TCL has announced the latest BlackBerry device at CES 2017 in Las Vegas and its looks screams of nostalgia as they still have the QWERTY keypad at the bottom of the upcoming device — dubbed as Mercury — like good yesteryears.
BlackBerry has been long out of the race since Android overtook the smartphone world by storm and the once king of the professional world was rendered obsolete.
Reminiscent of the good old-fashioned days, the new device that was showcased at CES 2017 has a full-blown QWERTY keypad below the touchscreen. The keypad looks glossy, giving it a mirror finish to go with the touchpad.
Failing to adapt to changing times — and OS — the Canadian company had a fall from grace not to long ago and since has learnt from its mistake and has collaborated with TCL to save face.
Steve Cistulli, President and General Manager for TCL Communication (TCT), North America said, “Our industry is in the midst of a revolution, where consumers are now demanding greater functionality and value from their mobile devices than ever before. To meet these growing demands, both carriers and retailers need more diverse product offering.”
As seen in a video posted by Michael Fisher, the keypad can also be used to scroll through the menu and pages too.
The rear end of the phone has a leather finish, which gives the device a premium feel and finish.
Enjoy our official first look at what’s to come from the newest BlackBerry smartphone. More to come at MWC. pic.twitter.com/gHkwepCPbJ
“We’ve reached a point in our industry when we must boldly go where no other handset manufacturer has gone before; evolving how we serve our customers and consumers,” he continued.
“Business and market growth must go beyond just delivering value-focused handsets, and must now include a much more complete portfolio of devices and brands. These are just the building blocks of our new growth strategy, with additional announcements to come in 2017,” Cistulli added.
The phone is rumoured to sport a 4.5″ screen and will be powered by a Qualcomm processor that clocks at 2GHz at least. Both front and rear cameras might receive the same specs, which might be at least 16MP or greater.
The phone might also come with a 4GB RAM and 64GB of on board storage and will be officially unveiled with a complete spec list at the Mobile Word Congress in Spain next month.
The phone certainly looks different from our usual smartphones, but only time will tell how successful the company will be to market a device with a physical keyboard to the masses who’re now acclimatised to typing on touchscreens.