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BlackBerry 'Mercury' comeback phone confirmed for late February

The date is set. On February 25, we'll see what the newest keyboard-equipped BlackBerry brings to the table.

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Jessica Dolcourt Senior Director, Commerce & Content Operations
Jessica Dolcourt is a passionate content strategist and veteran leader of CNET coverage. As Senior Director of Commerce & Content Operations, she leads a number of teams, including Commerce, How-To and Performance Optimization. Her CNET career began in 2006, testing desktop and mobile software for Download.com and CNET, including the first iPhone and Android apps and operating systems. She continued to review, report on and write a wide range of commentary and analysis on all things phones, with an emphasis on iPhone and Samsung. Jessica was one of the first people in the world to test, review and report on foldable phones and 5G wireless speeds. Jessica began leading CNET's How-To section for tips and FAQs in 2019, guiding coverage of topics ranging from personal finance to phones and home. She holds an MA with Distinction from the University of Warwick (UK).
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Jessica Dolcourt
2 min read

BlackBerry fans, the time has come for the launch of the next chapter of BlackBerry phones: the device known as "Mercury." BlackBerry Mobile used a tweet to announce February 25 as the announcement date, which puts it right at the beginning of Mobile World Congress, a huge tech show that overtakes Barcelona each year.

We got a good look at a prefinal version of the Mercury earlier this month, and some time typing on its physical keyboard, a BlackBerry hallmark from way back.

With the Mercury, the BlackBerry brand faces an uphill battle as all but its most stalwart fans have turned to other phones. Now it's up to Tcl, a Chinese company that licenses the BlackBerry name -- and also operates the Alcatel brand -- to make and distribute the BlackBerry hardware.

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Watch this: Psst! We saw BlackBerry's next keyboard phone


BlackBerry itself remains as a software entity that works with TCL to add its distinct custom layer over Android software.

Right now, TCL has ambition plans to build out a BlackBerry portfolio of devices that span the high-end to more affordable, entry-level phone, and the Mercury (we'll soon find out its official name) is the tip of the spear.

The brand isn't alone in its ambitions to reignite some glory from its heyday. Nokia Mobile (another confusing name-licensing situation operated by HMD) will also use the giant Mobile World Congress show to globally announce its Nokia 6, a phone currently sold only in China.

But that brand is taking a different tack. Although the first Nokia phone of this generation will also run on Android, the Nokia 6 is very much a low-cost phone, a foil to the BlackBerry Mercury's high-end ambitions. It'll be interesting to see which of the two resonates better with buyers when they both hit store shelves.

Read next: Comeback kids: Nokia goes low while BlackBerry aims high

BlackBerry 'Mercury' brings back the QWERTY keyboard

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