When BlackBerry announced KEY2 for the first time in June, the biggest trouble we heard was the price. It was reasonable criticism when BlackBerry asked a lot of its consumers at $ 650. With this knowledge, BlackBerry has gone down, made some downgrades and lowered the price, creating the KEY2 LE.
The BlackBerry KEY2 LE is a scaled-down version of the KEY2. To lower $ 250 from the price tag, BlackBerry had to water down several aspects of the phone. Fortunately, they have not lowered the core specifications too much to compromise overall performance. The result is a KEY2 that is likely to reach far more people than the normal version ever could.
RAM: 4GB Display: ] 4.5 "1620 x 1080 IPS LCD Memory: 32 or 64 GB (expandable via microSD) Rear View Camera: 13 MP + 5 MP Front Camera: 8 MP Audio: Mono Speaker Mounted Bottom, No Headphone Jack Water Resistance: N / A Battery: 3,000 mAh Biometrics: Fingerprint Scanner (front)
Let's start with what was transmitted: BlackBerry has the same display as the KEY2 , the 4.5-inch IPS LCD panel, on the paper that seems to be quite small, it is not a s small, it seems personal. Its smaller size was also needed to capture the outstanding feature of the KEY2 LE, the keyboard.
The physical keyboard is almost the same as its brother, though TCL (which made the hardware) shrank the keys by 10%. But with such large keys on the KEY2, most should not notice the differences. The front camera is also the same. BlackBerry managed to carry the 8 MP selfie camera that can record 1080p video.
More importantly, KEY2 LE retains BlackBerry software, the second most important feature of the phone. The KEY2 LE runs the same version of Android, 8.1 Oreo, along with all the changes found in the regular version, such as DTEK security, Privacy Shade, and BlackBerry Hub.
In addition, the new "Speed Key" allows you to assign an app to individual buttons, even if they are returned in another app. The "convenience key" and its intelligent profiles are also returning.
What has changed
Here, the KEY2 LE makes it a bit harder to swallow something. BlackBerry changed five key aspects of KEY2 when KEY2 LE was released, four of which are downgrades.
When a manufacturer makes a Lite version of a phone, the first demotion is to the SoC, and KEY2 LE is no exception. Despite using a newer chipset in the Qualcomm Snapdragon 636, the KEY2 LE processor is best described as an underclocked Snapdragon 660 (the processor used in the original KEY2). The SoC is also paired with a slower GPU, but the GPU of the original KEE2 was nothing special at first.
The RAM memory also drops from 6 to 4 GB. Android works well with 4 GB, the OS strives for larger amounts of RAM. In no case will this dramatically affect the performance of KEY2 LE, but it will limit the number of apps you can run in the background.
With a less power hungry SoC comes a smaller battery. The battery capacity dropped slightly over 14% to 3,000 mAh. However, the KEY2 had plenty of room in this department because the regular version easily took more than a day (sometimes two depending on your usage).
Internal memory also drops from 32GB instead of the 64GB base of the KEY2 model. You can still get the KEY2 LE in 64GB, but the price will increase by 50 €.
The cameras took the biggest hit, from two 12 MP to a 13 MP and 5 MP sensor. While this may seem like a deal breaker, the KEY2 original cameras were not that great at first. BlackBerry tried to make it functional, but it was clearly not their focus, so do not buy the LE like the KEY 2 if you want or need a fantastic camera.
4. Less Gestures
One of the useful features of KEY2 was the ability to use the physical keyboard as a trackpad. You can scroll up and down to navigate web pages, and left and right if there is additional horizontal content. Unfortunately, this was sacrificed in the name of the prize. The trackpad initially had limited support but was handy if you could use it. Fortunately, the space bar, which also serves as a fingerprint scanner, could still stay.
With this new LE model, which is not sold to business users, BlackBerry decided to have fun with the colors. The KEY2 LE will have three new colors: Slate, Champagne and Atomic. Everyone is funny and they are all outstanding colors as the traditional black and silver of the KEY2.
Price & Availability
The BlackBerry KEY2 LE will be available in September. The 32 GB model is sold for $ 399, while the 64 GB model rises to $ 449. Again, that is $ 250 for a phone that is amazingly secure, different and has a fantastic battery life. If you are interested in the KEY2 but do not like the price, this is the phone for you.
The Key2 LE is not just a downgrade. With the help of plastic metal parts BlackBerry was able to reduce the weight of the phone by a few grams. It also includes a new feature where the phone reads your calendar and recommends which battery percentage you should leave the day based on how busy your day looks. Small things, but helpful changes.
What do you think about the new BlackBerry KEY2 LE? Do you like the introduction of the Lite version? Let us know in the comments below.