BlackBerry has gone back to its QWERTY roots with the launch of the new Q20 smartphone.
The BB10 device will include features like the BlackBerry Hub for users to access their messages all in one place, and also features BES10 for enterprise connectivity. Physically, the handset has a 3.5-inch touchscreen, making it the largest display on a QWERTY BlackBerry. The 'Menu', 'Back', 'Send' and 'End' buttons as well as the trackpad will become an 'integral part of the device' for easier navigation.
The Q20 will be available globally in the second half of 2014.
CEO John Chen said: 'In my first 90 days on the job, I consistently heard from our ardent BlackBerry customers that the hard buttons and trackpad are an essential part of the BlackBerry QWERTY experience, that made their BlackBerry smartphone their go-to productivity tool. I want these customers to know that we heard them, and this new smartphone will be for them.
‘Today, we’re delighted to announce the new BlackBerry Q20 smartphone, which is designed to give you the distinct experience that every BlackBerry QWERTY loyalist and high-productivity business customer absolutely loves. With the BlackBerry Q20 smartphone, you’ll get the familiar hard buttons and trackpad that you want, along with the best email service, the best keyboard experience and the best battery life possible.’
The Canadian manufacturer has also unveiled its new Z3 smartphone, designed especially for the Indonesian market. The 5-inch display comes with BB10 OS version 10.2.1 pre-loaded, BlackBerry Hub, BBM and the BlackBerry Keyboard.
The device will be available from Indonesian carriers from April.
Chen added: ‘We are excited to introduce the new BlackBerry Z3, the first smartphone to emerge from our strategic partnership with Foxconn, which was announced in mid-December, 2013. The BlackBerry Z3 embodies all that BlackBerry 10 offers, with its exceptional productivity features and reliable communications, in a stylish, all-touch design made affordable for customers in Indonesia.’
Foxconn chairman Terry Gou said: ‘BlackBerry is beloved in Indonesia and its loyal fans have made it a popular smartphone brand. This is why we are so proud to be able to help bring BlackBerry even closer to Indonesia with a fantastic product that will be accessible to even more Indonesians. This is only the beginning of what we know will be a long and fruitful partnership between Foxconn and BlackBerry.’