BlackBerry DTEK50 vs DTEK60

by Volker Weber

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Horia asked me a question this morning, that I did not know the answer to: does the DTEK60 have an FM radio like the DTEK50 has? Frankly, I had not even noticed that the DTEK50 had a radio. And no, the DTEK60 does not have one.

This got me thinking about how I feel about these two devices. I mean, if you look at the specs, the DTEK60 wins hands down. It is superior in every aspect. More memory, faster chipset, better screen, better camera, larger battery. But somehow, I like the DTEK50 better.

DTEK50 is what I would call a non-bling phone. It feels rugged, it is very thin and light, and it provides a great grip when holding it. It's a secure Android phone that is very practical without winning any pissing contests. If you don't play 3D games, it provides all the power you need. It's likely to survive a drop, but you will never drop it, because you are holding it so well.

DTEK60 is different. It's larger, less comfortable to hold, and with its glass back it is more slippery. There is however one thing that makes the DTEK60 more practical: the fingerprint sensor. For some reason, the DTEK50 is the only BlackBerry that does not support Picture Password. I have asked BlackBerry about it for months and this is as far as I have gotten with an answer:

We’ve discussed with Product Management and they’ve informed us that it is still on the roadmap but cannot provide a specific timeline. Picture Password is a complex feature embedded in the OS and will be part of a major software update.

What is Picture Password? When setting this up, you select a photo, a number, and a location on the photo where that number belongs. When it's time to unlock your phone, it will display a grid of numbers on top of your photo. Your selected number appears multiple times on that grid. Now you move the grid across the photo until one of them is in the correct location. This is a very fast way to unlock, and if you do this correctly, nobody can see what you are doing. If you don't touch your selected number, it's impossible to figure out which number belongs where. PRIV has a hardware keyboard, DTEK60 has a fingerprint sensor, both support Picture Password. Just not the DTEK50 which would benefit the most.

While the DTEK60 has a larger battery than DTEK50, I don't get more battery life out of it. First of all, it draws more power. The really interesting observation is that both phones sleep extremely well and can last for days. But when you turn the screen on, they burn through the battery rather quickly. This plays out for the DTEK50 again. You have a smartphone that can do everything you need. You just don't look at it all day.

Comments

I'm pretty happy with my DTEK50. You already mentioned the major pros and cons. The battery consumption when the screen is on is a major annoyance, yes. One thing you didn't mention: The vibration alarm is far too weak. My phone is silent all the time and I used to feel notifications fine with the Nexus 4, but miss them all the time with the DTEK50.

Hanno Zulla, 2016-11-08

Noted, thanks. A Pebble would solve this.

Volker Weber, 2016-11-08

I bought a DTEK50 and and I am semi-satisfied with it. One thing I find really annoying is that icons for SMS etc. doesn't show a number when having unread messages. It is really easy to miss that you have gotten a message (I am sure there is a cure for that).

Jesper Kiaer, 2016-11-08

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I explain difficult concepts in simple ways. For free, and for money. Clue procurement and bullshit detection.

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