Fear no more: Beginners guide to mastering the BlackBerry Key2's keyboard (2023)

It’s easy to dismiss a phone with a physical keyboard as “old,” but don’t. The BlackBerry Key2 is as modern as smartphones get, and the keyboard does a whole lot more than simply put words on the screen. However, swapping from a virtual keyboard on a full touchscreen phone — which the majority of us use today — is not only daunting, but actually quite a challenge.


  • Learn to hold your phone
  • Slow down
  • Swipe it
  • Hold keys, and use the Sym shortcut
  • Emoji, clipboard, and voice
  • Alternative languages
  • Practice makes perfect

Don’t panic, and don’t let it put you off. Practice on your Key2makes perfect. Here is our quick guide to learning how to type like a pro on the BlackBerry Key2, with some helpful hints to make swapping from a virtual keyboard to a physical one more pleasant than you may fear.

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If you want more general tips, not just those related to the act of typing, we have those too. Plus, if you’re still considering the Key2, then this may help make up your mind.


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Learn to hold your phone

Sounds silly, doesn’t it; but you may need to retrain your muscles the first few times you hold the BlackBerry Key2. While the phone is better weighted than the KeyOne, it’s still different than holding an iPhone or another Android phone. You’re going to have to experiment. Move it around in your hand, shift the position of your fingers, and your hand will gradually get used to its new position.

Pro tip: If it’s really proving difficult, stick a Popsocket on the back. We gave it a try because the adjustment was initially quite hard, and the stick-on grip helps you balance the phone without too much strain on your fingers. It definitely made a difference and stopped any fears of losing a grip on our shiny new Key2 as well. Think of it like BlackBerry training wheels.

Slow down

Fear no more: Beginners guide to mastering the BlackBerry Key2's keyboard (3)

You have been typing on a virtual keyboard for years and relying on autocorrect probably more than you think. Going from this to actually pressing physical keys is jarring, and here is something you won’t want to hear: You’re going to make mistakes and it’s going to be frustrating.

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The key (sorry) to improving is to slow down. You’re typing on a new keyboard, likely one you haven’t used before, and relearning how to type quickly is part of the process. Stop your fingers dancing over the keys, like you did on the virtual keyboard and make slower, more precise movements. Speed will come over time, and it will arrive with improved accuracy as a special bonus.

Swipe it

Predictive text on the BlackBerry Key2 (and the KeyOne) is fast, intelligent, and very powerful, all because of a single swipe. The Key2’s keyboard is capacitive so it operates like a touchscreen, and you can swipe corrected words from the list provided right into your conversation.

It’s accurate, and you can “type” responses almost solely by swiping the words the Key2 predicts, rather than actually typing. To do it, you run your thumb up the keyboard under the predicted word you want to insert. Learn to use this early on, and it’ll minimize any frustration you’re feeling about the time it takes to type out a message.

Pro tip: Swiping is quick, but if your finger is close enough, you can tap those predicted words too. If you do, look out for words with three dots underneath. Tap and hold those words to see other words that would potentially fit. For example, if “The” is predicted, it’ll also show words like, “Is,” “For,” “And,” and “Your.”

You’ll find words that are related to the sentence you’re typing too. If you type “Test,” then “Results,” may appear in the same menu. Again, it’s all about regaining speed after swapping from a virtual keyboard.

Hold keys, and use the Sym shortcut

Most of the time, the only special characters we use in messages are capital letters, punctuation, and things like a hashtag or currency symbol. You can use the Alt key to access special characters already assigned to each key and shown in grey, or the Shift key to get capital letters.

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Don’t do this. Learning shortcuts and fast actions is an important part of BlackBerry ownership, and one of the first things to get to grips with is the alternative way to get all these keys without pressing many other keys first.

Hold down each key to get the capital letter, which is much faster than finding the shift key or accidentally pressing the Alt key in your haste. To get the symbols, press the Sym key and a virtual keyboard appears on the screen, showing all the available symbols. If you can’t see the one you want, press Sym again and more will show up. Tap the one you want. Press the Sym button a third time and the virtual keyboard disappears.

Pro tip: Looking for special characters used in languages other than English? You’ll find them with a long press on the appropriate key. Hold down the “E” key to find “é,” for example.

Emoji, clipboard, and voice

There are times when only an emoji will do; but where are they hidden? There is a comprehensive menu with all this and more, which is accessed by tapping the three horizontal lines on the left of the predictive words that appear on the screen.

Tap it, and the first option from the left, which looks like a microphone, activates voice input. Move along towards the right and the second is for emoji, while the central button is to return to the keyboard. The first icon to the right from here brings up a cursor control for the screen, and the final button is for the clipboard.

