Research In Motion Ltd. launched two BlackBerry 10 smartphones at press events around the world Wednesday, banking on the highly anticipated line of devices to spark a turnaround for the Waterloo-based company, which has struggled in recent years to keep up with Apple and Android.
CEO Thorsten Heins kicked off simultaneous live events in New York, Toronto, London, Paris, Dubai, Johannesburg, Jakarta and Delhi, unveiling RIM’s two new devices, the BlackBerry Z10 and Q10. The former is a touchscreen device, the latter sports a full Qwerty keyboard that has become iconic of BlackBerry devices.
In Canada, the touchscreen BlackBerry Z10 will be available on Feb. 5. Pricing will vary by carrier partner, but it will retail for around $149.99 on a three-year contract. The Q10 will be available in April, RIM says, but pricing and availability information on that version wasn’t immediately provided.
RIM plans to roll out the Z10 to U.S. carriers sometime in March with an expected price range of between $149.99 and $199.99 on a contract. AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile will all carry the device, with the Q10 coming later on in the year.
Despite the positive reception given by tech journalists, analysts, and carriers at the launch events, RIM shares fell more than 11% on the TSX, ending the trading session at $13.86 a share.