RIP: The BlackBerry Classic and its iconic keyboard is dead

The BlackBerry Classic was the last phone to offer users the original BlackBerry physical keyboard experience.

BlackBerry isn’t giving up on phones with physical keyboards, but the company does appear to be backing off the concept.

The company recently announced that it will no longer make the BlackBerry Classic. The handset was first launched in late 2014 as a replacement for the BlackBerry Bold.

This may be the end of the Classic handset but it isn't the end of physical keyboards for BlackBerry. The company still produces the Passport, which features a smaller physical keyboard to create more space for the phone’s touchscreen. There's also the Android-based BlackBerry Priv, which has a slide-out keyboard.

What is going away is BlackBerry’s iconic physical keyboard design—though the Priv's keyboard is its spiritual successor in some ways. The company said it is discontinuing the Classic to make way for new devices.

“The Classic has long surpassed the average lifespan for a smartphone in today’s market. We are ready for this change so we can give our customers something better,” COO and general manager for devices Ralph Pini said in a recent blog post.

It’s possible that BlackBerry could launch a new phone with the classic keyboard, but Pini’s post strongly implies we won’t see a replacement in its refreshed lineup.

Why this matters: BlackBerry devices have been declining in usage ever since the introduction of the iPhone nearly ten years ago. The apparent end of BlackBerry’s long-popular keyboard is something of a milestone in the story of the modern smartphone. BlackBerry, meanwhile, hopes to buoy its sagging user base with Android phones.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Blackberry

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Ian Paul

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles


GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy


First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni


For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell


The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi


The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott


My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?