Livermorium’s new Moto Mod will bring back BlackBerry-style physical keyboard

There are a number of Moto Mods on sale and in development that can transform your Moto Z into a speaker, dedicated camera, projector, barcode scanner, and even a mouse. But what about a BlackBerry? As part of Motorola’s “Transform the Smartphone” Indiegogo challenge, one team of engineers has been working on a product that will return a feature missed by many back to a flagship smartphone — a sliding QWERTY keyboard.

The mod, designed by a company called Livermorium, was shown off at CES 2018, where Motorola said it’ll cost $99 and be available in winter. The five-row keyboard boasts curvy, generously spaced keys with multiple functions, LED backlighting, and directional buttons for Android navigation. The Teflon-coated sliding mechanism can also push the phone upward and away at up to a 60-degree angle to the keyboard, like HTC’s old Tilt devices use to do.

Livermorium had originally hoped to also stuff a 1,750mAh external battery into the Mod, essentially giving the Moto Z it’s connected to a ton of extra juice. Livermorium made no mention of an external battery at CES, so it doesn’t seem as though the final version of the keyboard has one on offer. That means that the Mod may actually end up drawing power from the phone, though it hopefully wouldn’t need much.

The Livermorium keyboard was the grand winner of Lenovo’s “Transform the Smartphone” challenge, but there were some other pretty cool entrants, too. One such entrant, called Inhale, gives the Moto Z the ability to test air quality and tell you if you’re being exposed to polluted air.

Lenovo and Vital have also partnered on a new Mod that can be used to track five vital signs in only a few minutes. The Mod comes in at $395, and while it probably isn’t aimed at everyone, it could prove to be very useful to those who need to keep a close eye on their vitals. Among noteworthy features is the ability to test blood pressure with a finger cuff, rather than the traditional band-style arm cuff.

Update: The Livermorium Moto Mod will be available soon for $99.

Product Review

Someday it will do 5G, but the Moto Z3 is already a great phone

Motorola’s flagship smartphone of 2018 looks exactly like its mid-range smartphone of 2018, but powered by a processor from 2017. It’s still a great-performing phone for $480, and it will be the first upgradable 5G smartphone next year.
Android Army

Confused by this year's Motorola lineup? Here's the lowdown on what's to come

Struggling to figure out your E5 from your G6? No, it's not a weird chromatic scale -- it's just Motorola's new roster. But how do you know which is right for you? Find out with our guide to Motorola's 2018 phone lineup.

Motorola launches its iPhone X clone, the Moto P30, in China

Motorola may be planning to launch a new series of smartphones called the P30, P30 Note, and P30 Play. Leaked photos show the P30 has a similar design to the iPhone X, complete with a screen notch.

Trust us, you need to pay attention to Samsung’s new mobile modem

Samsung has announced the Exynos Modem 5100 chip, which usually would not be very exciting, but this one is its first 5G modem that will connect future mobile devices to the super-fast network.

A subway passenger may have snagged a shot of the upcoming Pixel 3 XL

It hasn't been too long since Google launched the Pixel 2, but it's already gearing up for the next iteration, the Google Pixel 3. Here's everything we know about the upcoming phones so far.

HMD may announce the U.S. release of the Nokia 6.1 Plus next week

It's shaping up to be a big year for HMD. After announcing five phones at MWC earlier this year, the handset manufacturer is reportedly bringing another budget phone, the Nokia 6.1 Plus, to the U.S.
Product Review

Sony's underwhelming XZ2 Premium makes a better camera than a phone

Sony’s third flagship phone of 2018 is its first to ever feature a dual-camera lens. The Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium can capture ultra-low-light video far better than the iPhone X or Galaxy Note 9, but is it worth the high cost?

Newly leaked photos show a fully functioning Motorola One Power

Many of us have come to know and love Motorola's extensive lineup of budget phones. But Motorola makes some pretty awesome midrange smartphones as well. And it looks like we're about to see its next phone, the Motorola One Power, very soon.

How to find a lost phone, whether it's Android, iPhone, or any other kind

Need to know how to find a lost phone? Here, we’ll help you locate your lost or stolen phone using both native and third-party apps and services, whether it’s a smartphone or an older variety.

The OnePlus 6T could launch on T-Mobile in October, report says

According to a recent report, the launch of the OnePlus 6T could be different from any other OnePlus launch in history. How? It could have the backing of a major U.S. carrier. The report notes that the phone could launch on T-Mobile.

Apple’s rumored entry-level MacBook may appear in September starting at $1,200

Apple may reveal new products in September including an entry-level 13-inch MacBook based on Intel’s seventh-generation processors. Apple originally intended these units to rely on Intel’s now-delayed 10nm “Cannon Lake” processors.

How much is Spotify Premium, and how can you get it at a discount?

Having access to millions of songs comes at a price -- albeit, a pretty small one. Before you figure out how much is Spotify Premium going to cost you, you’ll want to see if you qualify for a discounted (or even free) subscription.

AirDrop makes sending files to Apple devices easy -- here's how

Want to send files or photos to your friends when you're standing directly beside them? Instead of texting or emailing, why not learn how to use AirDrop? Here's everything you need to know about using AirDrop on both iOS and MacOS.

Save up to $900 with the best smartphone deals for August 2018

Need a better phone but don't want to spend a fortune? It's never a bad time to score a new smartphone and save some cash. We rounded up the best smartphone deals available that can save you as much as $900.