BlackBerry's Android-Powered KeyOne to Launch Next Month in Canada and US

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In September previous year BlackBerry announced it had stopped making phones.

Pre-ordering will be available in Canada first, while buyers in the US can pre-register now to receive updates and offers ahead of the KEYone's release.

In Canada, the smartphone will be available through Rogers, Bell, SaskTel and Telus for C$199 on a 2-year contract.

The KeyOne will be BlackBerry's last smartphone designed and engineered in-house.

The smartphone pioneer made a decision to exit the hardware business in September 2016 in favour of licensing agreements, such as the one with TCT.

In December 2016, the Ontario-based BlackBerry licensed the right to manufacture its hardware to Chinese electronic company TCL, though Blackberry is still behind the scenes working on the software.

"BlackBerry fans in Canada will be extremely excited to have the BlackBerry KEYone available in their market", said Alex Thurber, Sr.

"We are delighted to launch the BlackBerry KEYone first in the United Kingdom with Selfridges".

BlackBerry KEYone also known as BlackBerry "Mercury" was unveiled at MWC 2017 in the month of February. The big selling point of this phone is that signature BlackBerry keyboard.

If you still hanker after a phone with a keyboard, the BlackBerry KeyOne is a phone you might actually want to consider, although it costs a rather hefty £499. There's also a fingerprint scanner built into the spacebar. Only this time, the device runs on the Android platform.

The BlackBerry KEYone comes with a 4.5-inch IPS display with an odd 1620 x 1080 pixels resolution sporting a pixel density of 433 ppi and Gorilla Glass 4 protection. There's no word when BlackBerry plans to bring the KeyOne to India. There is an 8-megapixel front facing camera with a wide-angle lens and a flash module.

It includes a 3,505 mAh battery that can be charged to 50% in 36 minutes and a speedy SnapDragon 625 processor.

"Secure software is integrated into the chipset and locked long before it gets near to the assembly line", said BlackBerry Mobile's Global Head of Device Portfolio, Gareth Hurn, no doubt alluding to reports of smartphones and PCs being infected with malware during assembly.

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