BlackBerry Outs New Physical Keyboard Options For The KEYone

September 21, 2017 - Written By Mark Real

BlackBerry is now selling variants of the BlackBerry KEYone with AZERTY and QWERTZ keyboards, targeted primarily at the European markets. The QWERTZ keyboard format is used in Central European countries, while the AZERTY keyboard is utilized by consumers in France. From the images posted by BlackBerry’s official social media account, the KEYone’s QWERTZ keyboard exchanges the Y and Z keys of the more globally used QWERTY keyboard while the dollar key is replaced with the Euro symbol. For the AZERTY keyboard, the A and Z keys were swapped with the Q and W keys, although the photograph does not show if there are other modifications that the manufacturer may have made to the keyboard.

People who purchase the device from the manufacturer’s European website are now required to choose the keyboard layout of the handset, the company explained. In addition to that, consumers who purchase the variant with the QWERTY keyboard will also have to choose between the EU and UK power supply. The online store can ship to 28 countries on the continent and also sells accessories like cases and screen protectors. Regardless of your physical keyboard of choice, the BlackBerry KEYone will set you back €599 if you’re buying it directly from the European division of the Canadian firm.

The BlackBerry KEYone is powered by the Snapdragon 625 chipset which is comprised of eight ARM Cortex A53 CPUs clocked at up to 2.0GHz and the Adreno 506 GPU with a maximum operating frequency of 650MHz. The handset sports a 4.5-inch IPS LCD display with a resolution of 1,620 by 1,080 pixels and an aspect ratio of 3:2. The physical keyboard of the BlackBerry KEYone supports swipe input, gestures, and shortcuts that can be assigned to practically every key. Meanwhile, the fingerprint scanner for unlocking the device is embedded into the space bar of the keyboard itself. The rear camera module of the smartphone is equipped with a 12-megapixel IMX378 sensor from Sony, while the front-facing unit has an 8-megapixel sensor with an 84-degree lens. The device ships with a 3,505mAh battery and also supports Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 3.0 technology which should allow it to recharge in a relatively swift manner.