Pro tip: Sometimes the Key2’s virtual keyboard will show up over the screen content, even when you want to type on the physical key. To ensure this doesn’t happen, go to Settings > Languages & Input, and then Current Keyboard. Tap the slider next to Show Virtual Keyboard to turn it off.

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Alternative languages

Some of you will need access to a second keyboard when typing, and these can be added and accessed easily on your Key2. You can also use either BlackBerry’s alternate keyboards, or Google’s keyboards.

Here’s how to get BlackBerry’s alternate language keyboards. Go to Settings > Language & Inputand tapLanguages. Tap Add a Language, and scroll through the list until you find the one you want.

To select it during typing, hold down the spacebar and pick the language you want. We selected Japanese, and provided you download the dictionary when prompted, the predictive text works in the same way as it does in any other language.

If you install a second Google keyboard, it can also be used. Again, go to Settings > Language & Input, and activate the keyboard under Keyboard Settings. To select it when typing, hold down the Alt key and at the same time press the Enter key. Each subsequent press of the Enter key will cycle through the available keyboards.

Practice makes perfect

That is our introductory tips on how to get started with your BlackBerry Key2 keyboard, which has been built with the classic BlackBerry Bold 9900 in mind. These tips should speed up the process of swapping to a physical keyboard after years of experience on a virtual keyboard. Now, it’s time to practice, as that is the only way you will improve here. Push past the frustration too, it doesn’t last long, and you’ll be well on your way to physical keyboard nirvana.

We’ll be back with advanced keyboard tips soon, so get practicing.

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How do I change the keyboard on my BlackBerry? ›

Switch languages or keyboards
  1. On the virtual keyboard, swipe right on the spacebar.
  2. On the physical keyboard, press the. ...
  3. On either keyboard, press and hold the. ...
  4. At the bottom of the screen, tap.

Does BlackBerry Key2 have touch screen? ›

The Key2 measures 151.4 x 71.8 x 8.5 mm, and features a 4.5" 3:2 aspect ratio multi-touch touchscreen.

How do I use keyboard settings? ›

Set keyboard options

On your Android phone or tablet, open any app that you can type with, like Gmail or Keep. Tap where you can enter text. Choose which settings to turn on, like Glide typing, Text correction, and Voice typing.

How do I find hidden apps on my BlackBerry KEY2? ›

From the list of options, tap on App appearance. This will load a list of apps, from here you can scroll and find the icons with an eye beside them to indicate they are hidden or simply tap on the eye in the top right to unhide all icons instantly. Once you find the icon you have hidden, tap on the eye next to it.

Can I still use my BlackBerry KEY2? ›

Those who own newer BlackBerry phones such as the Keyone, KEY2 and KEY2 LE can continue to use their devices as they run Android and not legacy BlackBerry software.

Where is the BlackBerry menu button? ›

This handy menu appears when you swipe down from the top of your home screen. You can customize this menu too—choose what settings appear, as well as their positions —so you can quickly get to the settings that are most important to you.

How do I reset my keyboard style? ›

Reset a Keyboard on a Windows Computer

Click the Windows logo key + R simultaneously, and type “devmgmt. msc,” or open Windows Settings and find the Device Manager in the control panel. 2. Click “Keyboards” and select the one that needs to be reset.

How do I change the keyboard key Behaviour? ›

To reassign a key

Connect the keyboard that you want to configure. Select the Start button, and then select Microsoft Mouse and Keyboard Center. From the displayed list of key names, select the key that you want to reassign. In the command list of the key that you want to reassign, select a command.

How do I change my keyboard typing style? ›

From the Home screen, tap Apps > Settings > Input language & Input.
To change input language and the keyboard layout
  1. Tap and hold .
  2. Tap Input language & type.
  3. Tap each language to select as one of input languages.
  4. Tap to change the keyboard layout.
  5. Tap QWERTY keyboard, Phone keyboard, Handwriting, or Shape writer.

How good is a BlackBerry Key 2? ›

The BlackBerry Key2 LE is an excellent phone if productivity is your main concern. In addition to being the only midrange phone on the market with a QWERTY keyboard, it's a better value than its more expensive sibling.

How old is the BlackBerry KEY2? ›

BlackBerry KEY2 mobile was launched in June 2018.

What is the difference between KEY2 and KEY2 LE? ›

The BlackBerry KEY2 LE is the KEY2's more affordable cousin. It basically feels the same to use as the KEY2 - the only real difference in practice is the lack of capacitive touch.

