A must-watch enthusiastic review of the BlackBerry Z30!

By Kevin Michaluk on 1 Apr 2014 01:51 pm EDT

Back in February, Dan Nessel from DadDoes.com accepted the challenge to put down his iPhone 5 and pick up the BlackBerry Z30 for 7 days.

Unsurprisingly to BlackBerry fans, Dan walked away from the test really appreciating the BlackBerry Z30 and the timesaving features offered up by BlackBerry 10.

Now Dan is back with another look at the Z30, this time following the big upgrade to OS 10.2.1, which introduced even more features for Dan to play with, not the least of which is the ability to run Android apps.

It's an enthusiastic review, and one well worth watching and reading. So check it out!

Reader comments

A must-watch enthusiastic review of the BlackBerry Z30!


Question for "Team CB"..... How does this guy beat all of you "experts" to showing Netflix on a BB10 phone?

I have been asking forever. This is the best "differentiating review" of BB10 features that I have ever seen... and I have seen a lot of them....

This guy should be hired by BlackBerry IMMEDIATELY... he understands how to "highlight" the differences....

Should be "required viewing" for the entire CB staff....

The CrackBerry showed Netflix running via sideloading a long time ago. 10.2.1 just allowed direct downloading over the phone but, the actual running of Netflix on your device hasn't changed. That's probably why you haven't seen a more recent video showing this.

Posted via CB10

Oh... my "bad" Blaize running an antiquated version on a February 2013 video... This guy, actually, showed the Netflix Icon on his phone and showed it work....

Point is... you have to "spoon feed the nonbelievers" and this DanDadDoes video was the best I have seen to date....

Chen should have been showing this on interviews at MWC....

Why does BlackBerry struggle so mightily to get out the "good news"????


Because BlackBerry sucks at marketing!!! Always has and looks like always will!!!!

 Posted via CB10 on my  Z30

BlackBerry "sucks" at marketing and, worse yet, they always think that they have more time than they do to get something done.

And deadlines are optional.

CB10 from the Z30

They do suck at Marketing IMHO. Our IT dept just got 40 Z30's and I got one in my hands for the first time. How they are not selling these by the Boat load is beyond me!!!!! Talk about a Flagship phone, great build great OS etc etc.... This is from a former iPhone 5 and current Nexus 5 owner. One could debate all day what is the best smartphone on the market, but you could not exclude the Z30 from that debate...... I read somewhere on this site that OS7 is outselling BB10, HTF did that happen?

Posted via the Android CrackBerry App!

Welcome to the "Black Side", skier. Be sure to tell your other friends with iToys what they are missing.

CB10 from the Z30

And are you surprise? this is a blackberry news related website and we should all know by now that anything blackberry is always late or don't pay attention to detail

What was funny, at the end of the video, the guy stated that Blackberry is now equal to Apple and Samsung phone. What a goof

 Posted by the Crackberry Pirate 

Exactly. I thought he was going to say how BlackBerry blows away the competition.

Posted via CB10

This guy is preaching to iSheep... change takes time and outlandish comments earn disrespect.

Posted via CB10

CB hardly ever does videos anymore. Just blogs or a post. I wondered the same thing. You guys need to step your game back up

BlackBerry 4Life

I mentioned goof, because, unless if anyone else can or is able to point out, can any of the Apple or Android phones do the same thing as the X30?

Then if not, then the Z30 blows these other devices away.

Is Crackberry able to answer this one?

 Posted by the Crackberry Pirate 

And the big Question is, is the guy in the video going to replace his Apple phone with a Z30? Didn't quite hear him saying it.

It was like hearing someone having foreplay, but not quite going all the way.

 Posted by the Crackberry Pirate 

He said in the forum that he was still carrying two phones, Z30 + iPhone

Posted via CB10 with Z30 on

I really enjoyed the video. BlackBerry really needs to find a creative way to have people watch something like this. Perhaps even breaking it up into segments that are played over the course of an evening. The toughest part is getting everything said in a reasonable amount of time to be cost effective. Maybe for the wire cutters they could work with a streaming service where it could be played. This also needs to work its way into the hands of IT departments and decision makers across the globe. Mr. Chen, I challenge thee....not sure how to get him to notice this though - CrackBerrry can you help?

Posted via CB10

Very cool loved his last review too can't wait to see this one.

