The BlackBerry Key2 was unveiled Thursday in NY by TCL Communication, the Chinese manufacturer which took over the rights to the smartphone brand from the Canadian tech firm in 2016. As the name suggests, the handset comes with a physical keyboard, and BlackBerry says that an icon is reborn in this new device. There's still the promise of monthly BlackBerry Mobile security updates, and TCL says that the KEY2 will get "at least one major OS update" in its lifecycle.
The BlackBerry KEY2 will go on sale later this month for a reasonable $649 - an exact date is not yet known, though.
The BlackBerry KEY2 has also passed our Malaysian SIRIM certification which is a sign that it's coming very soon. The global launch event is taking place in NY.
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The KEY2 launch event kicks off at 10am local time, which is 3pm BST. Those interested can tune in to BlackBerry's YouTube channel and watch the live unveiling of the Key2 as it happens.
What do you think of the BlackBerry KEY2?
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According to Blass, the Key2 will start at $649 which delivers a 4.5-inch (1,620 x 1,080 resolution, 434 PPI) IPS LCD with a 3:2 aspect ratio covered in Corning Gorilla Glass 3. But the unique feature is the Speed Key, situated in the bottom right-hand corner of the keyboard. It may not have the power of a Snapdragon 845, but it should make better use of the 3,500 mAh battery, which also supports Quick Charge 3.0. It comes preloaded with DTEK by BlackBerry application that removes the complexity of security by providing an "at a glance" security meter.
On the camera front, the BlackBerry Key2 will sport a dual-camera setup, comprising a 12MP primary camera with a f/1.8 aperture and another 12MP secondary snapper with a f/2.6 aperture. The rear camera is capable of shooting 4K videos at 30fps and 1080p videos at 60fps.
TCL has paired the Snapdragon 660 with 6 GB of RAM and either 64 GB or 128 GB of storage; there's a microSD slot which will take up to 256 GB cards. This is roughly $100 more expensive than the KeyOne which was priced at $549 (or approx Rs 36,851).
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