BlackBerry Classic launch signals return of trusty trackpad

BlackBerry Classic launch signals return of trusty trackpad
Is BlackBerry back at its best?

The BlackBerry Bold range was insanely popular in its day, but since the Canadian firm switched to touchscreens and BlackBerry 10 its fortunes have somewhat dwindled. With the BlackBerry Classic it's looking to get the feel good factor back.

Officially unveiled today the BlackBerry Classic is aimed squarely at the business market, although avid BB fans will be able to get hold of one if they so wish.

The headlining feature on the Classic is the return of BlackBerry's touch sensitive trackpad and navigation bar - a feature last seen on the Bold 9900 and Bold 9790.

According to BlackBerry the trusty trackpad is the single biggest feature users have been calling for since the switch to the BlackBerry 10 operating system, and with it you also get back, menu, call and end keys.

Back to the future

BlackBerry's excellent QWERTY keyboard resides below the navigation keys, while above sits a 3.5-inch, 720 x 720 display.

BlackBerry Classic

You also get a 1.5GHz dual-core processor, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of internal storage, microSD slot, 8MP rear camera and 2MP front facing snapper. It comes running BlackBerry 10.31, while connectivity is covered by 4G, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth 4.0.

As a business focussed device it's the integration with the BES 12 management system and Gold level security which will attract companies to the Classic with an unprecedented level of control.

Those of you in the US and Canada can pre-order the Classic from today online, with the handset costing $449 (AU$550) in the States and $499 in Canada, with phones rolling out from December 30.

BlackBerry has confirmed the Classic is also available for pre-order in the UK for £349, with EE and Vodafone also involved with handsets expected to start shipping in mid-January.

John McCann
Global Managing Editor

John joined TechRadar over a decade ago as Staff Writer for Phones, and over the years has built up a vast knowledge of the tech industry. He's interviewed CEOs from some of the world's biggest tech firms, visited their HQs and has appeared on live TV and radio, including Sky News, BBC News, BBC World News, Al Jazeera, LBC and BBC Radio 4. Originally specializing in phones, tablets and wearables, John is now TechRadar's resident automotive expert, reviewing the latest and greatest EVs and PHEVs on the market. John also looks after the day-to-day running of the site.