The BlackBerry KEYone has been a very sought after device since it was officially unveiled at Mobile World Congress in February. Many have been anxious to get their hands on the BlackBerry KEYone and wondering when they can do so. Well TCL and BlackBerry have just announced availability of this new handset for the US and Canada. In the US, the BlackBerry KEYone will be available on May 31st. It’ll be available in unlocked GSM and CDMA variants. TCL also mentions that it will be available at other carriers later in the year, and mention Sprint but they don’t mention anyone else.
For Canada, the BlackBerry KEYone will be available at a slew of carriers including Bell, Bell MTS, Rogers, Sasktel and TELUS business, who will price the handset at $199 CAD on a two-year contract. And it’ll be up for pre-order beginning on May 18th through select partners. TCL nor BlackBerry have announced which partners those are just yet.
The BlackBerry KEYone is the first smartphone from BlackBerry that was designed by TCL specifically for BlackBerry. While TCL did design the DTEK 50 and DTEK 60, those two were devices already made for their Alcatel brand and then rebranded for BlackBerry. The KEYone is also their first Android smartphone with a full physical QWERTY keyboard, instead of it being a slider like the BlackBerry PRIV was – which was actually the last smartphone BlackBerry ever built, since they have now closed down their hardware division, to focus on software and services.
TCL has packed the BlackBerry KEYone with some pretty impressive specifications. It has a 4.5-inch 1080×1620 resolution display, powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor along with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage. There’s also a 3505mAh battery inside which keeps it going all day long and then some. In fact, BlackBerry says it can last over 26 hours of mixed usage. It’s also running on Android 7.1.1 Nougat which is the latest version of Android right now, and it’s stock Android at that. TCL also included a pretty impressive camera on the back of the KEYone, it’s the same camera from the Pixel and Pixel XL actually.