I'll wait for Samsung's square phone

Evan Selleck
Contributing Editor from Arizona
Published: July 8, 2014

If you believe in inspirational quotes, then fortune favors the bold, and that should give you plenty of hope for BlackBerry. This company has reached a level of bold that many people think they may be crazy, especially when it comes to the design of some devices. But what's life without a little risk, right? And for BlackBerry, the company that has been "dead in the water" so many times I can't even count on two hands, a little risk could go a long way.

We've known about the BlackBerry Passport for a little while now, but before BlackBerry started showing off the device themselves, it was all just a big rumor. An even bigger joke for some people. After all, what company is crazy enough to launch a square phone, right? Even BlackBerry can't be that crazy! Oh, but apparently they are, and the Passport is very real. Just yesterday, the company showed off what the device looks like when compared to an iPhone and Samsung's Galaxy S5, and you can certainly tell it apart from the flagship models that flank it.

I don't think anyone can argue with the fact that we've been dealing with rectangular phones for what seems like forever at this point. Way back before the iPhone launched, phone manufacturers were messing around with some really unique phone designs, handsets that twisted and folded and whatever else, but since 2007, we've been essentially looking at the same design over and over again. Sure, they've gotten bigger and thinner, but the biggest revolution to our phone designs these days is where the Power and Volume buttons are positioned.

The argument that we could probably benefit from some unique phone designs, even if it's just the placement of a camera, is a sound one. Manufacturers have been playing it safe for way too long now. I think we're ready for some really unique designs again. The question now? Is BlackBerry the company to kickstart that movement?

It's a similar question to the one many asked when HTC unveiled the UltraPixel camera for their One (M7). We've all known that the more megapixels you shove into a camera doesn't necessarily guarantee you'll get the best image. There's a lot of technology that goes into a camera, and snapping the best photo doesn't mean just throwing numbers at the problem. (Not that cameras with a large number of megapixels inherently take bad photos, mind you.) So HTC's camera for their flagship device utilized a four-megapixel camera on the back. A big risk, to be sure, and the results have been mixed -- even if they tried it again in the One (M8).

Both HTC and BlackBerry have shared the same focus in many conversations: How much longer will they be around in the way we see them now? How much longer are we going to have BlackBerry and HTC manufacturing phones? And that's only relevant here because these are the companies that are truly offering up some "crazy" features and designs here. The companies on the brink, so to speak, are the ones really trying to change the mobile industry as a whole, and that should definitely get some more attention.

However, will it do any good?

I'll be the first to tell you that I'd love to see some unique designs in the smartphone space. Rectangles are great, and maybe some curved displays will change things up enough to make them cool again, but it would be pretty cool to see some exciting designs again. I miss those spinning devices from back-in-the-day.

For the record, I don't think that Samsung is actually going to create a square phone, just to give some clarity on that title. But if any company was going to start, hopefully, trying out some different designs, it would be Samsung. And if BlackBerry can hype up a square phone with a large display, enough to make it actually sound compelling, then there shouldn't be any doubt that Samsung could use their marketing budget and muscle to essentially sell a unique device like a square handset.

Would you buy a square phone? Is BlackBerry the company that's going to get some different devices in our smartphone lineups? Or are we going to be stuck with more rectangles for a long time? Let me know what you think.