Last hurrah: BlackBerry will make one more phone with a physical keyboard

Here's a first look at alleged images of the new BlackBerry

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Sayid Zulhusni/123RF
Feeling nostalgic for those days of yore when your phone came with a physical keyboard? Well, those days may soon be returning. According to John Chen, the CEO of BlackBerry, those who just can’t get enough of clicking away on an actual keypad may soon have reason to celebrate. “We have one keyboard phone I promised people,” Chen told Bloomberg TV. “It’s coming.”

Given that BlackBerry announced earlier in 2016 that it would no longer be designing or making its own smartphones, it looks like the firm is planning for one last hurrah and one that is true to BlackBerry’s signature keyboard. Because surely, we cannot live in a world where the only option is a touchscreen.

On Saturday, Chinese social network Weibo posted what appears to be leaked images of the upcoming BlackBerry phone. However, the authenticity of these images has not been verified.

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While no specs were released alongside the alleged images, rumors have suggested that the new handset will feature a 4.5-inch full HD display, a 2GHz octa-core Qualcomm processor, 3GB of RAM, an 18MP rear-facing camera, and an 8MP front-facing camera. As for its operating system, we can probably count on Android 7.0 Nougat.

It’s still unclear as to when the handset would be released and how much it would cost. For that matter, those of us in the U.S. might not even be able to get carrier support for a new BlackBerry, especially now that the company has moved more and more in the direction of software and away from its hardware roots.

While Chen has hinted at the possibility of a new BlackBerry phone with its trademark keyboard, his Bloomberg TV interview was the first confirmation we received of the handset. Now that he has really sent the rumor mill churning, we will be sure to keep you posted on any new developments about the smartphone.

But don’t hold your breath, friends. This one may be in the works for a while.

Article originally published in November. Updated on 12-5-2016 by Lulu Chang: Added leaked images and specs. 

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