#IFA2017 – BlackBerry is no longer manufacturing smartphones on its own. It has licensed its brand to China-based TCL which is now making BB-branded smartphones. The first result of this collaboration was the BlackBerry KEYOne and now the two companies are gearing up to launch another handset. It has been confirmed that there’s going to be a new all touchscreen BlackBerry handset which will be unveiled this October.
This was confirmed today by François Mahieu, head of global sales for TCL, during the company’s IFA 2017 briefing in Berlin. “Two months from now, we will have a touchscreen solution to show,” he said.
TCL had previously said that it would release as many as three BB-branded devices this year but it has launched only one so far. This is the first we’ve heard from the company about a new BB-branded smartphone and now we know that it’s going to be out this October.
It’s not going to be all that different from the BlackBerry KEYOne apparently. TCL says that the new handset will be roughly the same price as the KEYOne and its major differentiating factor will be that it’s going to be all touchscreen without a QWERTY keyboard.
This doesn’t mean that TCL is not going to launch any keyboard touting BB handsets in the future. There will be more of them down the line. “We’re here to stay and we’re going to roll out more BlackBerry products in the coming years, starting this year,” Mahieu said.