Earlier today, we finally got some details regarding the upcoming launch of the BlackBerry-branded KEY2 smartphone in the United States. TCL, the company that's manufacturing BlackBerry-branded smartphones these days, officially unveiled the handset earlier this month, and now we know it'll be available to buy early next month.
When it does launch, it's going to be priced at $649.99, which means it will be $100 more than what the KEYone was priced at last year. I've seen quite a few people point out the price difference between the two models, with many suggesting that there isn't much of a reason why potential owners need to fork over more money this year versus last.
I'm honestly a bit on the fence on that particular topic.
Is the new KEY2 worth $100 more than last year's model? Probably. After all, it does come with a dual rear camera setup, which, hopefully, will be better than what the KEYone brought to the table. And BlackBerry says it has made improvements to the physical keyboard, too, which is great. But unless you're upgrading from the first KEY smartphone to the newest model, that might not be anything you even notice.
And maybe you don't even really notice after upgrading.
But in all honesty the KEY2 is a mid-range handset that now costs just under $700 (after taxes). That gets you 64GB of built-in storage, so if you were looking at competing handsets --like the Galaxy S9-- you'd only have to pay a little more than $719 to get a flagship with top-tier specs.
Or you could even go with the OnePlus 6! Which tops out at 8GB of RAM and 256GB of built-in storage for $629.99.
But of course the main difference between the KEY2 and those other handsets is probably the main reason why you'd even be considering the KEY2 at all: that physical keyboard. But is it worth that higher price tag? That's what I'm having trouble really coming to terms with.
Then again, I can safely say that I'm not in any need to have a physical keyboard anymore. So maybe paying that price would seem perfectly fine if the KEY2 was a smartphone I had been waiting for.
What about you? If you own the KEYone, are you planning on upgrading to the KEY2? If not, what's keeping you away, and are you switching to a different phone altogether? And if you aren't considering the KEY2 this year, what's the major reason why it's not on your radar? Let me know!