an initial bold 9900 Prototype that's found its way into somebodies hands.


This device shouldn't see the light of day! I remember it was posted a while back but it was assumed to be a fake, hope it stays that way though it seems otherwise!


If this style keyboard holds true, I guess the 9900 will be the way to go, not looking forward to the above shown keyboard. Reminds me of the Nokia X2


guys dont get caught up in the trap. Its ugly for a reason. To cause negative comments about a company who cant afford them right now. Corporations doit all the time. Like some of the people on these forums. We can all agree this thing is not ugly but FUGLY. Im sure this is not rim. They are too busy working on my android app player. :) also look at the dates it shows they dont make sense. military on thursday the 8 and regular time on friday the 5th a date that doesnt exist. so try this. lets see how many weird things you can find :)


Now that you mention it, I looked at the photos and there is some fishyness going on here. I'm going to play a little game now called "spot the fake." It may just be a 9000 with someones spare time on it. Skilled fabricator that he/she may be, it still might be a hoax. Well, time to find Waldo!


OMG !! This is the most ugly blackberry i've ever seen ! What the hell !


MicroSD card goes in diferent than 9900 though.


The only way I could see this being a good idea would be if it were made for some futuristic movie, but they would obviously change the UI in post-production, to make it look more futuristic. It would kind of be funny if RIM had a part in this, because it would show people that even in 2050 or whenever the futuristic movie is set, BlackBerry would STILL be around with the full keyboard!


Isn't the leaker afraid of being id'ed from the photos? You can see the buildings around and certainly if someone lives in the area, he can be identified.... But that aside, that is an awfully ugly phone!


Would all the "haters" of this design feel that way if it turned out this was a "ruggedized" Mil-Spec type of build? Water Resistant, drop proof, etc.? I for one would LOVE to have a ruggedized BB that did not require me to buy add on cases, otter boxes, etc. which add weight and thickness.


Looks like a Hybrid - something someone made themselves and took the screen and board out of a 9900....... scary looking thing!


HAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA........ WTF! wow, NUFF SAID! Anyways everyone is saying how ugly or FUGLY it is, but i guarantee if this monstrosity was ever released people would flock to it and praise it like its the most amazing thing ever! Remember the torch? Everyone was saying how ugly it was, blah blah and look... now its still there being purchased by many (who think its hot), especially the os7 9810 that looks as ugly as this with its messed up cheap looking battery door! Oh and remember the hate the style got before it was released? Yeah ok, well i've seen numerous people with it as well! So yeah what now to the ones hating! I just hope it never gets released, cause just like this, after the release of the torch and style i still think they are Ugly as hell!

And one more thing: Why the hell does it say PROCEEDING at the top? lmfao Is that the name of it? the Blackberry PROCEEDING to get hate for this piece of crap? lol PROCEEDING to FAIL with this thing


looks like someone doesn't know the meaning of "NUFF SAID."


Made in Canada? What the hell?


Yeah...aint that FUNNY...a Canadian Company that makes Technology...NOT made in China...on a Chinese carrier!!!...very Nokia looking...4 way nav-pad????????


Some people suggest this could be an spin-off of 9900 for Porsche (yes, the auto maker). It's a good speculation because the typeface of "PROCEEDING" is very same to "PORSCHE DESIGN", which also contains all letters in the former word!!! [source:]


All the letters apart from S and H you mean.


I think they meant that all the letters from proceeding were in porsche design and not that it was meant to be an anagram.


While not likely to be a spin-off, it is conceivable they got together to do some kind of cross-branding with a custom-designed 9900 in a similar way to other companies having got together with laptop companies.
It could be an interesting approach in some ways if this is what has happened, it goes quite a long way beyond the usual approach of colour variants.


While not likely to be a spin-off, it is conceivable they got together to do some kind of cross-branding with a custom-designed 9900 in a similar way to other companies having got together with laptop companies.

It could be an interesting approach in some ways if this is what has happened, it goes quite a long way beyond the usual approach of colour variants.


is this the new superphone?


i could agree on PORSHE DESIGN... it seems like them... sharp angles and silver plastic... looks cheap..


Isn't it possible that, its just a normal 9900 with an aftermarket shell on it?

Yvon Hawke

That thing's got a clean, sharp, provacative and eye-catching appeal. Pure geometric beauty. GIMME!

I suspect we have something that is homemade by someone with extreme ability with metals.....which isn't that hard to do if you have the right tools. We should be applauding that they were able to pull that off with it looking as finished as it is.

I for one dig the heck out of the battery door....what that does for me is show me that an extended battery with a unique door is there's that.

Imagine the current 99xx series a little thicker, with a leather-backed door (honestly, you are all going to use NFC, right? Moreso than the extended battery....ahem....) and a 2,000mAh battery...sign me the eff up right now!


Looks like the Motorola Q but with Blackberry branding.


WTF is up with "Proceeding"? Looks like its a fake Bold 9900, probably will be sold in China. Who knows? That is most definitely not a concept or test device. It's definitely Chinese, OR like the article suggest, a phone geek with A LOT of free time on their hands. Bold 9900 still wins in terms of sexy looks and all. Whoever said that was a lot of scrolling just to post was right haha.

