Whatever happened to vertical QWERTY sliders?

Whatever happened to vertical QWERTY sliders?

For one reason or another, handset makers have abandoned the vertical QWERTY sliders. Why that’s the case is beyond me – these kind of devices potentially offer best of both worlds, including a large touchscreen and full QWERTY keyboard. On the downside, this form factor does make phones slightly bulkier but I believe the benefits are greater as you get to type much faster.

Some of the earlier devices with this form factor include BlackBerry Torch, Palm Pre and Dell Venue Pro, all of which (unfortunately) failed to attract big gathering. However, we would say the form factor doesn’t have anything to do with it. Rather, BlackBerry Torch was running on an old platform and it was slow, while the Palm Pre and Dell Venue Pro shipped with webOS and Windows Phone, which at the time had emerging eco-systems with insignificant number of apps to choose from.

Today, however, the situation is different and we’re hoping that some smart handset maker will take its chances with a vertical QWERTY slider. To make it a success, such a device needs to have solid specs sheet with an HD screen (at least 720p) with a diagonal of at least 4 inches, fast processor, great camera and so on. I would say that Facebook could be one of the companies pushing for this kind of smartphone, hoping that users will benefit from the QWERTY keyboard to chat with their buddies while on the go.

Anyway, just thought I should write about this, hoping that some handset maker’s representative will read these words and actually do something about it. What about you – would you be willing to grab a vertical QWERTY slider presuming it has great specs sheet?

  • slyremarks

    Better to simply evolve to a more versatile to concept then to be adapted and comfortable with a process.

    Conclusion its not going to happen.

  • D_Foster


  • James

    I’ve been waiting for a vertical slider for eons…I was hoping the Venue Pro was a resurgence of the form factor, but it was not picked up by anyone. 🙁

  • cdgoin

    Couldn’t agree more. I have a Dell Venue Pro.. and its problem wasn’t even the OS. IT was the fact they were ONLY sold on the Dell website.. and they had a bad launch with a few major bugs to boot. If they had a good launch and actually sold them at T-mobile (and later AT&T) stores, it would have been a different result. I am personally waiting for a new torch from BB. I hope they put a good camera on it though. The Q10 camera is pretty bad.. especially compared to the Nokia line of phones.

  • DellVenueProUser

    Got the Dell Venue Pro 2 years ago, still going strong. I’m typing this comment on it, albeit using the virtual keyboard 🙂 I do use the qwerty when I need to and will miss not having one on my next device. Benefits are speedy typing and more screen real-estate for reading text while typing

    What happened, Dell?

    Would like to thank Dell though this great device, and would love to hear from Dell about why they stopped supporting it almost immediately following launch.

  • Mike Logemann

    I so completely agree! I had a BlackBerry slider & loved the design. The operating system was the only problem. Hardware was fantastic. I would be in line to buy a upper end Android vertical slider.

  • eddie

    Completely agree. I still have a palm pre 3 and I love it. This is such an untapped market. I really hope one of these phones companies put out a phone like this preferably with android

  • Mikhail

    Would be happy to shell one thousand dollars RIGHT NOW or at any future moment for android-compatible smartphone similar to blackberry torch in design – would be happy to get it even with “low-end” specs similar to sony-ericsson xperia pro (which is still my primary phone). Won’t even mind waiting for custom ROM and all related hussle to enable android on bb torch-like device – AFAIK not possible neither for actual bb torch nor for palm pre 3 (there was an attempt for pre 3 but a lot of functions including simple phone calls still don’t work). Same goes for 5-row hardware qwerty’s. Damn, even software 5-row keyboards are near extinct! thanks to authors of “hacker’s keyboard” though

    • Spencer

      Look up the Motorola XT300 Spice.
      It’s low end, but not a bad piece of hardware.
      It’s in desperate need of a developer to do some custom ROMs though.

  • John K

    I have a Nokia E7, which is a great phone and I love, running Symbian Belle, but really want Nokia to build an E7 type Lumia WP8 phone, as I would be first in line to purchase one.

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