1. nucks26's Avatar
    I'm coming from a Pixel 2XL. I ditched my KEYone Black Edition around January, so I've had several months with the Pixel 2XL before moving to the KEY2. I purchased the unlocked silver edition from blueshop.

    Firstly, the design of this phone is much improved from the KEYone. I won't say the build quality is better because the KEYone also had fantastic build quality. However, the little things make a difference here. The material on the back of the KEY2 is very similar to what was on the Classic and Passport SE. Its grip is much better than that of the KEYone. If you mix this improved backing with squared off edges vs the KEYone's rounded edges, you get a device that sits securely in your hands without the worry of dropping it. I typically like using naked devices without a case wherever possible. I purchased a cheap transparent gel case for my KEYone that provided grip; I don't think I will need to do the same for my KEY2.

    Secondly, the keyboard. It's simple; it's improved. The keys are larger, matte instead of glossy, and overall a complete joy to type on. Yes, I have noticed the space bar sounds a little bit different than the rest of the keys as I've noted in one of my other threads. However, it is not something that bothers me, nor would I have even noticed it if I wasn't looking for it. I do not have a "loose" space bar as some have noted.

    Thirdly, performance. Let me make this VERY clear. The KEY2 has had absolutely ZERO stutter, lag, or hiccups. Absolutely nothing. This should be due to a mixture of hardware improvements from the KEYone, (660 w/ 6 gb ram), and some software optimizations on BlackBerry's part. As far as I know, oreo manages cached data on its own, where as on nougat devices I had to constantly clear my cache. Conite can correct me there if I'm wrong. Anyways, coming from a Pixel 2 XL, I have noticed absolutely zero difference in day to day performance and speed. So, for all you spec heads out there, you do not need a Snapdragon 845 processor to have a fast device. Period.

    Battery life is about the same as my KEYone. No problems here.

    The speed key is a fantastic addition to the KEY2. I think it's very powerful and efficient to be able to mix the speed key with my never ending amount of keyboard shortcuts I have programmed. It allows me to have a clean home screen without any clutter (I'm looking at you CBK). I still tend to go home before I go to another app, but I'll get used to using the speed key more as time goes on.

    Photo quality has been pretty good for me in direct sunlight. I wouldn't say it's any better than the KEYone. I'm coming from a Pixel 2XL so the camera on the KEY2 should look atrocious, right? Well, not really. The Pixel 2 XL's camera is indeed on another level, but I've realized that I don't really take that many photos. When I need a good photo, the KEY2 will provide it.

    However, I didn't talk about video quality. I'm going to agree with Flossy Carter here. The video quality so far on the KEY2 is "trash." Even in direct sunlight, my videos appear to be blurry, and very jittery. Definitely not a video experience I would expect from a device priced this high. I get that BlackBerry devices aren't media consumption devices, but that's no excuse to provide unacceptable video quality just because you specialize in a different area of the phone. So, the still photos are satisfactory, the videos are unsatisfactory. I'm hoping a lot of this has to do with software, but I'm generally feeling pessimistic.

    Some honorable mentions: button placement on the right side is great. The grooves on the lock button make sense. Call quality and signal strength have been excellent. I haven't really brought this thing into an environment where it should struggle quite yet, however.

    So, should you buy this device? My answer is, it depends. If you're coming from a BB10 device, or KEYone, than absolutely. For you KEYone owners, the performance improvement alone is enough to upgrade. Now add in the improved keyboard and refreshed design, than it's a no brainer. I'm a little bit disappointed with the camera so far in terms of video, but as mentioned before, I don't take many photos. Therefore, I take even fewer videos. Still, I think BlackBerry mobile should have put in some more effort here than just slapping a dual camera setup on there to make you think it's an improvement. I'm not buying it and neither should you. The Pixel 2 still arguably has the best camera on a smartphone a year later thanks to software, not hardware.

    If you're coming from another flagship device, it's still very hard for me to justify buying the KEY2. The biggest issue for me is indeed price. I can understand why BlackBerry Mobile would price this device where it is. But from a consumer's perspective, it's hard for somebody like myself to justify buying this device when I already had a Pixel 2 XL with a better display, better camera, front firing stereo speakers, dust/water resistance, etc. But, I do value my security and privacy more than the average person my age (yes, I'm a millennial). So for that reason, the KEY2 does still have a competitive advantage over other smartphones in my opinion.

