BlackBerry 10 'Qwerty' fans must wait
Sep 28, 2012 / 3:48 pm
"Hardcore BlackBerry lovers" might have to wait up to two months after the release of the BlackBerry 10 touchscreen device to get their hands on one with a physical keyboard, a strategic play by Research In Motion that analysts say reflects what customers want.
RIM chief executive Thorsten Heins, who had already indicated a touchscreen model would launch first, said Friday that the keyboard version, known in the tech community as Qwerty, will come about "30 to 60" days later.
Heins said the company needs to gain market share in the touch phone segment, especially to address a trend in which employers are allowing staff to use their preferred smartphone for work.
"People... and enterprises love a full touch device, and, you know, we had to make a choice and finally we decided really to bring both versions to market very, very close to each other," he said in an interview with MSNBC.
"The BlackBerry lovers, the hardcore BlackBerry lovers, they love this physical keyboard ... so make no mistake we are fully, fully committed to Qwerty."
The physical keyboard is popular often with BlackBerry business users, and the company, in its advertising, has positioned that as an advantage over Apple and Android phones that rely solely on touchscreens.
The new detail about the closely watched BB10 launch, slated for some time in the first-quarter of next year, comes as RIM stock shot up 8.1 per cent following a much less disappointing than expected second-quarter earnings report.
Analysts were surprised and encouraged by the BlackBerry-maker's ability to shore up its cash reserves and subscriber base during the quarter, some had been projecting a steady decline in subscribers as the company honed in on becoming leaner by slashing costs.
But analysts also signalled that the company's ability to survive pales in comparison to the outcome of the much-delayed launch of BlackBerry 10, and whether that gets them back in the game with tech-savvy consumers.
RIM's smartphones running the new operating system will have to be able to compete with iPhones and Android devices, telecom analyst Anil Doradla said Friday.
"What happens in North America, specifically the U.S., plays out in the rest of the world in the course of a couple of years," said Doradla of Chicago-based William Blair & Co.
RIM is releasing a touchscreen phone first because that's what consumers want, Doradla said.
"They're trying their best to get back in the consumer game and touch is the name of the game."
"Are they at a point where one can believe they are going to be meaningfully competitive in this hyper-competitive Apple, Samsung world? We just don't know," Doradla said. "This company has let us down so many times in the past."
Read more Business News
|QHR Technologies Inc||1.17||-0.01|
|Anavex Life Sciences||0.375||+0.046|
|Copper Mountain Mining||1.55||+0.02|
Big Picture Bank earnings and upbeat economic news highlight an active week In contrast with last week’s quieter, U.S. holiday-shortened week, the first week of December was a comparatively acti...
This column is the last of three, for how to prove your personal injury claim. It is the piece de resistance of the trilogy, the Chuck Norris piece – the final say! As mentioned in the first two...
The bank manager just phoned and asked for full and immediate repayment of the line of credit because the latest, (and they were late!), financial statements showed continuing losses and falling sales...
- Lululemon sees tough holiday season as it works to rebuild trust with customers
- TSX slightly lower: retail data, U.S. budget deal add to Fed tapering concerns
- Exploration company to lose drilling licence near Newfoundland's Gros Morne park
- Loonie down, Bank of Canada governor says low rates needed to head off deflation
- Empire says healthier food offering and Safeway deal will keep it competitive
- Americans make more big purchases this holiday season, but traditional stores see fewer sales
- Merrill Lynch paying $131.8M to settle SEC charges of misleading investors on mortgage bonds
- Beastie Boys fire back with lawsuit over Northern California toy company song parody
- Ontario Lottery looking to expand in Niagara Falls with entertainment centre
- U.S. Republican party's internal tensions erupt into the open
- Supreme Court gives green light to class suit against fund managers
- Winter travel costs on the rise as Transat also contemplates currency surcharge