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BlackBerry KeyOne - Can You Call It Retro?

Sprint Product Ambassador

     It wasn't too long ago phones had physical keyboards and the king of the keyboards became Blackberry. With their iconic look and feel nothing could compare. The KEYone definitely gives a throwback to this all-time retro design. This keyboard is nothing like its predecessor. It comes loaded with tons of flicks, hacks, swipes and holds to keep you going.   




   Blackberry's KEYones keyboard holds secrets that I'm going to bring to life. For starters each one of the 52 keys can be setup for both a long and short quick launch. Access this setting from the blackberry launcher under keyboard shortcuts. Select any of the 52 keys to be assigned. Each key can be assigned to open an application, speed dial, send a message, or select any of the devices options (add a task, calendar, etc.). Blackberry has preassigned a few of the keys but of course you can always change them.


app-drawer.jpg      Settings.jpg


Keyboard shortcut.jpg      Screenshot_20170828-074326.png


  • Long press "A": Contacts
  • Long press "B": Chrome
  • Long press "C": Compose email
  • Long press "D": Add note
  • Long press "H": Help
  • Long press "K": Lock screen
  • Long press "L": Calendar
  • Long press "M": Hub
  • Long press "N": Open in BBM
  • Long press "O": Settings
  • Long press "P": Check call history
  • Long press "S": Search
  • Long press "T": Add task
  • Long press "W": Call voicemail

This is just the tip of what the keyboard can do. It also functions as a scroll mouse when browsing websites or scrolling through text messages. Doesn't matter which direction you hold the device either vertical or horizontal. Sliding up/down or left/right will move you through the pages you are viewing keeping the screen free for viewing and reading. No more obstruction from your fingers when scrolling.


* credit from "


When it comes to texting the Blackberry KEYone provides optional flick typing. As you begin to type 3 optional word choices appears above the keyboard. To select the option simply flick up under the word to be selected. If you are unsure the word to use type a few letters if none of the 3 selections match what you want hold your finger on any of the 3 words to get a few additional optional choices to select from as well. Just select the word at this point. But let's say you selected something or made mistype. You can either push the delete key for a single letter to be deleted or swipe on the keyboard from right to left to delete the last word typed. This feature is very responsive and I can delete whole sentences pretty quick.


* credit from ""


As an addition to short cuts and quick selections next comes quick keyboard hacks for applications like Chrome. Just like your desktop counterpart you can also utilize these shortcuts on your phone. Chrome Shortcuts typically use the ALT and the CTRL key. The KEYone already has the ALT key hard encoded to a specific key for use. You can hard encode one of the 2 shift keys to be utilized as a CTRL key "Assigning the CTRL Key".  


Some options to try out include:

Spacebar for fast scroll down

CTRL+Spacebar for fast scroll up

ALT+D Select the navigation bar


When inside a active text input section:

CTRL+N new tab

CTRL+F Find in page option


Outside of Chrome the CTRL feature can be used like standard keyboard commands. For instance CTRL+C to copy, CTRL+V to paste. Though these options only work while in an active testing section like a browser heading or within a text input section like messaging apps. Grabbing text from within articles is not yet working standard copy and paste within android will still function for this need.


The blackberry KEYone offers some compelling and much appreciated keyboard features that make a standard iconic keyboard come to life. This physical connection brings something back that I have missed, that true tactile feel of entering information. The Blackberry KEYone is a great device and I hope you see the benefits that they have put into make this device stand out from the rest.


Enjoy and remember never use your phone or tablet while driving, be safe and healthy.

The Product Ambassadors are Sprint employees from many different parts of the company that love technology. They volunteer to test out all sorts of Sprint devices and offer opinions freely to the Community. Each Product Ambassador shares their own opinions of these devices, therefore the information in this post does not necessarily reflect the opinions of Sprint. The PA's do not represent the company in an official way, and should not be expected to respond to Community members in an official capacity. #sprintemployee