    Those of you that NEED a physical keyboard, the KEY2 is a great option, your only option, really. I PREFER a physical keyboard, but I don't necessarily NEED one. I will continue to use the KEY2 for the foreseeable future. I'm hoping software will improve the camera experience.

    Bottom line: if you have the money, buy the KEY2.
    Last edited by nucks26; 07-18-18 at 12:15 PM.
    the_boon and ck2nb like this.
    07-18-18 11:53 AM
  2. Privacymatters's Avatar
    I have a priv and the camera is better..screen is better..and it has a more premium build than the key2. IMO if you have a keyone do not upgrade to a keyone. Save your money
    07-18-18 11:59 AM
  3. nucks26's Avatar
    I have a priv and the camera is better..screen is better..and it has a more premium build than the key2. IMO if you have a keyone do not upgrade to a keyone. Save your money
    The PRIV does not have better build quality than the KEY2. How does that squeaky body with a mushy keyboard have better build quality? Not to mention performance was atrocious. My PRIV would heat up and have a stroke every time I opened snapchat.
    the_boon likes this.
    07-18-18 12:03 PM
  4. Lobwedgephil's Avatar
    Good review, well thought out and a lot of good information, thanks! I will disagree with you about performance coming from the Pixel 2 XL, which is my previous phone as well. The Key 2 doesn't offer close to the performance of the Pixel 2 XL, now the performance is pretty good, and miles better then the Key1 though.
    07-18-18 12:07 PM
  5. nucks26's Avatar
    Good review, well thought out and a lot of good information, thanks! I will disagree with you about performance coming from the Pixel 2 XL, which is my previous phone as well. The Key 2 doesn't offer close to the performance of the Pixel 2 XL, now the performance is pretty good, and miles better then the Key1 though.
    Thank you. Depends on what apps you run also. From my day to day use I don't experience a difference. (Texting, emailing, phone calls, opening up social media, banking etc).
    Lobwedgephil likes this.
    07-18-18 12:10 PM
  6. Privacymatters's Avatar
    The PRIV does not have better build quality than the KEY2. How does that squeaky body with a mushy keyboard have better build quality? Not to mention performance was atrocious. My PRIV would heat up and have a stroke every time I opened snapchat.
    Depending on the model u get it does..my model has none of those issues. I owned the key2 and returned it. It's a cheap feeling piece of plastic. The keyone is a better phone
    07-18-18 12:43 PM
  7. JOHNGAETANO's Avatar
    Great review, spot on. Agree, having come from the Note 8, it's not an easy choice, but I love the little things the K2 offers that the Note doesn't. I also love the fact the BB software engineers are always working on making the software better.
    07-18-18 12:46 PM
  8. stormzero's Avatar
    Depending on the model u get it does..my model has none of those issues. I owned the key2 and returned it. It's a cheap feeling piece of plastic. The keyone is a better phone
    I returned the key2 and went back to my keyone. The keyboard, grip and weight were the only improved thinks.

