If we talk about the biggest resurrections of 2017 in the smartphone world, apart from Nokia, it was Blackberry which managed to remain in the headlines last year. With the Blackberry KeyOne and Motion, the smartphone maker once again made its presence felt in the market and now, has huge plans for 2018, as well.
While the world is eagerly waiting for new launches at the MWC 2018, Blackberry is silently preparing to launch a couple of devices, one of which is going to be the Blackberry KEYone successor.
For the unknown, the KeyOne was launched in August 2017 with a 4.5-inch touchscreen display coupled with a QWERTY keypad and came with decent hardware internals to woo interested buyers in the mid-budget segment.
Before dwelling into the details about the Blackberry KEYone successor, let’s take a look at what KEYone itself has to offer.
- 4.5-inch (1620 x 1080) 3:2 FHD IPS display with 433 PPI and scratch-resistant glass protection
- Octa-Core Snapdragon 625 14nm processor clocked at 2GHz paired with 650MHz Adreno 506 GPU
- 4GB RAM and 64GB of internal memory, expandable up to 2TB with microSD card
- 4-row backlit Physical QWERTY keyboard with capacitive touch
- Android 7.1 (Nougat) out of the box
- Hybrid dual SIM (nano + nano / microSD) and Fingerprint sensor embedded in the space bar.
- 12MP rear camera with Sony IMX378 sensor, f/2.0 aperture, dual-tone LED Flash, 1.55μm pixel size, 1/2.3″ sensor size, PDAF and 4K video recording.
- 8MP front camera with f/2.2 aperture and 1.12µm pixel size
- 3.5mm audio jack and FM Radio
- 3505mAh battery with support for Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0
- Dimensions: 149.3 x 72.5 x 9.4mm and Weight: 180g
- 4G VoLTE, Bluetooth v4.2, Wi-Fi 802.11 ac, GPS + GLONASS, NFC and USB 3.1 Type-C support.
While all these specifications don’t make up for a formidable smartphone which can justify its $499 price tag, the Blackberry KEYone is no underdog either, especially in terms of real-life performance and multimedia consumption.
Now, BlackBerry Athena, which is said to be the Keyone’s successor with a physical keyboard, has started making the rounds on benchmark sites. While we earlier reported that the Blackberry KEYone successor might come with 6GB of RAM, this new rumor suggests that the smartphone in question is going to get a huge bump in this aspect with 8GB RAM under the hood.
Moreover, BlackBerry Athena is going to come with Snapdragon 660 SoC instead of the Snapdragon 625 chipset which will further increase its performance credentials, something which every smartphone maker in this segment is banking on.
Apart from that, it is also going to come with a dual-rear camera setup at the rear which has become a sort of benchmark specification in the competition and while all these rumors should be taken with a pinch of salt, it will be interesting to see how Blackberry manages to price Athena aka the KeyOne successor competitively in order to stand out among the likes of OnePlus 5T and Nokia 8 (also their respective successors).
Everything said and done, Blackberry is expected to go all out in 2018 and since there will be several new smartphone launches, it will be interesting to see how BlackBerry Athena or whatever its final name is going to be, steals the spotlight.