Truthful Noble

When I first saw it on blurry cam I hated it. It was simply atrocious. However the more i look at "Proceeding" the more and more I find it attractive. It has a futuristice look to it something like how apple change the look of the iPhone4. Perhaps this is the kind of shot in the arm risk that RIM needs to take since producing the smae ol same ol is not drawing too many outside of the RIMpire. Its not gonna be for everyone on first take but the RIMpire will come around. Hey Kevin can you get your hands on this please????????


"I'd buy that for a dollar". It looks like it could have been a prop for that movie...


i want to see the shift eace screen


My take, somebody recreated the 9900 to there own liking. I'd call it a HumV army tank. Kinda cool I think.


This phone is actually very cool. Really like the form of the keyboard. The only thing I would change is fitting the call and end key row closer together so there is not such a large gap. It may take awhile to grow on existing BlackBerry users but would probably catch on pretty quick with first timers.


Redefining fugly... This looks like it belonged to the Sony Ericsson P900 series...


It's pretty. Don't hate me. I like it.
Except the keyboard.


it could have looked awesome in the 90's


That phone actually looks amazing. I want one!

And yes, I'm completely serious.


It's what you'd get if the designers of the Pontiac Aztec designed a smartphone.


I'm impressed somebody made this out of 9900! Like it or not, its different than the usual color change that people do :D This is giving me all kinds of interesting ideas...:D


I actually kinda like it. Theres something about it thats cool. Maybe because its not completely black.


That is the fugliest thing I have ever seen.


I like it. It has that nostalgic look to it. I like the keys all the way to the edge also.


Hey wow, I think it looks great. As long as the material is sustantial and heavy vs plastic, it's got some finesse.


I'm not gonnat lie.... it's kinda cool


Reminds me of the Sony Ericsson Aspen, but thinner...


Oops, double posted...sorry


Looks like a bare bone 9900 with the ugliest keyboard imaginable!


Seems to me like a prototype. Ppl asked for a change and I have a feeling Rim is reading the comments right now. Someone is looking for new ideas for the next BOLD.

I won't say that I don't like it but the keyboard is not authentic. How can you type on this thing with all the stripes and curves.

anyways we'll see in a year if this was a fake or not. I remember when the first BB Storm came out and Rim ackoledge that they were already working on the Storm 3. So this may not be the 9980 but it could be the 19900 or something...

To be continued.


I don't see why it couldn't be a base 9900 test unit or QNX Bold style test unit. Just use cheap parts to put something together for OS test purposes. It wouldn't have to look good or even authentic.


Any Qnx bold test unit would tend to be in its own casing if they needed accurate rf performance and if not then it would make vastly more sense to use a normal 9900 casing since that would help to disguise it from casual glances and they would also have a lot more of those components and a hardware maker would not generally like to have to buy in parts that would be useless for anything but a small prototype batch.


I think it is a bold 9900 interiors in the body of a Vertu or Porsche design or Tag Heur or lamborghini..


What are you lot on about? Did you read the intro to this blog before posting?

I'm sitting here looking at these photos and comparing them to my 9900 and to me it looks just like someone has modified a 9900 for some fun.

Clearly there is NO WAY BlackBerry would release this phone into the market with a keyboard like that after they spent so many resources perfecting the 9900 keyboard.

Too many people round here are actually smoking the Crack in CrackBerrry!

Blessed Berries

Like it or not, it looks really cool!

Blessed Berries

Don't be afraid to tell the truth. Others say it is ugly doesnot mean it is ugly.



The new QNX phone from Blackberry!


-New 100X sharper edges can shred paper--Great for business!
-Futuristic design draws attention (RIM watched too much back to the future)
-Boxy design allows for flat table-top use!
-Exclusive EDGE data connection for SUPER long battery life
-Customers can make an easy transition from an original Gameboy
-Almost invisible Blackberry logo to avoid shame in front of Android and iPhone users

Official RIM statement:
"We fired all the hardware design staff so we could save money."
This design was conceived by Mike Lazaridis after he slipped and hit his head on his bathroom sink while standing on the toilet to hang a clock. (Again, watching too much back to the future)


The keyboard and some things more make me think it's FAKE AS HELL!


I'm liking that design!!


this thing looks cool


It looks like an old Casio calculator from the 90s.


wetf it is..its UGLY! wouldn't pay $0.10 for something like that ick


I like it because it looks big with some adjustments I would definitely get it. Someone find the specs and find out if i can get it flat black.


I think its an old pretest-device of the Bold.


Confirmed: It's not some new model of blackberry. it's just the first prototype of 9900 when it was designed during 9900. but this design was discarded finally. so what you see 9900 now is the combination of 9000 and 9700.


This device does exsit, I took the photos & sent it out, now here is the video can explain every rumors,it is an amazing BlackBerry device that common people could never is the Model:BlackBerry Bold R47(9980)


i like it! awesome!

Industrial design


i doubt thats the next blackberry! its a phone someone in china made for them selves and now they're just putting it out on the internet saying its the next one!


Love looks of the keypad. Wonder how it works.


I definetly prefer the 9900 over this.


My Bold 9930 just laughed at that this thing. You can keep it even if its twice as powerful.


He or she throws that pos out the window smashed up on the ground ...that's better:)


I really don't know what to say TBH, but it don't look good. Wether its a good phone or not or if its real let's wait and see


I duno if I would buy it or not I think I'd be embarrased on the street with it


this does looks like the samsung galaxy Pro B7510.


Man not bad, at first I was like man that's ugly. It grew on me while looking at it.