Friday, January 06, 2017
Blackberry — or I should now rather say TCL — isn’t done with physical keyboards. And as a proof of what I just said, TCL’s Cistulli (the company which now owns the rights to manufacture Blackberry brand phones) teased a video teaser on Twitter that showed a new phone, reportedly codenamed “Mercury”.
The teaser however, had more to do with the physical keyboard that the phone sports, than the smartphone itself. And looking at it that way, we have all the reason to believe that this phone will once again be marketed the way good old Blackberry used — banking on physical keyboards and the nostalgia a few of us have associated with the same.
Before we go on to the phone specs, let me refresh your memory with the fact, that Chinese company TCL now owns the exclusive rights to produce and market ‘Blackberry’ branded phones. Under the terms of the agreement, the former will license its security software and service suite, as well as related brand assets to the latter. TCL in its turn will be designing, manufacturing, selling and providing customer support for the Canadian firm’s mobile devices.
Coming back to the newly teased, ‘Mercury’ Blackberry smartphone, Android Central has reasons to believe that the phone will “feature an unusual 1620×1080 resolution.” Apart from that, like the usual recent Blackberry releases, the phone will feature Android loaded up with BB configurations, largely focussed on security and Blackberry Hub.
But then, these things alone can’t help TCL create and market a phone in the current scenario, when at least 50 other odd brands have flagships or flagship killers or simply killer Android smartphones, that will beat this Blackberry to dust. Then what is unique ? Well, the one thing that has always been — a “physical keyboard”.
And TCL’s North American president Steve Cistulli made sure his teaser focusses much on that.
Now here’s whats interesting. TCL has a history of sorts of buying beleaguered, once-good-now-nothing smartphone brands. Another piece from that, known for its keyboardic phones is Palm, once again owned by TCL.
Well, let’s see if TCL can mix up the two to create a phone which packs in the best of both worlds. The phone will be launched right here at CES
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