Posted via CB10 on my blazing fast Z30 on

I received my Z30 on Saturday and didn't even know it could do all this.

BlackBerry knows how to make some cool stuff.

The amazing phone that no consumers outside of Crackberry know exists :/

Posted via CB10

Nonsense... open your mind. If I told you of some amazing feature of the phone you had not known about, would you disregard it simply because it's BlackBerry? That's ridiculous! You cheat yourself of life!

Posted via CB10

I think you misunderstood..
I think he was saying that unless you were a user of another platform, converting to BlackBerry, it won't carry much weight.

Ya, I get it. Nonsense. It insinuates that facts aren't facts unless presented by someone who previously used a different system. Again, nonsense.

Posted via CB10

You are free to consider it nonsense, but there are two long-established, widely-recognized proverbs which show that everyone else in the world disagrees:
1. The Boy Who Cried Wolf.
2. Only Nixon could go to China.

Good honest review. He actually takes the time to explain all the little things other sites don't even know about the Z30 or BB10 in general.

No doubt in my mind he loves it. How can you not?

Posted using the best phone ever, the Z30!

A review style we'd love BlackBerry to copycat ...
The kind you trust just by the tone and body language of presenter.
Simple. Real. Efficient. No blinking, no blah.
Bravo Dad ! (will say it again and again !)

Dad is honestly enthralled by the device and it's nice to see. I appreciate the work the CrackBerry staff puts into their reviews but lately some of the passion has slipped.

I came from an IPhone 5s, and the BlackBerry Z30 is the best phone I have ever used.

I can't put it down

Love it!

Posted via CB10

I came from the Z10 and didn't think I could get any worse for being on a cell. WRONG. Can't put the darn thing down. Constantly finding new things. Like a new phone every day.
Gotta get me a cable for hooking up a thumb drive. I read I could do that but totally forgot till now. Have 2 cables that I could use together but that one small cable is perfect.

Don Diego endorses the Zed.

I reposted the Dad Does link on my Facebook page, as it is really awesome, but I think my friends and colleagues are starting to the out my BlackBerry "ranting and raving".

I wish this video was mandatory viewing before someone buys their next device. An informed decision is a good decision, but sadly I think too many people are misinformed.

Posted via CB10 via Z30STA100-5/

Haha I was thinking posting it too but they never check any of my BlackBerry links but any other crap, they are all over it!!!

Posted via CB10

Kevin, this is your chance to show the boys at BGR how to do technology reviews properly. A bit of playful shaming is in order, don't you think? Go ahead and post a link to this review on BGR as CrackBerry Kevin, and see what happens.

Kevin prefers to kowtow to BGR and their balding leader... one of the great "BlackBerry Bashers" of all time who will go nameless here...

Yeah, I made sure to re-post this review earlier today on FB for all my BlackBerry H8ter friends out there to think twice about!

Posted via CB10

Great review, and straight to the point...now if only blackberry would actually fire their entire marketing department and hire some of these guys on youtube like ItsmeJC, they might reach the people who'll buy blackberry devices, if only they knew what the devices offered. Oh well....

Posted via CB10

do yo have any idea how many guys like this you could put on the pay roll for what you paid Frank Boulben?

Difficult to comprehend...

What a great review, and I learned a few things that I didn't know about my Z30. The best part: I told Dan about using the BBM Groups feature for his family (like I do). I think he likes it as much as I do; it truly sets BlackBerry apart from the others, but it's never advertised.

Hands Down.. I never knew BB 10 has so much potential until I saw this video. I used Z10 for a month and I went back to my iPhone 5 however I am tempted to jump back to Z10!

BlackBerry has so much potential.. it's just that they do no market about their "magical" features! Sad but true

Just an FYI though, the z10 does NOT have USB OTG, miracast, and fm tuner. I know it sucks that's why I've been itching to upgrade my z10 to z30 but still can't afford it.

Posted via CB10

No but the Z10 still has that HDMI port and the bluetooth keyboard/mouse work great with it.

In addtion I bought a bluetooth speaker and now I have fantastic music.... Oh yeah it does have DLNA so over a WiFi network you can play music to your stereo.. Probably stream a movie to your TV but I haven't set that up to try it.

So where is this Z30 then?

The best BlackBerry device ever and where is it?

