Sprint Becomes First U.S. Carrier To Get BlackBerry KEYOne

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The BlackBerry KEYOne has been selling in the United States for quite a while now, but so far only the unlocked version of the smartphone was available. Now those who want a carrier-specific KEYOne can get one from Sprint.

BlackBerry KEYOne now available on Sprint

By offering the KEYOne, Sprint honored its earlier statement, in which it said it would start selling the handset in the summer. It also makes Sprint the first U.S. carrier to offer the latest BlackBerry-branded handset. Last month, there were rumors that Verizon was also looking to launch its own carrier-specific KEYOne. However, there has not been any official announcement since then.

“This is a highly anticipated launch as we partner with Sprint who is among the first U.S. carriers to offer the award-winning BlackBerry KEYone,” said TCL, which licenses the BlackBerry brand for the KEYone.

Sprint is offering the KEYOne for an easy installment of $22 each month for 18 months, notes The Verge. This sets the total cost of the KEYOne at $396, a big discount compared to the unlocked version of the phone, which costs $549. According to Sprint, the BlackBerry KEYone is expected to launch for online direct ship on July 14. The handset will hit retail stores by July 28.

In a statement, Sprint Chief Marketing Officer Roger Sole said, “We are pleased to bring BlackBerry back into our device portfolio and we believe the BlackBerry KEYone will be a hit with our customers. It pairs perfectly with Unlimited Freedom, giving Sprint customers the convenience of unlimited data on an incredibly powerful and security-conscious smartphone.”

Screen popping issue fixed

Shortly after the BlackBerry KEYOne was launched, it faced a screen popping issue. The company, however, stated that they knew about the issue. Calming users’ nerves, the company said that to make sure nothing goes wrong, it is evaluating additional measures by giving more strength and adhesive to the KEYOne display.

Now we know that the company has fixed the issue. In a tweet last week, BlackBerry said, “These new measures are already being implemented on new KEYOnes and are beginning to hit our retailer and carrier inventories – and will continue to come in stock throughout the summer.”

Further, the Canadian firm said users who already purchased the KEYone are fully “covered by our manufacturer’s warranty, so if any issue arises, please contact us and we can help you with a warranty replacement if needed.”

With the KEYOne, BlackBerry is looking to preserve its QWERTY keypad and at the same time, offer users what they can get in the other latest phones. The KEYOne has a 4.5-inch IPS LCD 1650x 1080 display, a Snapdragon 625 SoC, 3GB of RAM, 12MP and 5MP cameras, and a huge 3,505mAh battery giving up to 26 hours of mixed use. Further, it has made sure that users get the latest security updates.

On Thursday, BlackBerry shares closed down 0.1% at $9.89. Year to date, the stock is up more than 44%, while in the last year, it is up more than 48%.

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