TCL Communication-manufactured BlackBerry KEY2 will sport 6GB of RAM and retain the physical QWERTY/QWERTZ keyboard of its 2017 predecessor while improving it, recent reports indicate, with the volume of rumors about the upcoming Android smartphone suggesting its launch is imminent. The handset has already been certified by both Bluetooth SIG and the Wi-Fi Alliance, in addition to receiving approvals from several telecom regulators around the world, with TCL’s preparations for its commercial launch presumably nearing completion.
Besides offering twice as much RAM as the base model of the KEYone did, the KEY2 is also expected to deliver an upgrade in the system-on-chip department, being powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 660 instead of the Snapdragon 625. In terms of real-world performance, that shift should allow for even better battery life given how the handset will still have a 4.5-inch LCD panel with a resolution of 1,620 by 1,080 pixels amounting to a blocky aspect ratio of 3:2, even though its battery is now said to have a slightly lower capacity – 3,360mAh as opposed to 3,505mAh. 64GB of flash memory should also be part of the package, together with a microSD card slot supporting up to 2TB of expandable storage.
The BlackBerry KEY2 is said to be featuring a dual-camera setup entailing a 12-megapixel sensor and an 8-megapixel one, as well as an 8-megapixel front-facing module. A 3.5mm headphone jack will still be included, with the handset being expected to run a custom implementation of Android 8.1 Oreo out of the box. It’s presently unclear whether TCL will be marketing the device as the KEY2 or KEYtwo, though the overall look of the handset should remain mostly unchanged, with the biggest visual difference from last year being a new matte keyboard. The BlackBerry KEYone started at approximately $550, depending on the market, and its successor is likely to compete in the same upper mid-range segment, with TCL possibly planning two variants of the handset featuring different memory configurations.