As expected, BlackBerry today took the wraps off of a more affordable version of its KEY2 flagship.
The BlackBerry KEY2 LE will begin rolling out globally in September, including in markets like the U.S., U.K., France, Germany, UAE, and Canada. Pricing will start at $399 USD / €399 EUR / £349 GBP / $519 CAD for the 32GB model and go up to $449 USD / €429 EUR / £399 GBP / $579 CAD for the more capacious 64GB model.
In order to achieve that lower price, the BlackBerry KEY2 LE has some tweaked specs compared to the standard KEY2. The KEY2 LE has a Snapdragon 636 processor instead of a Snapdragon 660, 4GB of RAM instead of 6GB, and a 3000mAh battery rather than a 3500mAh battery. The dual rear camera setup has undergone a change, too, with the KEY2 packing dual 12MP sensors and the KEY2 LE offering a 13MP + 5MP setup.
One feature that hasn’t changed with the KEY2 LE is the keyboard. It’s got a physical QWERTY keyboard with keys that are nearly 10 percent larger than the keyboard on the BlackBerry KEYone. There’s also a fingerprint reader inside the space bar and a Speed Key that’ll give you access to your programmable keyboard shortcuts without requiring you to go back to the home screen.
Other specs of the BlackBerry KEY2 LE include a 4.5-inch 1620×1080 LCD screen, 8MP front-facing camera, and a microSD card slot for adding more storage. Quick Charge 3.0 support will let you recharge your battery more quickly, and the KEY2 LE will ship with Android 8.1 Oreo. It’ll be available in three colors: Atomic (red), Champagne (gold), and Slate (black).
The BlackBerry KEY2 LE definitely has some reduced specs to help it be nearly $300 less than the standard KEY2, but its feature set is still respectable. Plus, it’s not like there are a ton of other smartphones on the market with a physical QWERTY keyboard, so if that’s what you’re after and you’re looking for something a bit more affordable than the standard KEY2, then the KEY2 LE will be coming for you next month.