Future BlackBerry devices will 'predominantly' have hardware keyboards: CEO Chen

The one thing that most BlackBerry users will unanimously testify as one of the best features of their phones is the keyboard. We don’t mean the software keyboards that BlackBerry 10 devices like BlackBerry Z10 and Z30 afforded, but the QWERTY pad that have been the company’s calling card. Now, BlackBerry’s CEO has suggested that future devices will continue to showcase the same keyboards the company is best known for, despite most of the smartphone world moving to touch keyboards.


In an interview to Bloomberg, BlackBerry’s CEO John Chen said that the company’s future devices will “predominantly” have hardware keyboards rather than touch screens. “I personally love the keyboards,” he was quoted as saying at CES, Las Vegas. "So you will look to Blackberry going forward to do keyboards — I wouldn't use the word exclusively, but predominantly."


With his arrival on the scene in November, Chen has been trying to help BlackBerry rebuild the broken empire to the best of his abilities. He signed on a deal with Foxconn that is to last for the next five-years. The company will be manufacturing and designing some of BlackBerry’s phones in the coming years.


Chen has also put focus back on trying to aim for more enterprise customers, including governments and corporate companies, which can help BlackBerry retain some of its lost glory. Having physical keyboards on future BlackBerry devices can be one way to lure potential customers in, thanks to the familiarity and ease it can afford them. It already has a sizeable fan base.


Don’t believe us? American Idol host, Ryan Seacrest’s side project Typo keyboards aims to bring the touch of a hardware keyboard to Apple’s iPhones. The keyboard sleeve fit on to your iPhone snugly and bear uncanny resemblance to BlackBerry’s curved keys. Seacrest reportedly spoke about how he and his friends in the industry would have to carry two phones – one for emails and one for everything else. No prizes for guessing what phone was used to tap out and send emails. BlackBerry itself isn't too happy about Typo, but that's another story.


So while the industry belief is that virtual keyboards are the in-thing right now, BlackBerry would rather stick to the tried and the tested.

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