It s all but confirmed that the BlackBerry Mercury smartphone will be unveiled at MWC 2017 next month at Barcelona. But seems like there is already another BlackBerry smartphone in the pipeline — a budget offering restricted to emerging markets. Also Read - Blackberry 5G smartphone 2021 comeback confirmed again, to bring physical keyboardsAlso Read - Blackberry is coming back once more, will debut in 2021 with a flagship keyboard phone
The smartphone in question is codenamed BBC100-1, and it is said to be aimed at emerging markets like Indonesia. With that in mind, the upcoming smartphone will be light on the pockets, and one of the highlights will be the dual-SIM card slots. This would be the first BB smartphone with dual-SIM functionality. Also Read - TCL will not design, manufacture or sell BlackBerry smartphones from August 31
As per the leak, the BBC100-1 will feature a 5.5-inch HD (720p) display, and will be powered by a 1.4GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 425 chipset paired with 4GB of RAM. There will also be 32GB internal memory on offer, but there s no word on the presence of a microSD card slot yet.
The smartphone is also expected to feature a 13-megapixel rear camera, an 8-megapixel selfie camera, and a 3,000mAh battery. There s however no word on what version of Android OS the smartphone will run on at the time of launch.
According to CrackBerry, the BBC100-1 is being built by PT BB Merah Putih. BlackBerry announced last year that it had signed a licensing agreement with PT BB Merah Putih, which is basically a joint venture set up in Indonesia and led by PT Tiphone, an affiliate of one of the country s biggest mobile carriers, Telkomsel. As a part of this deal, the Indonesian company can source, distribute and promote BlackBerry-branded smartphones running on Android OS. Since it is not being built by TCL, the BBC100-1 is unlikely to launch in international markets, and may not be unveiled at MWC next month.
BlackBerry is also on a comeback of sorts, despite having left the smartphone manufacturing space. Built by TCL, the BlackBerry Mercury brings back the QWERTY keypad, and adds the convenience of an Android OS. Teased at CES 2017, the smartphone features a BlackBerry Passport-like capacitive keypad, which allows users to scroll through things using touch. There is also a fingerprint sensor embedded into the space bar, and a USB Type-C port.