There’s a new BlackBerry … and it’s powered by Raspberry Pi??

I know, I know, when I said you could take my BlackBerry phone from my cold, dead carcass, I wasn’t kidding. There’s still a tiny part of me that wishes someone actually built a 5G BlackBerry that could compete with Android and iPhones … but that never happened. And the one company that claimed to have such a product, some Texas startup called UpwardMobility, was nothing more than vaporware.

So now comes the news that someone has built a new type of BlackBerry – with a Raspberry Pi inner hierarchy.

Hang on … I’m trying to wrap my brain around this.

Say hello to … the Beepberry. It’s got the shell of a BlackBerry phone, complete with the physical keyboard, and has an inner Raspberry Pi hierarchy. From the Beepberry website: “Powered by the Raspberry Pi Zero W (or any other compatible SBCs), you can use it as a chat device (supporting all chat networks on Beeper e.g. iMessage/WhatsApp/Signal/etc. ), or use it as a hackable handheld cyberdeck, running any Linux application that runs on the Pi.”

So … it can’t make phone calls … and it can’t accept emails … but you can send texts to other people with it, and if you know someone who understands that Raspberry Pi is not a desert served with a dollop of Cool Whip … then it’ll work for you. Yeah, you can use it as a messaging tool. And maybe something else.

But that’s it. I guess.

But if you want to purchase this little guy, it’s available for $79 in the base model, or the $99 version that includes Raspberry Pi Zero W. And the company is only making 50 of these units … so once they’re gone, they’re gone.

Am I getting one of the 50 units?

I doubt it. I’m sorry, but all I see here is a glorified pager that was stuffed in a BlackBerry shell. And maybe it can play some ASCII games if you program it properly.

I guess I just need more than that in my life.

So if you want to purchase a Beepberry, go ahead.

And maybe I’ll get one when it adds 5G capabilities.