In Hiding.

This is the number one reason why BlackBerry is in the situation it's in.

No Marketing!!!

No Leadership!!!

No Vision!!!!!

There's still plenty of work to be done but if BlackBerry build more devices like this BlackBerry has a fighting chance.

Posted via CB10

Not sure how the Z30 can be "sold out" on shop BlackBerry.com already - they just announced its availability.

CB10 from the Z30

Just to give an example as to why BlackBerry 10 sales suck. I talked my buddy into getting the Z10 and said call me when you get it I'll go over phone with you. This past Saturday he gets one from Rogers, they tell him it has latest software and that they copied all his info from last phone. He is very non tech savvy. It still had software 10.0 on it, they only copied his email addresses over no phone book or other stuff. Sales staff just don't care. It was same software from Feb 13. He was blown away by the difference.

Posted via CB10

Brick and mortar carrier staff are generally poorly trained, especially at non-corporate franchise locations. My experience as an administrator of BBs at a previous job was that 100% of them would be clueless about BB, and every single one of our users' phones would initially be set up incorrectly. Granted, that was regarding the proper provisioning with BES services -- all store employees, to a one, insisted that the phone didn't need BES services to get email, so they left it off the order.

Z30 gaining momentum! I was looking to add a line and order a Z30 for my wife to complement my Q10 and Verizon has them on back order. Its exciting for BlackBerry.

Posted via CB10

Great review! Does crackberry has a set up video on how to use share a file (file manager) with a Mac with a password. Also how to use maracast video would be good.

Posted via CB10

USB OTG cable on the go. Wow very useful. I have learn something today. Z30 is the best, am hooked. Good video also.

Great review for the Z30, just make me itch more to switch from my T-Mobile Z10! Unfortunately T-Mobile won't be offering Z30! Why I don't know! but I will be purchasing an unlocked Z30! Soon!

Posted via CB10

What's great about this review is that it not only covers features that other reviews never covered, but it shows how those features can be used in real-life situations that can realistically happen.

It should be mentioned that if you have a smart TV (e.g. one that supports WiFi Direct, which Samsung calls AllShare), then you don't need a Miracast dongle. Instead, you simply turn on WiFi Direct on your TV and connect your Z30 to the TV as you would connect your Z30 to a WiFi network. I've done it with my Z10 and was able to play videos & music, look at photos and use apps -- though, I never tried answering a phone call during that time.

Finally, I'm pretty sure you can connect your external camera directly to your Z30's USB port using the OTG cable. So you shouldn't have to take the SD card out and connect it to a USB card reader. Perhaps a Z30 owner reading this can verify this -- I own a Z10.

Once they use it they will come! That's all it takes- try the F-ing device and then make a judgment call. Stop following the media and their BB-hating vybz...

Excellent unbiased review of the Z30. Seriously, Blackberry has the wrong people in the marketing department. Fire their asses and hire guys like this to do their marketing and actually show off the features that will win people over.

Great review, but isn't he basically preaching to the already converted? How many cryPhone/ Fandroid users are actually going to see this AND change their phone as a result?

via Z10

Wow! This is the kind of publicity BlackBerry needs. Plzz BlackBerry start telling about features of BlackBerry 10. Some people don't even know the names of devices leave aside the features. People need to know what all they can do with BlackBerry. Then only they will buy.

I hope John Chen is seeing that they don't have to rely strictly on the new keyboard devices. The Z30 is an awesome device if they would put some marketing behind it NOW!

she missed the whole "10.2.1 thing" so she could bash on not being able to use Android apps... for "Tech Review Experts" these people, rarely, know what they are talking about... nor do they do their homework before a "review"...

If you read the related article that sounds a bit less positive, she complains that going from different app store like amazon to get netflix is already too much for the spoiled apple user she is used to a unique store. It's anyway true that the app gap is not fully covered with android apps as they don't always work or only partially work.
To me what matters is that she introduces herself as a BlackBerry basher, and yet starts her presentation with a vibrant "this is a fantastic phone, there are things that it does way better than my iphone", "battery", "keyboard is a game changer". She says that regarding communication (besides facetime...) it is better than the iPhone and logically concludes that (I'm rephrasing) she will go further with it and use the BlackBerry for work and the iphone for toy...
You can hardly have a better review than this, because you have a half convert US iphone user, acknowledging that BlackBerry better serves what it targets than the iPhone would.
It also shows that iOS users haven't yet realized how stagnant iOS has been compared to the other OSes. iPhone 6 would need a serious software upgrade if no opening but it looks like iOS is following this path http://www.stokely.com/lighter.side/version.numbers.html

In the video, she made no mention, whatsoever, about 10.2.1 and Android apps....these piece of feces "experts" don't do any prep for these reviews....they just play with the phone for a few minutes and tell you why it's not like iToy....

