BlackBerry goes full touchscreen with new smartphone

The BlackBerry Motion has ditched the brand’s signature keyboard and has a 14cm-wide touchscreen, with an Apple-style home button at the bottom.

© BlackBerry Mobile

BlackBerry has launched its first all-screen smartphone, ditching the keyboard for a touchscreen like competitors Apple and Samsung.

Apple-style home button

In a similar style to the iPhone, the Blackberry Motion has a home button at the bottom of the screen, which also works as a fingerprint sensor to unlock the phone. The button is rectangular, with the BlackBerry symbol on it.

The phone is water and dust resistant, says BlackBerry parent company TCL Communication, and also has an 14cm anti-scratch display and the largest battery ever used in a BlackBerry phone.

It has an aluminium frame and a soft-grip textured back. It has quick-charging capabilities, a battery life of 32 hours, and runs on Android software. Apps can be purchased through the Google Play store.

It also has a “locker” feature that allows users to save photos and documents directly to internal storage rather than to a cloud, and a “convenience key” that allows users to quickly choose customised settings depending on whether they are at home, at work or travelling.

This includes connecting to a home wifi network or in-car Bluetooth, or highlighting meetings or apps that are commonly-used in different places such as home or work.

Follows BlackBerry KeyOne launch

The launch of the new phone comes after BlackBerry released its smartphone BlackBerry KeyOne in March, which combined both a classic keyboard and touchscreen.

This followed the company dropping its original smartphone from sale, the Classic handset, which was launched in 1999 and ran on the company’s own operating system Blackberry OS. The well-known business phone was held landscape-ways rather than portrait and had a keyboard rather than a touchscreen.

The phone was dropped after BlackBerry’s subscribers plummeted by 62 million between 2013 and 2016, as more people chose smartphones that ran on iOS and Android software, according to the Guardian.

The Blackberry Motion will be available to buy for £399 in the UK through shops such as Carphone Warehouse, Selfridges, John Lewis and PC World, from November this year.

It will also be available for “other select markets”, though these have yet to be specified.

© BlackBerry Mobile
© BlackBerry Mobile

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