10 phones with terribly designed physical keyboards

We've looked back at our past reviews to uncover 10 phones with terribly designed physical keyboards, so in no particular order, here's what made this list...
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45 Comments

1. bucknassty

Posts: 1208; Member since: Mar 24, 2017

i wish LG would make a WebOS phone

8. palmguy

Posts: 950; Member since: Mar 22, 2011

Paaaaaaaaaaalm!!!!!! R.I.P. :'(

33. Crispin_Gatieza

Posts: 3040; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

Not so fast. Alcatel mentioned late last year there will be Palm phones sometime later this year. An LTE Treo in 2018 would be a dream. I won't hold my breath for a webOS-based device as long as LG owns the rights to the OS.

2. PhoneCritic

Posts: 1337; Member since: Oct 05, 2011

"Palm's first entrance onto this list begins with the Centro, which was released back in the fall of 2017 – just a little after the original iPhone arrived on the scene." Really? Palm has been gone for a while now swallowed up by HP and its os sold to LG for its appliance division. The centro released in 2017 no Wonder it did not sell it looks dated for 2017 and so is the OG iPhone if it was released in 2017. -Lol Sorry had to point that out. Please correct the date.

5. pixelated

Posts: 108; Member since: May 03, 2015

Read 2017 = 2007

13. mcoomes

Posts: 56; Member since: Aug 12, 2014

@PhoneCritic, Nice catch! Professional writers and all that, there should be a higher level of proofing before publishing.

22. worldpeace

Posts: 3049; Member since: Apr 15, 2016

6 hours later, still not fixed.

3. Dr.Phil

Posts: 2209; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

I disagree with two mentions: the BlackBerry Passport and the Palm Pre. I’ve used both and both had nice keyboards to use. The Passport just feels weird at first because of its sheer size but you get used to it after a couple of weeks and becomes comfortable. The Pre, I’m not sure why it was really on this list considering it was one of the better keyboards that Palm made.

10. meanestgenius

Posts: 21019; Member since: May 28, 2014

Agreed. The Passport pkb was definitely a pleasure to use. As a matter of fact, most BlackBerry users prefer the Passport pkb to any recent BlackBerry with a pkb.

11. donnieroc unregistered

I totally miss (and LOVE) my BB Passport......and my Classic......and my Q10.......but miss the Passport most of all. I'm on an iPhone SE, which I like (not love) because I can do stuff with my thumb. The iPhone OS is okay, but I still miss my BlackBerry's!!!!!

27. GreenMan

Posts: 2669; Member since: Nov 09, 2015

When I saw that list, I said to myself: This list must have The Blackberry Passport, and surely it was there! If the spacebar stuck in the middle wasn't bad enough, they also took away the function keys. And jumping up and down from touchscreen to the PKB to actually write something was... Just terrible. This list should've also included The Priv. A tall phone with a big display and the vertical slide out keyboard only made things worse. Too long and too top heavy to use the physical keyboard comfortably in day to day usage. And what else, the keyboard isn't on par with Blackberry PKB standards and lack that tactile feel one might expect from a successor of The Blackberry Bold. Anyhow, RIP PKB. There will always be some people who will praise you like how some praise carburretors in a car. But I've moved on to EFIs and VKBs as they're just.... Far superior! Anyhow, very unbiased, thorough, informative and professionaly written piece of article. Job well done! Brought out some late 2000s nostalgia which I thoroughly enjoyed. Keep them coming! G'Day!

34. Crispin_Gatieza

Posts: 3040; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

Carburetors are still the way to go if you want reliability and more importantly, tuneability. Just because you're old doesn't mean you have to be lazy. I'm old and I still drive manual transmissions and peck away at physical keyboards. Easier does NOT equate with being superior.

4. turboC6

Posts: 89; Member since: Feb 19, 2018

My dream phone is a S9 Active with a slider QWERTY, just like the first Galaxy: the EPIC.. AND, it had a durable build that didn't shatter when dropped, and it included BOTH a removable battery and microSD. Samsung phones continue to get worse with each generation.

6. Jyakotu

Posts: 867; Member since: Dec 12, 2008

Man, this list brings back a lot of memories. I remember being in the era where feature phones ruled the consume mobile landscape and the "smartphones" at the time where more for the business types. What I miss about phones back then was how distinctive and unique they looked. Back then, manufacturers took risks with their designs. Now all we're stuck with are slabs of phones that pretty much all look the same. It's also a shame that the physical keyboard is not as common, because I I honestly preferred typing on a physical keyboard, rather than using virtual keyboards.

7. theviolinist

Posts: 209; Member since: Feb 03, 2018

The LG Neon was hideous

9. darkkjedii

Posts: 30513; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

The OG Droid had the worst PKB to me. No travel whatsoever, I actually loved the one on my Palm Pre...kinda smallish though.

18. toosmoove

Posts: 914; Member since: Sep 28, 2017

The keyboard wasn't bad to me. I just never used it. Only twice. Once when my virtual keyboard froze & to update it to Froyo.

12. Jacksie66 unregistered

Nokia 3650. Worst keyboard ever hands down..

14. odachek

Posts: 100; Member since: Sep 01, 2012

How about doing a "10 Phones With Terribly Designed Notch Display"?

15. redmd

Posts: 1871; Member since: Oct 26, 2011

Can you also make an article on 10 phones with perfectly designed physical keyboards?

32. Crispin_Gatieza

Posts: 3040; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

That would only be a list with 2 entries. Palm Treo and BlackBerry Bold 9900 with the iPaq Glisten getting an honorable mention.

37. Rager722

Posts: 584; Member since: Jan 30, 2013

Blackberry Bold series, Sidekick series except Slide, the HTC windows phone which was on this list which I actually think was a really good keyboard

16. TechDork

Posts: 394; Member since: May 10, 2010

The Sidekick, to this day, still remains to have had one of THE BEST physical qwerty keyboards on any device. Hands down.

25. shnibz

Posts: 501; Member since: Sep 18, 2011

Mine would be the HTC Arrive. That keyboard was SO nice and he way the screen hinged up to a slight angle instead if being totally flat just made the keyboard feel that much better too. Just led your hands to a very comfortable position.

26. TechDork

Posts: 394; Member since: May 10, 2010

That's how the Sidekick's keyboard was. Well, for me at least. The way it was designed just fit in your hand it felt comfortable to type on. The buttons weren't too big or too small. Ugh, I swear I'll leave iPhone if the Sidekick was resurrected lol.

38. Rager722

Posts: 584; Member since: Jan 30, 2013

Idk Blackberry Bold can give sidekick a run for it's money. The sidekick keyboards were too hard for me.

17. toosmoove

Posts: 914; Member since: Sep 28, 2017

Swap Palm Pixie with the Pre & this list is 100% accurate.

20. SyCo87

Posts: 269; Member since: Sep 19, 2013

It was the wild west in the mobile industry from 2006-2012. I kind of miss it.

21. AustinPaul

Posts: 148; Member since: Dec 13, 2011

Still pains me that the Pre never turned the corner in developing it and getting it sorted out. It was so fun when I first got it. So much potential. Very easy to carry. Very creaky though. PKB made my hands cramp.

23. Popop971

Posts: 39; Member since: Nov 24, 2013

The keyboard on my Blackberry Passport SE was very easy to use and very usefull (all those keyboard shortcuts in the web browser were fantastic). I only hope we'll have a Blackberry Passport 2, but with a 4:3 screen aspect ratio. Or maybe one with a 3:2 screen aspect ratio and a horizontal slider keyboard.

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