Founding Member "Club Z30"..."the most exclusive club in mobile"

I had yet to look up what Miracast is so now I know and I'm off to get a Push2TV asap. Love the mobile computing this is bringing. So happy I watched this video, twice!

Posted via CB10

The average person wouldn't have a clue about these features. Where is BlackBerry marketing? Why isn't this phone available through all carriers in the US? This is a great review, thanks. Wish the masses would get a chance to look at this video.

Hey Guys - Wow, if I didn't have my kids to tell me how clueless I am, I would run the risk of getting a big ego with all your positive comments :) Seriously, thanks for the kind words. As I said in a forum post, the majority of that video came from features that CrackBerry users told me about after my first video - so nice job by all of you.

I could go on and on about marketing and the missteps by BlackBerry...but I think I already did that in a forum post. However, let me give some credit where credit is due... It was PR folks representing BB that contacted me and asked if I wanted to do the 7 Day Challenge. I explained I was a big Apple fan and would do the challenge, but would give my honest feedback. They didn't blink at this and said have at it. On some other projects I have worked on, it is clear that they expect a good review and basically prescreen you to make sure you will love the product before you touch it.

So credit to the marketing at BB on this one. They had me do the Z30 challenge even though they knew I was an Apple fan and they also realized I knew very little about BB. It does go to what everyone is saying, if you spend some time with the Z30 you have a great experience, but the marketing challenge is, how do you convince more people to spend time with the Z30?

BlackBerry has a number of customized minivans that have various panels on the side that open and have monitors and marketing posters etc. and I've suggested they have these vehicles at events etc. and actually PAY people to use the device for 10 minutes and then pass a test and they get 5 bucks: I don't think you do need to have 7 days with a BB10 device to appreciate some of what it has to offer, but right now, what BlackBerry marketing / PR is fighting is the "I'm not going to even bother" issue, so, if you can get people to bother, they're going to walk away with a positive impression, even if they don't actually buy a device... having a friend of theirs say "blackberry sucks!" they might be inclined to say "Actually, I used one, and they're pretty good." That's just step one, but I think an important one worth investing in.

Overall Great review. Its always refreshing when someone actually shows the usefulness of a phones features using real world scenarios. I have a Galaxy S4 (which I love), but I have a hard time understanding the usefulness of some of the features. I guess its better to have them and not need them, than to need them and not have 'em. Cheers!

He did a great job on the video! Only had my Z10 for 10 months and just ordered the Z30 yesterday.....can't wait to get it :)

Posted via CB10

You won't believe the difference. Z30 is the beginning of the "BlackBerry Superphone Era"..

Great start...

CB10 from the Z30

I believe that I'm not the first one to mention this, BUT... why can't blackberry put out something like this for advertising?????????
I mean, the guy is a iPhone lemming and he is short of saying he is doing the switch!!! Ahgrrrr

Posted via CrackBerry on my official 10.2.1 AT&T Z10 BlackBerry

I agree with you wholeheartedly. Hell, I'll do the commercial for free. Well, how about a lifetime supply of new BlackBerry's as they are released. That would be payment enough! :D

I just received 3 Z30 for my wife, my dad, and myself. I am charging them all the way before I even put the SIM card in. I am so excited. Sad that I had to switch carriers to get them on the cheap (contract), but I am super duper happy to have them. I also got a Actiontec Screenbeam!!! Okay, I am going to in the corner and bite my finger nails while they charge! Oh the excitement!!!!!!

You "deserve the best", blu....enjoy and welcome to one of the most "Exclusive Clubs in Mobile - Club Z30"..... only the most discriminating who have the balls to be different are members...

Shhhh...don't tell too many other people about it - we want to keep it exclusive....

