BlackBerry has kick-start this year MWC event in Barcelona with a new flagship smartphone called KEYone. The new device which has been severally rumoured in the past few months as “Mercury” will be the Canadian company last designed phone to be manufactured by TCL Communication.
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BlackBerry has again embraced physical QWERTY keyboard on its latest device. The physical QWERTY buttons which are layed below the display in four rows are backlit, and there are three software keys layed on top. The QWERTY can be customized with up to 52 different shortcuts; supports gesture, and are touch responsive.
What further differentiate KEYone from other Android smartphones released by BlackBerry in the past is its wide spacebar placed at the bottom which also accommodates the fingerprint sensor underneath. The phone is wrapped around edge with anodized aluminium while it sports a soft textured back cover for easy grip.
The KEYone runs Android 7.1 Nougat out-of-the-box. It comes with BlackBerry security suite of app such as DTEK and is pre-installed with Google Play Store.
BlackBerry KEYone Specifications
- 4.5-inch touch display with 1620×1080 pixel resolution, 433ppi, 3:2 aspect ratio, scratch-resistant glass
- 64-bit 2.0GHz octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor, Adreno 506 GPU
- 3GB RAM
- 32GB built-in storage (expandable up to 2TB via MicroSD card)
- 12-megapixel rear camera, f/2.0 aperture, Sony IMX378 sensor, Phase Detection Auto Focus (PDAF), dual-tone LED flash, 4K video recording
- 8-megapixel front-facing camera, f/2.2 aperture
- OS: Android 7.1 Nougat
- Fingerprint scanner (beneath spacebar button)
- 4-row physical QWERTY backlit keyboard, capacitive touch
- Connectivity: 4G LTE, WiFi 802.11ac (dual band), Bluetooth 4.2, 3G HSPA+, GPRS/EDGE, GPS/A-GPS + GLONASS, USB Type-C
- Battery: 3505mAh, Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0
- Dimensions: 149.3 x 72.5 x 9.4mm
- Weight: 180 grams
- Color(s): Black
The BlackBerry KEYone is priced at US$549, and at €599 and £499 for the European market (depending on region). It will be available globally starting from April 2017.
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