    I was told from a swiss supplier that a camera update on the key2 is not planned.
    07-18-18 12:54 PM
  9. nucks26's Avatar
    Great review, spot on. Agree, having come from the Note 8, it's not an easy choice, but I love the little things the K2 offers that the Note doesn't. I also love the fact the BB software engineers are always working on making the software better.
    I too used a note 8 briefly but then quickly reverted back to my Pixel 2 XL. I didn't like Samsung's duplicate apps and bloat. I also didn't like Bixby and its dedicated button.
    chortya likes this.
    07-18-18 01:14 PM
  10. JOHNGAETANO's Avatar
    After a week, I really don't miss the Note 8, and certainly don't wish I had my wife's iPhone X. My K2 has been rock solid. Fingers crossed some of the camera issues get resolved, as I have taken some rock solid photos, but have experienced inconsistent behavior. With the great camera sensor, we know the hardware isn't the problem.
    07-18-18 01:24 PM
  11. the_boon's Avatar
    After a week, I really don't miss the Note 8, and certainly don't wish I had my wife's iPhone X. My K2 has been rock solid. Fingers crossed some of the camera issues get resolved, as I have taken some rock solid photos, but have experienced inconsistent behavior. With the great camera sensor, we know the hardware isn't the problem.
    Owning a KEY2 and a Note 8 pretty much gives you the most complete package you could have in the Android world. One with the PKB, grippy back, sturdy design, great battery life, and the other with the huge AMOLED, Spen, nice dual cameras.
    07-18-18 01:34 PM
  12. Mikeberry66's Avatar
    I have a note8 and an iPhone 7 Plus. I use both. Looking forward to the key2 to get my blackberry fix back on. Had the KeyOne and found it almost unusable after six months. Very laggy and slow. Key2 seems to have addressed these issues. Even the design looks more sleek and premium. I miss using all my keyboard short cuts!
    07-18-18 01:55 PM
  13. tfitzpat03's Avatar
    The PRIV does not have better build quality than the KEY2. How does that squeaky body with a mushy keyboard have better build quality? Not to mention performance was atrocious. My PRIV would heat up and have a stroke every time I opened snapchat.
    I know I shouldn't laugh at this but...this was hilarious ๐Ÿ˜‚
    the_boon and A Noise Annoys like this.
    07-18-18 01:59 PM
  14. nucks26's Avatar
    I know I shouldn't laugh at this but...this was hilarious ๐Ÿ˜‚
    Lol, best way I could describe it really.
    07-18-18 02:57 PM
  15. Privacymatters's Avatar
    Lol, best way I could describe it really.
    Yeah because your light weight plastic key2 is so premium right..im lol at your delusion about that device lol..best I could do ;-)
    07-18-18 03:32 PM
  16. the_boon's Avatar
    Yeah because your light weight plastic key2 is so premium right..im lol at your delusion about that device lol..best I could do ;-)
    I don't know why people look down on plastic as a material for smartphones. It helps make the devices lighter therefore less prone to breakage when dropped.

    As soon as Samsung went all glass with the Galaxy S6, the phones absolutely require a case for the real world.

    It's fairly known that weight is a big factor of how badly damaged a device will get after a drop. Some will argue that too light isn't good for a PKB though.
    07-18-18 03:48 PM
  17. mcne2001's Avatar
    I'm coming from a Pixel 2XL. I ditched my KEYone Black Edition around January, so I've had several months with the Pixel 2XL before moving to the KEY2. I purchased the unlocked silver edition from blueshop.

    Firstly, the design of this phone is much improved from the KEYone. I won't say the build quality is better because the KEYone also had fantastic build quality. However, the little things make a difference here. The material on the back of the KEY2 is very similar to what was on the Classic and Passport SE. Its grip is much better than that of the KEYone. If you mix this improved backing with squared off edges vs the KEYone's rounded edges, you get a device that sits securely in your hands without the worry of dropping it. I typically like using naked devices without a case wherever possible. I purchased a cheap transparent gel case for my KEYone that provided grip; I don't think I will need to do the same for my KEY2.

    Secondly, the keyboard. It's simple; it's improved. The keys are larger, matte instead of glossy, and overall a complete joy to type on. Yes, I have noticed the space bar sounds a little bit different than the rest of the keys as I've noted in one of my other threads. However, it is not something that bothers me, nor would I have even noticed it if I wasn't looking for it. I do not have a "loose" space bar as some have noted.

    Thirdly, performance. Let me make this VERY clear. The KEY2 has had absolutely ZERO stutter, lag, or hiccups. Absolutely nothing. This should be due to a mixture of hardware improvements from the KEYone, (660 w/ 6 gb ram), and some software optimizations on BlackBerry's part. As far as I know, oreo manages cached data on its own, where as on nougat devices I had to constantly clear my cache. Conite can correct me there if I'm wrong. Anyways, coming from a Pixel 2 XL, I have noticed absolutely zero difference in day to day performance and speed. So, for all you spec heads out there, you do not need a Snapdragon 845 processor to have a fast device. Period.

    Battery life is about the same as my KEYone. No problems here.