CB10 from the Z30

blu...once you get your Z30 "in hand"...we can start your paperwork to join "Club Z30"....BBM Channel is in the works for "the most exclusive club in mobile"...

Let us know...on the DL...

Founding Member "Club Z30"..."the most exclusive club in mobile"

I wish more reviewers were like this for all products. But then again this goes beyound what can be expected kudos to him

A guy running a small business home with limited budget and equipment does Million times better than any marketing done so far to show the amazing features of the Blackberry z30.. Its amazing when I show my z30 to people,, they all love it and not aware that even exists and they all say isn't BB dead. My stager saw my phone and I showed her why its 10 times better than her IPhone for work.. She was blown away with the hub, email, messaging, typing , multi tasking, NFC,, etc.. Please blackberry when you replace your Z30 with the z40 1080p screen(1900x 1200 resolution), more internal memory, brighter screen, better camera with Dynamic Range to steel the Iphone chicks who just take pictures and post on Facebook. Then follow the path of this guys marketing..

Really enjoyed this video...showed me some Z30 features I didn't really know existed that I'd likely use most days...

Does my Z10 have capability to support USB OTG?

I've learnt what Miracast is/ does also.

Great honest review...Learnt something too!

Posted via CB10

This is why I say the z30 is totally awesome, totally stable and fast device. It is a super consumer device along with being a great workhorse. I never use my laptop. It's about time someone demonstrates the z30 properly. The reason why the competition wants BlackBerry destroyed was just shown. You only need the z30, a few peripherals and that's it. Laptop, no for many people, tablet not really required. You need a z30, and a few cables........bingo mobile on the fly!

Posted via CB10

He said your computer and phone had to be connected to wifi to access your computer with your phone but that isn't the case. You can access files over the cellular network from your computer as long as you have that feature turned on....
Also, I watched that video clip on my HDTV streaming via micro USB from my Z30! Booooooyeah!!!!

Posted via CB10

What a great review, he really managed to present the device and make it interesting. And as many already has pointed at, it's all about marketing. Anyone remember the Nokia N8 released back in 2010? No? It had (despite running obsolete Symbian OS) many of those cool features as well. But no decent marketing, no nothing - I suppose we all know what happened (for better or worse) with Nokia.

The Z30 looks great, been considering buying one for quite a while and watching this kind of seals the deal.

if someone at a mobile carrier would just burn this to a DVD-R, and have it playing at the stores with a Z10/Q10/Z30/Q5 (and future models) under it....put it on repeat, MAYBE people will see that the Blackberry 10 platform is a HUGE step-up from what the older Blackberry devices are....and the fact that Blackberry 10 devices have the option to run Android apps AND Blackberry Exclusives, opens the doors to even a BIGGER library of apps.....I do notice he says that not all Android apps work, but that is true with even Android devices....my partner has an Android tablet that won't run some of the apps that BB10 will.....and vice versa.....

So satisfied with my Z30. The experience is orgasmic! When my wife's iPhone 4s died on her, I gave her my almost new Z10 last week. She was hesitant at first but now she's converted. I loved Z10 for its size but battery life was an issue! Don't have to worry about bringing my charger everywhere with me now. After heavy usage from 8 am onwards , I'm at 20% by 11pm. Love it!!

Posted via CB10

I want to leave my z10 and goes to z30, but I play clash of clans.. I dont want to ply from zero...

Posted via CB10

Put this guy in a series of commercials showing the features of BB10. Regular guy doing cool things with his phone. People would identify with that.

Why aren't there any commercials letting people know all of these wonderful things the Z30 can do??!!

Terrific review focused on what the device can do and how well it does it. I see they also do side-by-side comparisons also but are smart about keeping the different types of articles apart. Too often airtime/inkspace is wasted on what the device is not and/or the reviewers personal preferences. I want to know as much as possible about a Z30 in a Z30 review.

How come that BlackBerry still doesn't do something about there marketing. There do not promote there flagship while it is a very good phone?? What kind of a company are you when you're in trouble and don't push it to the limit to do everything to sell your phones and your flagship???

posted via my Z10 

About the DSLR photos to your phone. He could have used Eye-Fi. Http://eye.fi
BlackBerry is not supported but can be downloaded using Android app. Purchase eye-fi memory card for your DSLR. Then all your photos will go directly to your phone instead of using all those wire/connectivities he mentioned.