How do you master a keyboard? ›

5 Tips for Improving Your Typing Speed & Accuracy
  1. 1.) Use the correct starting position. When practicing your typing skills, it's important to use proper hand placement. ...
  2. 2.) Don't look down your hands. ...
  3. 3.) Maintain good posture. ...
  4. 4.) Find a comfortable position for your hands. ...
  5. 5.) Practice!

What are the 20 shortcut keys? ›

Windows keyboard shortcuts
  • Copy: Ctrl + C.
  • Cut: Ctrl + X.
  • Paste: Ctrl + V.
  • Maximize Window: F11 or Windows logo key + Up arrow.
  • Open Task View: Windows logo key + Tab.
  • Display and hide the desktop: Windows logo key + D.
  • Switch between open apps: Alt + Tab.
  • Open the Quick Link menu: Windows logo key + X.

Which should you not do when setting up your keyboard? ›

Position the mouse and keyboard at about elbow height

Do not place your mouse and keyboard on different levels, as you'll have to keep moving your arm up and down. Small, repetitive movements like these put you at greater risk of musculoskeletal injury.

What key do I press to enable keyboard? ›

The fastest way to open the on-screen keyboard in Windows 10 is the shortcut [Windows] + [Ctrl] + [O]. This way, the on-screen keyboard can be activated immediately if a physical keyboard is available or intact.

What are the 3 types of keyboard layout? ›

Changing the Layout of the Keys

For languages using the Latin alphabet, there are three main key layouts: QWERTY, QWERTZ, and AZERTY. Several countries have created their own variations based on these keyboards.

How do I download apps on my Blackberry key2? ›

Press the main menu icon.
  1. Find "Play Store" Press the main menu icon. Press Play Store.
  2. Find app. Press the search field. Key in the name or subject of the required app and press enter.
  3. Install app. Press the required app. ...
  4. Return to the home screen. Press the Home key to return to the home screen.

Where are all the hidden apps? ›

Find Hidden Apps Through Your Settings

First, tap on your Settings icon and choose Apps from the menu. If things look different on your device, just go for the tab that deals with your phone's apps. From there, you should have access to a See all apps option. Tap it and you'll see all your available apps.

Do BlackBerry phones still work in 2023? ›

On January 4, 2022, BlackBerry decommissioned the infrastructure and services used by our legacy software and phone operating systems.

Which carriers support BlackBerry KEY2? ›

BlackBerry KEY2 LE Unlocked Android Smartphone (AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon), 64GB, 13MP Rear Dual Camera, Android 8.1 Oreo (U.S. Warranty) – Champagne. Brief content visible, double tap to read full content. Full content visible, double tap to read brief content. Brief content visible, double tap to read full content.

What are the dots on BlackBerry? ›

Septoria leaf spot (Sphaerulina westendorpii, formerly Septoria rubi) is a fungal disease of blackberry and black raspberry. Leaf spots are small, circular, and have whitish gray centers with purple borders; fruiting bodies are visible in centers of spots.

Where can I download BlackBerry apps? ›

mobile app from the BlackBerry World app store (for BlackBerry devices), complete the following steps:
  • On your BlackBerry device, tap .
  • In the. Search. ...
  • Tap. Apps. ...
  • To search by name, press. Search App World. ...
  • Type. BlackBerry AtHoc. ...
  • Tap. BlackBerry AtHoc. ...
  • Tap. Download. ...
  • Follow the onscreen instructions to complete the installation.

Why is my keyboard typing wrong keys? ›

Check the Language Settings

Sometimes, the wrong language settings may be responsible for the issue of keyboard typing wrong letters/symbols/characters. So, you should make sure you are using the correct language settings. Do as follows: In Windows 10/11, open Control Panel via the search bar and view it by category.

How do I unlock my keyboard settings? ›

Step 1: To unlock the keyboard in Windows 10, you can go to Settings > Ease of Access. Step 2: Scroll down to Keyboard and then turn off Sticky Keys and Filter Keys.

Why is my keyboard not matching keys? ›

Press "NumLock" or press "FN" + "NumLock" keys to make sure that it is disabled. Try typing again to see if your keys are fixed. If this doesn't fix your problem, you may have the wrong language selected. Switch between your active keyboard layouts.

How do you control keyboard keys? ›

Press Enter to move the cursor to the beginning of the next line. In a dialog box, press Enter to select the highlighted button. Press the Spacebar to move the cursor one space forward. Press Backspace to delete the character before the cursor, or the selected text.

What is my keyboard layout? ›

How to determine your keyboard layout. Either on the language bar or on the taskbar, open the list of input methods and see if the US keyboard item – which is for QWERTY keyboards – or the United States-Dvorak item is selected.

