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BlackBerry has one more keyboard phone up its sleeve

Though BlackBerry stopped making its own phones, it does promise an upcoming handset with a physical keyboard.

The last BlackBerry phone to have a keyboard was the Priv.
Nate Ralph/CNET

After launching the DTEK50 in August, otherwise known as its last "official device," former phone maker BlackBerry said it will switch gears to fully concentrate on security and software.

It will license its name, however, so that other companies can build and sell phones under its brand, according to Bloomberg (in fact, the DTEK50 itself was designed by Alcatel). In addition, BlackBerry CEO John Chen said that in keeping with this strategy, a "BlackBerry" phone with a keyboard will launch.

Though no further details were given, this should be good news to BlackBerry fans. In its heydey, the company's handsets were known for two things: its secure software and its physical QWERTY keyboards, which made typing easier and more comfortable.

The last keyboard-cladded phone was the Priv, launched back in November 2015. The device was also BlackBerry's first foray into Google's Android operating system. According to one AT&T executive, however, the Priv struggled with sales, due to BlackBerry loyalists who found the transition to Android difficult.

BlackBerry declined a request for comment.