BlackBerry

TCL unveils Qwerty Keyboard BlackBerry Smartphone, well sort of!

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TCL unveils future of BlackBerry Mobile as part of the company’s Product Portfoilo at CES 2017
TCL is today sharing plans for an industry-first brand portfolio business model, which now enables the company to offer an entire suite of mobility products, including new BlackBerry smartphones.

This brand pillar approach focuses on multiple facets of the company’s product portfolio: the entry-consumer, best-in-class enterprise, connected (IoT) and emerging segments – all leveraging the success of the TCL Communication manufacturing, R&D and operations along with the legacy of some of the industry’s most iconic brands, including Alcatel and BlackBerry.

The device has a full-featured hardware keyboard which is not only good for typing, but it also retains the capacitive swiping gestures seen in the Priv — you can swipe on the keyboard to navigate the interface, and swipe up on it during typing to help with word corrections and suggestions. Above the keyboard, BlackBerry chose to move back to fixed capacitive navigation keys. The keyboard has the full set of functions available on the Priv, but also has the addition of a fingerprint sensor in the space bar.

As for the the rest of the phone hardware, you get a volume rocker and programmable key on the right edge, a power button the left edge, a headphone jack on the top and USB-C port on the bottom centered between two speaker grilles.

“Our industry is in the midst of an evolution, where consumers are now demanding greater functionality and value from their mobile devices than ever before,” said Steve Cistulli, President and General Manager for TCL Communication (TCT), North America.

“To meet these growing demands, both carriers and retailers need a more diverse product offering, requiring portfolio efficiencies that were previously unavailable from a single manufacturer – until now. We’re boldly evolving our business, offering end-to-end efficiencies from sales, through R&D, manufacturing and logistics. This business evolution will provide greater value to our customers in the premium post- paid and affordable no-contract tiers.”

Offering carriers and retailers exceptional quality and value, backed by TCL’s world-class R&D and manufacturing capabilities, the TCL Communication portfolio will be anchored by the Alcatel and BlackBerry handset brands while continuing to evolve in 2017. This will include additional mobility offerings to be announced in the first half of the year that will allow the company to further address consumer demands.

Among the first products in this portfolio is the latest BlackBerry smartphone, focused on three core features: security, productivity and reliability. Previewed at CES, the smartphone draws on unparalleled mobile security and software expertise to offer the most complete end-to-end smartphone security available on Android.

So after the teaser video and the hype of a CES unveiling, we can’t confirm the the specs, price, features, launch date or even the official device name, other than to say we’ll hear more “around the Mobile World Congress timeframe next month as Cistulli added,

“We look forward to unveiling details around this distinctly different and impressively designed BlackBerry smartphone around the Mobile World Congress timeframe next month,”

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