Blackberry KEYOne Smartphone With 12MP Rear Camera Launched Prior to MWC 2017

Blackberry KEYOne Smartphone With 12MP Rear Camera Launched Prior to MWC 2017


The TCL-produced smartphone, running Android 7.1, is the first under a new licensing strategy by BlackBerry.

According to TCL, the KeyOne "is intentionally created to offer the most secure Android smartphone experience possible", as the firm remains keen to push the smartphone towards business customers.

Earlier today at MWC 2017, BlackBerry resurrected the QWERTY keyboard with the KEYone - an unusual Android smartphone built by TCL, BlackBerry's new hardware partner.

Enter China's TCL and the KeyOne, an Android-based smartphone combining what was once Blackberry's USP and a 5.5 inch touchscreen. The phone has a 4.5-inch display screen with a 1620 x 1080 resolution.

As for the processor, the KeyOne will be powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 625, as previously rumored. You have a Qualcomm Snapdragon 625, 3 GB of RAM, and 32 GB of expandable storage on the one hand.

Finishing off the phone's impressive specs sheet, the latest BlackBerry smartphone runs a 12-megapixel camera on the rear using the Sony IMX378 camera sensor - that's the same snapper fitted within the brilliant Google Pixel. An 8MP camera is placed at the front with 1.12µm pixel size, f/2.2 aperture. It comes with DTEK software which monitors the security of the operating system and all the apps, alongside notifying owners when their privacy is at risk. The device runs Android 7.1 out-of-the-box. The fingerprint scanner is also embedded in the space bar key, making it the only modern smartphone out there to have this feature. Shortcuts can also be assigned to each key; I for access the email inbox or M for maps.

Although a device that marks a new era for BlackBerry phones, the KEYOne will continue to grab attention for the same reason as its predecessors - that physical keyboard.

The KeyOne will go on sale in April, and is only available in black.

BlackBerry KEYOne does feature a USB Type-C port, a 3mm headphone jack and a noise cancellation microphone.

It is not just the typing that you can do with the QWERTY keyboard of the KEYone. The body uses an aluminum frame, with the display covered in Gorilla Glass 4, and the back getting a soft-touch panel. Both smartphones come with support for Qualcomm QuickCharge 3.0, and in the United States, the LG G6 will also include support for wireless charging.

A Reddit thread quickly popped up and eagle-eyed users already took screenshots of the BlackBerry KeyOne product page while it was still live. This is similar to what we saw with the Priv a few years back, and as it was useful back then, it's nice to see it all come through for the KeyOne as well.

  • Terrell Bush