Today, BlackBerry CEO John Chen revealed promising news about the company’s financials and showcased a couple of drool-worthy QWERTY devices that are expected to launch late this year. One of the device introduced is the Blackberry Classic, the more traditional-style BlackBerry. The Classic re-introduces the “belt” of physical keys below the screen. This will be undoubtedly well-received by users who preferred the navigation and UI of the original BBOS-era BlackBerry smartphones. The phone keeps the square aspect ratio and approximately the same screen size as the Q10. The styling remains conservative while preserving the premium feel that is expected of a modern BlackBerry smartphone.
The second device is the BlackBerry Passport, which seems to have carved out a new category of smartphones. The large QWERTY smartphone introduces a large square touchscreen with many of the traditional BlackBerry physical keys missing. The only physical keys remaining are the letters keys, shift, space bar, and enter keys, and not much else. Some of the keys appear to be touch-sensitive, with the implementation of this capability still yet to be unveiled.
With QWERTY taking centre-stage in BlackBerry’s 2014 portfolio of devices, the question for many traditional BlackBerry users is which device is for them.
Personally, I’m leaning towards the Passport. With the large high-res touchscreen, touch-sensitive keys, and a likely huge battery, its looking like the only QWERTY phone that redefines the experience of typing on a phone with physical keys. The size may make it unwieldy during one-hand use for anyone that isn’t a professional basketball player, but it could prove to be a very compelling two-handed device.
Let us know which device you prefer by participating in the poll below and in the comment section below!