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BlackBerry unveils second, cheaper, Android device

[TORONTO] BlackBerry Ltd unveiled an Android-based handset on Tuesday, a device that combines Alphabet Inc's popular software and broad app catalog with the company's security and productivity features at a lower price.

The faded smartphone pioneer is hoping the DTEK50 will sell in greater numbers than the Priv, its first phone using the Android operating system, which Chief Executive John Chen has said suffered because of its high price.

The company said the touchscreen-only DTEK50 will cost US$299 in the United States, Canada and across Europe.

At its November launch the Priv, which featured a slide out keyboard, cost US$699 without a contract in the United States and C$899 without a contract in Canada.

The company cut the price of the Priv in the United States and across Europe in April, while earlier this month it said it would cease production of its Classic handset, which uses its own BlackBerry 10 operating system.

A third Android device is expected from BlackBerry in coming months.