Posted via CB10

Good article, but it also reinforces the MENTALITY prevalent among iOS and Android users that it's ALL about Apps, Apps, Apps, and more Apps. Yes, now 10.2.1 runs NEARLY all Android apps, but as he highlights in the article, it doesn't run ALL Android apps. In my experience talking to people on iOS and Android, they won't consider BB10 as even a App crack is a deal breaker. It's always Apps. Apps is seared into the market's collective brain.

Posted via CB10

Very much agree with you. At the end of the article I say - "All the focus on closing the App Gap actually distracts from the real reason you would buy a Z30 over on iPhone or Samsung phone – in many ways it simply works better. The reason you would buy a Z30, which can only run 70% of Android Apps over an Android phone is because it has a bunch of other features and functionality that many Android phones don’t have."

It is a real tricky situation for the marketing folks - focus on the apps, which is what many people like to compare in phones (myself guilty as charged) or try to get people to focus on the other features. Focusing on the other features is the strength for BB, but it takes a lot or work (and marketing $) to make the public aware of new features.

Dan.... you are correct...for years now BlackBerry has tried to "out metrosexual must have app Apple and Android"....

The reality is that if, like you did, show a Netflix icon on a Z30 and show it work flawlessly and do the same for Instagram - then you can show the other amazing features....

I mentioned Story maker, yesterday, what about the speakers on the phone that are better than Beats on HTC one..

They sold a lot of those, based on, the speakers alone....crickets from BlackBerry on the features...

Founding Member "Club Z30"..."the most exclusive club in mobile"

That's because the iTard's media has lead the iSheeple to believe that apps are the only thing to consider...

Founding Member "Club Z30"..."the most exclusive club in mobile"

Apps is just an excuse. Most folks don't have a lot of apps installed on their devices, and many needed features are actually built-in to the BlackBerry so you often don't need an app for that :)

Keep rocking it! :)

Great review showing cool stuff most folks aren't aware of. Wish BlackBerry would toot its own horn rather than hoping kind folks discover these goodies and create their own videos!

The problem of BlackBerry is perception, same problem Apple has on the PC front, when Apple makes the best AC while IBM PC and compatibles get most of the sale. The IT departments are mostly complacent.

Absolutely correct! Perception is everything. BlackBerry's name among most people in the public is badly, if not irreparably tarnished. Especially by younger people. Just today I was paying at a gas station in a Toronto suburb...The young clerk saw my phone (Q10) when I placed it on the counter to work the Visa machine. He said "Oh wow! An ancient BlackBerry phone!". I told him it's a fairly new BlackBerry Q10. He said "Well, they're just about dead, and will be out of business very soon". Not the first time I heard a comment like that. I don't bother arguing anymore. Just moved on my way.

Posted via CB10

My humble take on things, as a less informed outsider, is this... In general, to be successful long term you need good products and good marketing. Much has already been stated and debated about the marketing strategy that BB has taken - so I'll pass on that for now. The good news is BB is making good products. As stated, I have been an Apple guy. Before doing this review, I thought like the rest of the public - along these lines..."Oh BB is that company that used to make those phones with keyboards that you type with your thumbs"

After spending 6 weeks with the Z30 it is clear that BB is making very impressive hardware and even more impressive software. So, in my view it is easier to fix the marketing than fix a bad product. They have the product, they have the features, now it is just a matter of picking their battles and fighting. They can not go toe to toe with Samsung...which spends more on marketing than the GDP of Iceland ($14 Billion). BB needs to be smart, go after the low hanging fruit and start to gain some traction.

Sorry, got long again. I guess my point is just - why did I know very little about BB before doing this review? There were 2 possibilities. One that their products were bad and that is why there was not buzz. Two, that their marketing was off and that is why there was no buzz. I think it is a positive for BB and its users that the problem was #2...because that can be corrected.

This is great. I've been waiting to upgrade my BlackBerry 9930 for awhile. So, tell me again, when is Sprint is going to have the Z30?

Own a z30 since dec30/2013 best BlackBerry ever started out 2010 with the curve and graduated it the Torch 9810 which i also loved. This device is fast nice screen size I'm not iPhone fan but did honestly consider trading for a Samsung phone and glad I didn't. Thanks BlackBerry and hopefully the next device has more camera mp is all I want. Love the typing shortcuts