What phone is similar to BlackBerry KEY2? ›

BlackBerry KEY2
  • BlackBerry KEY2 LE.
  • BlackBerry Keyone.
  • BlackBerry Priv.
  • Apple iPhone 6s.
  • Google Pixel 6a.
  • Google Pixel 3.
  • Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra.
  • BlackBerry Passport.

Is BlackBerry obsolete? ›

Blackberry users said goodbye to the iconic device on January 4, 2022. The phone's legacy software was decommissioned, meaning all classic Blackberry phones can no longer be used. The Blackberry, at its peak, was a favorite of top execs, but was phased out in favor of touchscreen smartphones.

What is unique about BlackBerry phones? ›

Over the years, BlackBerry smartphones have had two major advantages. They used a special server technology that sat between the phone and email systems to provide better performance. Because of the way they worked, they also offered a higher level of security than other systems.

What year did BlackBerry fail? ›

At its peak in September 2011, there were 85 million BlackBerry subscribers worldwide. However, BlackBerry lost its dominant position in the market due to the success of the Android and iOS platforms; its numbers had fallen to 23 million in March 2016, a decline of almost three-quarters.

Is BlackBerry Key 2 3g or 4G? ›

BlackBerry KEY2 Black Unlocked GSM Android Smartphone 4G LTE, 64GB.

Why is BlackBerry still so expensive? ›

You're paying for the operating system as well as the hardware. Unlike most Android OEMs, who do minor changes to what Google has already developed, BlackBerry developed their operating systems from scratch (before their Android line-up). They're premium products.

What is the difference between key1 and Key2? ›

Here are the differences between them, and how the Key2 improves over the KeyOne.
BlackBerry Key2BlackBerry KeyOne
ProcessorQualcomm Snapdragon 660Qualcomm Snapdragon 625
CameraDual 12MP, 8MP front12MP rear, 8MP front
VideoUp to 4K at 30 frames per second (fps)2,160p at 30fps
19 more rows
Jun 21, 2018

Is BlackBerry Key2 good for gaming? ›

Processor, memory and storage

The 660 is a power efficient mid-range processor and is used here for two reasons – the Key2 is not designed to be used for high-end gaming and is also supposed to last well over a day on a single charge.

How do I get my keyboard keypad to work? ›

The quickest way to enable it is to press the Num Lock key. Usually, keyboards come with a small light for special keys such as Num Lock or Caps Lock. If the light is on, your number pad is enabled.

How do I get my keyboard to type? ›

How to Fix a Keyboard That's Locked
  1. Restart your computer. ...
  2. Turn off Filter Keys. ...
  3. Try your keyboard with a different computer. ...
  4. If using a wireless keyboard, replace the batteries. ...
  5. Clean your keyboard. ...
  6. Check your keyboard for physical damage. ...
  7. Check your keyboard connection. ...
  8. Update or reinstall the device drivers.
Jun 18, 2022

Where is the Blackberry menu button? ›

This handy menu appears when you swipe down from the top of your home screen. You can customize this menu too—choose what settings appear, as well as their positions —so you can quickly get to the settings that are most important to you.

Why my keypad keys are not working? ›

An outdated or corrupt driver could be the reason your keyboard isn't working. Step 1: Right-click on Start and select Device Manager. Step 2: Expand Keyboards. Step 3: Right-click on the affected keyboard and select Update driver.

Why won't my keys work on my keyboard? ›

If one key, like your A key, isn't working, then it's probably a bad switch or a stuck keycap. The best way to fix it when one key isn't working is to focus on that key. Pop off the keycap and look for debris. If you see anything, clean it out with canned air.

Why is it hard to type on my keyboard? ›

There is probably some dirt or dust inside the key switch that makes the connection unreliable. Pressing the longer or harder will make the electrical connection happen compared to a quick or light touch where the key press is not recognised when the electrical contacts don't touch.

How do I learn to type correctly? ›

How to Type: 5 Tips for Faster Typing
  1. Learn to touch type. If you don't know how to touch type, this is where you need to start. ...
  2. Aim for accuracy rather than speed. ...
  3. Practice typing exercises regularly. ...
  4. Minimize your physical effort. ...
  5. Learn the entire keyboard.

How do I activate my Android keyboard? ›

To add it back:
  1. On your Android phone or tablet, open the Settings app. .
  2. Tap System. Languages and input.
  3. Tap Virtual keyboard. Manage keyboards.
  4. Turn on Gboard.

What is PIN code on BlackBerry? ›

Finding your PIN

Select Options. Select Status, and you will then see an 8-digit alphanumeric ID labeled "PIN:".


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