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The QWERTY phone lives! Here’s 7 keyboard phones you can buy right now

There is clearly something about using a smartphone with a physical keyboard. Often regarded as old, defunct tech; the QWERTY phone still lives, and there are various examples out there that are still on sale. Surprisingly, they aren’t all made by BlackBerry, either. If you like the soft click of a key under your finger instead of the cold, unforgiving surface of a touchscreen, then this roundup is especially for you.

Related: 10 great smartphones you can buy for $400 or less

Regardless which major network you prefer, and even if you want to spend no money at all, there is a QWERTY-equipped smartphone out there with your name on. Just don’t expect any of them to rival an iPhone 6S or an LG G5 for stunning high-specs, or amazing games-playing ability.

BlackBerry Passport

BlackBerry Passport

The Passport looks like a blend between classic BlackBerry devices and modern design, and while it’s a nice-looking phone, it’s currently only available through AT&T.

The price is a high $500, but you are getting decent specs, including a quad-core Snapdragon processor, a 4.5-inch HD screen, and a 13-megapixel rear camera. The keyboard has been updated for modern times, and is designed for total typing accuracy, plus it has a cool set of touch-based gesture controls. Read our full review here.

Buy it now from:

AT&T

BlackBerry Priv

BlackBerry Priv
The Priv is perhaps the most sought after phone with a QWERTY keyboard these days, and for good reason. The device is BlackBerry’s current flagship, and looks much like a standard touchscreen phone, but with a slide-out keyboard that lives under the display when not in use.

In making the Priv, BlackBerry did away with BlackBerry OS in favor of Android, opening up the device to the millions of apps on the Google Play Store, as well as an operating system that you’re probably more familiar with. It also offers a display with 2,560 x 1,440-pixel resolution, 3GB of RAM, 32GB of storage, and a microSD card to expand on that storage. The rear camera is 18MP, and it’s further by a 2MP front-facing camera. It’s a cool $720 to buy outright, or $30 per month over 24 months. Unless you’re with AT&T, in which case it’s $640 outright or $21.34 per month over 30 months. You can also pick it up SIM-free at Amazon for $500. Read our full review here.

Buy it now from:

AT&T Verizon T-Mobile Amazon

NEC Terrain

NEC Terrain
Built to meet military toughness standards, the Terrain will withstand some abuse, plus it’s water and dust resistant too. It has a 3.1-inch touchscreen with a 640 x 480 pixel resolution, fixed above a four row QWERTY keyboard. Below this, there are a pair of forward facing speakers, so you can hear the caller even in very loud environments. Other specs include a 5-megapixel rear camera, a VGA front cam, and 4G LTE connectivity.

Android 4.0 is the operating system, which isn’t the most up to date version, and the dual-core Snapdragon S4 chip probably won’t be the best for gaming either. However, it’s not really about specs or power, the NEC Terrain is a workhorse; and for surviving where other phones fail, it’ll probably do a good job.

If you pay over 24 months it will cost $14.34 per month, or $430 if you want to buy the phone outright. The device is only available through AT&T.

Buy it now from:

Amazon AT&T

BlackBerry Classic

BlackBerry Classic

The second of three BlackBerry devices on this list, the Classic is a classic-looking phone indeed. It’s priced at $430, runs BlackBerry 10, and has a 3.5-inch screen above the traditional physical keyboard. It’ll connect to 4G networks, and has an 8-megapixel camera on the back.

The Classic is really aimed at the BlackBerry fanatic – someone who misses the days of BlackBerry being the king of the phone world. If you’re not already familiar with BlackBerry OS, you’ll have to get familiar to use the Classic. The price of the Classic depends entirely on which carrier you’re with. Read our full review here.

Buy it now from:

AT&T Verizon T-Mobile

LG Extravert 2

LG Extravert 2

The optimistically named Extravert 2 is another device with a side-sliding QWERTY keyboard, which is covered over by a 3.2-inch touchscreen. It’s a chunky little thing at 15mm thick (twice that of a new iPhone), and only has a 2-megapixel camera on the back, but the battery should last 17 days on standby, which the new iPhone definitely can’t match.

At $110 without a contract, it’s pretty expensive for a feature phone, but cheaper than the very similar LG Expression through AT&T. Alternatively, you can pay $4.58 over 24 months if you so choose.

Buy it now from:

Amazon Verizon

LG Xpression 2

LG Xpression 2

The LG Xpression 2 is very similar to the Extravert 2, but made for AT&T instead of Verizon. It features a slide-out keyboard, along with a 2MP camera and Bluetooth 2.1. Yes, it’s outdated, but this wouldn’t be the phone to buy if you needed something up to date. It’s a little pricier than the Extravert 2, coming in at $140, and it’s probably a little too pricey for what it has to offer.

Buy it now from:

AT&T

LG Cosmos 3

LG Cosmos 3

If the Extravert’s 17 days of standby isn’t enough, then how about the more than 30 offered by the Cosmos 3? This feature phone also has a slide-out QWERTY keyboard hidden underneath a small screen and alphanumeric keypad combo, and comes with a 1.3-megapixel camera, and – wait for it – software that includes a tip calculator. Dizzying stuff. It’s cheaper to buy outright than the Extravert at $90, or $3.74 per month for 24 months.

Buy it now from:

Amazon Verizon

This article originally published February 12, 2015, and updated on April 29, 2016, by Christian de Looper to include the BlackBerry Priv and the LG Xpression 2.