Despite an abysmal overall share of the smartphone market, BlackBerry will plod on with the launch of its latest software and devices early next year.
RIM confirmed yesterday that it would launch its latest phones and software on 30 January 2013.
The company is betting its future on the new line of phones and operating system it’s called BlackBerry 10.
Wells Fargo analyst Jennifer Fritzsche wrote in a note to clients:
While it is clearly an uphill battle for RIM given the recent launch of the iPhone 5 device and the aggressive marketing dollars being pushed toward Windows 8, we view it as a modest positive that a date is now officially set for the launch of the new BB10 devices.
RIM has said it plans initially to roll-out touchscreen devices. Phones with the mini QWERTY keyboards that many long-time BlackBerry users rave about will come a few weeks later, while lower-end versions of both devices will be launched later in the year. The company did not say when the devices will be available in stores. That will be announced at the event.
RIM has promised that applications have now become a key focus, and this has seen the company’s share price rally slightly recently, but it is still down 90% from its peak in 2008.
While the main draw card for many wanting or having a BlackBerry has been the unlimited data that it provides, this is not necessarily what will keep the smartphone alive anymore.
One need only look at what Nashua Mobile offers in the way of data now. With effect from last week:
Nashua Mobile has extended its fixed-cost mobile services Xtreme Data and Xtreme Data Premium to selected Samsung Android handsets. The packages will be offered to users with the Samsung Ace Advance, Samsung Galaxy Y, Samsung Galaxy Pocket and the Samsung Galaxy Note II. The flat rate pricing starts at R59 per month which allows users unlimited web browsing, e-mail and social networking as enjoyed by BlackBerry subscribers. For R139, users have access to the downloading of games and unlimited YouTube viewing on the devices.
Sure, users will experience a throttled download speed once they reach a certain threshold, but at least they will know what they are paying.
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