To be clear, there is a whole new BlackBerry 10 operating system which is being rolled out onto two new handsets - the fixed keyboard Q10 is rumoured to be released in April.
Z10 - features and functionality
The phone is fast. Applications run in real time, nestled in a dashboard until specifically exited, and the 1.5GHz dual-core processor makes light work of multi-tasking - even for the fast fingered.
The super-light 4.8oz boxy frame is not too dissimilar from the iPhone 5, save a little wider and void of a menu button. The screen sizes up to 4.2 inches - fractionally longer than Apple's latest offering. In terms of hardware and specifications there is not a great deal that separates the two.
With the Z10 you will enjoy slightly better battery longevity than with most smartphones since talk time pushes 11 hours on a full charge. Screen and camera are clearly up to par with a 1,280x768 LCD and 8MP rear camera.
BlackBerry showcased their buttonless 'Flow' interface ahead of the launch:
Z10 - failings and frustrations
Given their handsets have traditionally been built with business in mind, this attempt to get a bigger slice of the consumer market lacks a few big names when it comes to apps. Blackberry boasted an array of 70,000 at launch there are some startling omissions, which may prove a deal-breaker for some.
Photo sharing platform Instagram and the massively popular free messaging service Whatsapp have not been ported over to the new OS - thus far - and there appears to be a distinct lack of picture editing and creative apps, such as Twitter's new video sharing tool, Vine.
Big names such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn come preinstalled on the Z10, but various glitches have surfaced. Twitter timelines have appeared skewed with avatars appearing to be matched to the wrong tweets, as well as a clunky refresh facility.
The ever-popular BlackBerry Messaging service (BBM) of course comes as standard but the new voice and features have been blocked in the UAE and most of the Gulf. In addition, the email setup does allow full functionality for Gmail, where iOS and Android seamlessly allows archiving and slicker synchronisation.
Perhaps one of the most disappointing issues beyond the third party apps is the Z10's Voice Control, which seems to struggle with basic commands. The BlackBerry blogging community expects updates to come sooner rather than later.
Swiping away the past
The ailing manufacturer decided to ditch their old moniker at the launch of the BB10 platform. Blackberry had become synonymous with their handsets and RIM had become synonymous with being on the brink.
Despite focussing on what is lacking, it must be said that the new device is fast, light and solidly reliable. The buttonless screen incorporates intuitive swipe motions and BlackBerry's 'Flow' - shown above - is perhaps the boldest and most impressive innovation overall. Second to that is arguably the intelligent keyboard, which tries to keep a step ahead in suggested keywords you may be typing.
Whether or not the Z10 will prove to be a big hit in the enterprise and consumer markets remains to be seen but it's worth noting that everything that holds it back can be remedied with just a few updates and app releases. The smartphone itself is undeniably impressive.
Previously: Blackberry exec Chris Corsi discusses the Z10 at BlackBerry's global launch.