BlackBerry unveiled its much awaited smartphone, the KEYone at the MWC 2017 expo in Barcelona. The smartphone is said to be the company’s last in-house designed and developed smartphone. BlackBerry with the new KEYone smartphone, tried to revive its most striking feature which is the physical QWERTY keyboard in a more acceptable manner, and one which would actually do well, unlike the Priv that featured a slider design. BlackBerry priced the KEYone at $549 which rounds off to Rs 36,500 and will hit select markets in April. While BlackBerry hasn’t announced India launch plans yet, an Indian retailer website has already listed the smartphone online along with its price.
The BlackBerry KEYone is listed under “Coming Soon” on OnlyMobiles, and the price mentioned is Rs 39,999. All the specifications of the smartphone are mentioned in the listing and there is a one year warranty as well, which according to the website is by BlackBerry India. The smartphone also has an EMI option starting at Rs 1,940 per month. Along with the smartphone, accessories like USB Type-C Cable, USB Power Adapter, Earphone, and User Manual are listed as the box contents. There is an offer as well for a refund if the price drops within thirty days of purchase.
The BlackBerry KEYone was initially teased at CES 2017 in January and unveiled officially at MWC 2017. The smartphone flaunts a metallic frame and a soft textured back for easier grip. The QWERTY keyboard while retaining the classic look is actually a ‘smart keyboard’ as each key can be programmed to bring up apps or contacts mostly used. The keyboard also works as a touchpad allowing one to slide across to navigate between homescreens and webpages. The smartphone also comes with a fingerprint sensor which is embedded inside the spacebar.
BlackBerry has infused security features in the Android OS, as seen in the DTEK-series which monitors OS and apps and also keeps users informed about their privacy status. The smartphone runs on Android 7.1 Nougat out-of-the-box. The DTEK software is also able to alert users when the smartphone is being used by someone else without their knowledge. Apps comes with BBM and BlackBerry Hub come pre-installed, BlackBerry is also promising to roll out monthly security patches.
BlackBerry KEYone specifications
The smartphone sports a 4.5-inch 1620×1080 IPS LCD display with aspect ratio of 3:2 and pixel density of 433ppi. Under the hood, the Keyone is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 625 octa-core SoC clocked at 2.5GHz, and paired with Adreno 560 GPU clocked at 650MHz. The smartphone comes with 3GB of RAM and 32GB in-built storage with an option for expanding it up to 2TB via microSD.
In the photography department, the BlackBerry KEYone sports a 12-megapixel rear camera with autofocus, PDAF, f/2.0, EIS, 4K video recording at 30fps and dual tone LED flash. It is the same Sony IMX378 sensor that Google has used on the Pixel and the Pixel XL smartphones. Up front, the smartphone sports an 8-megapixel front facing camera featuring f/2.2 aperture, 1.125um pixel size and 84-degree wide angle field of view lens. Connectivity options on the smartphone include 4G, VoLTE, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.2 Low Energy, NFC, 3.5mm audio jack and USB Type-C port. For power, the smartphone uses a 3,505mAh battery along with Quick Charge 3.0 support.