Gear & Gizmos: Blackberry Passport, the phone for 'power professionals'

MT reviews affordable drones and cross-border communication tools, but will Blackberry's Passport get our stamp of approval?

by Adam Gale
Last Updated: 24 Feb 2015

Steven Barnegren's Translator Keyboard (iOS)


You want to impress a new foreign business partner with your linguistic skill. Unfortunately, this extends no further than directing your aunt to the station in schoolboy French. If that's your problem, the Translator Keyboard may help. Unlike copy and paste programmes, this translates as you type, within any app, into anything from Vietnamese to Welsh. Just make sure you don't meet in person, or you might end up with l'oeuf sur votre visage.

Rating: *


£198 plus £8.20 a month service charge and £4.90 day pass

Let's face it, it's hard enough to get a decent internet connection when you're in London, let alone rural Cambodia. Goodspeed is a handy mobile Wi-Fi hotspot designed to keep you connected on your business trips, wherever they may be. Its nine prepaid sim slots cover 60 countries, relieving you of the hassle of buying cards from the local souk, but you'll have to travel a lot for the serious savings on roaming charges to cancel out the upfront costs.

Rating: **

Parrot AR Drone 2


If you've not been following the news, drones are in. This 1.8kg, iPad-controlled quadrocopter has a range of 50m, a top speed of 15mph and comes with a gyroscope-steady 1280x720 HD camera for all your aerial reconnaissance needs. Keep an eye on the sales team, see who's really scoffing all the biscuits and strike the fear of God into your rivals, all from the comfort of your office. Make sure you don't actually strike your rivals though - that would be illegal.

Rating: **

BlackBerry Passport


Blocky, addictive, Canadian - the device that devoured your 2006 is back. The Passport's square 4.5-in screen and quirky QWERTY keyboard make reading emails and editing spreadsheets a dream, but may play havoc with your pockets. It's armed with US Defense Department-standard encryption and it's a single hub for all your communications. But, despite access to Google Play apps, it's light on leisure. Possibly BlackBerry's last gasp, it's sure to divide opinion.

Rating: ***

Find this article useful?

Get more great articles like this in your inbox every lunchtime

Could coronavirus lead to gender equality?

Opinion: Enforced home-working and home-schooling could change the lives of working women, and the business...

Mike Ashley: Does it matter if the public hates you right now?

The Sports Direct founder’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic has drawn criticism, but in the...

4 films to keep you sane during the coronavirus lockdown

Cirrus CEO Simon Hayward shares some choices to put things in perspective.

Pandemic ends public love affair with Richard Branson et al

Opinion: The larger-than-life corporate mavericks who rose to prominence in the 80s and 90s suddenly...

The Squiggly Career: How to be a chief strengths spotter

When leading remotely, it's more important than ever to make sure your people spend their...

"Blind CVs don't improve your access to talent"

Opinion: If you want to hire socially mobile go-getters, you need to know the context...