    The speed key is a fantastic addition to the KEY2. I think it's very powerful and efficient to be able to mix the speed key with my never ending amount of keyboard shortcuts I have programmed. It allows me to have a clean home screen without any clutter (I'm looking at you CBK). I still tend to go home before I go to another app, but I'll get used to using the speed key more as time goes on.

    Photo quality has been pretty good for me in direct sunlight. I wouldn't say it's any better than the KEYone. I'm coming from a Pixel 2XL so the camera on the KEY2 should look atrocious, right? Well, not really. The Pixel 2 XL's camera is indeed on another level, but I've realized that I don't really take that many photos. When I need a good photo, the KEY2 will provide it.

    However, I didn't talk about video quality. I'm going to agree with Flossy Carter here. The video quality so far on the KEY2 is "trash." Even in direct sunlight, my videos appear to be blurry, and very jittery. Definitely not a video experience I would expect from a device priced this high. I get that BlackBerry devices aren't media consumption devices, but that's no excuse to provide unacceptable video quality just because you specialize in a different area of the phone. So, the still photos are satisfactory, the videos are unsatisfactory. I'm hoping a lot of this has to do with software, but I'm generally feeling pessimistic.

    Some honorable mentions: button placement on the right side is great. The grooves on the lock button make sense. Call quality and signal strength have been excellent. I haven't really brought this thing into an environment where it should struggle quite yet, however.

    So, should you buy this device? My answer is, it depends. If you're coming from a BB10 device, or KEYone, than absolutely. For you KEYone owners, the performance improvement alone is enough to upgrade. Now add in the improved keyboard and refreshed design, than it's a no brainer. I'm a little bit disappointed with the camera so far in terms of video, but as mentioned before, I don't take many photos. Therefore, I take even fewer videos. Still, I think BlackBerry mobile should have put in some more effort here than just slapping a dual camera setup on there to make you think it's an improvement. I'm not buying it and neither should you. The Pixel 2 still arguably has the best camera on a smartphone a year later thanks to software, not hardware.

    If you're coming from another flagship device, it's still very hard for me to justify buying the KEY2. The biggest issue for me is indeed price. I can understand why BlackBerry Mobile would price this device where it is. But from a consumer's perspective, it's hard for somebody like myself to justify buying this device when I already had a Pixel 2 XL with a better display, better camera, front firing stereo speakers, dust/water resistance, etc. But, I do value my security and privacy more than the average person my age (yes, I'm a millennial). So for that reason, the KEY2 does still have a competitive advantage over other smartphones in my opinion.

    Those of you that NEED a physical keyboard, the KEY2 is a great option, your only option, really. I PREFER a physical keyboard, but I don't necessarily NEED one. I will continue to use the KEY2 for the foreseeable future. I'm hoping software will improve the camera experience.

    Bottom line: if you have the money, buy the KEY2.

    Nice review, thank you.

    I went for a Google Pixel 1 last year, but also bought the KeyOne SE. Went back and forth, ended up with the Pixel.

    Then I bought the Pixel 2 XL back in October 2017 still using it (actually with Android P).

    Got my Key2 approximately 3 weeks ago, installed it and tried it for 2 days. Since then it's back in the drawer.
    In my opinion it's a well built device, a 660 CPU is fine as well, but instead of having a 2 camera setup BB mobile should have invested in camera software. Photos are absolutely nowhere compared to a Pixel (1st Gen).
    All the photos I took with the Key2 are over saturated. Low light performance is imho not better than it was with the KeyOne.

    If you're really into a physical keyboard, then the Key2 might be the right device. If the keyboard really justifies the price - not sure.

    One thing I really love is the Blackberry Hub Suite, it's the perfect solution for me in combination with my Google Pixel 2 XL.
    07-18-18 05:09 PM
  18. JeddClampet's Avatar
    Yeah because your light weight plastic key2 is so premium right..im lol at your delusion about that device lol..best I could do ;-)
    I was under the impression that the Key2 has an aluminum frame. Is that not true?
    07-18-18 05:33 PM
  19. nucks26's Avatar
    I was under the impression that the Key2 has an aluminum frame. Is that not true?
    It does. I believe the border behind the keyboard is plastic.
    07-19-18 01:15 PM
  20. fanisk's Avatar
    Thanks for the helpful review!
    07-19-18 03:49 PM

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