The launch of devices running BlackBerry 10 (BB10) is unlikely till March 2013, according to Jefferies analyst Peter Misek. Quoting him a Forbes report adds, “We had hoped for a January launch but now see a March launch as more likely. That would mean no sales of the next generation phones in the February quarter. Also, our checks point to a tough November quarter, with replenishment rates decreasing as channel partners are cautious on holding RIM inventory. We think the business uncertainty means parties are unlikely to acquire or license from RIM until BB10 launches.”
The report further quotes Misek as saying that there is little chance of anyone buying RIM in the near future. He also does not expect to hear anything about licensing of the new OS before the launch.
Unlikely until March next year?
Misek adds, “We still believe a third ecosystem [in addition to iOS and Android] will emerge, but the probability of BB10 filling the role is wholly dependent on whether RIM can convince Samsung, Huawei, and ZTE to license. Baidu, Huawei, and others are pursuing their own operating systems. We also see Win 8 as somewhat of a threat but conflicting reviews, less-than-stellar developer feedback, and a desire by Microsoft to make hardware directly make Win 8.”
RIM has been very secretive about its new crop of devices that will run on its new operating system BB OS 10, but a specifications sheet of one of its upcoming smartphones, an L-series touchscreen device dubbed Laguna was leaked recently. The device is supposedly making its way to Verizon, and the specs sheet looks like it is the CDMA version of the BlackBerry London.
Laguna, according to the leaked specsheet, will run on a Qualcomm Snapdragon MSM8960 processor, and will have 1GB of RAM. The phone will be 130mm tall, 65mm wide and 9mm in depth, and will sport a 4.2-inch capacitive touchscreen at a resolution of 1280 x 768 pixels with a very impressive pixel density of 335ppi and a 16:9 aspect ratio. Aside from standard features such as Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and GPS, the device will purportedly have NFC and will be powered by an 1800mAh removable battery.
At the Canadian company’s mobile app developers' conference held in San Jose, California recently, a glimpse of the upcoming OS was shared. One of the most obvious misses on this one is that of the physical QWERTY keyboard — it has been replaced by a touchscreen. Ironically, BlackBerry phones were known for their QWERTY keyboards, among other things. It offers auto-complete support in multiple languages. According to reports, if a user types a sentence in English, but uses a Japanese word, then the auto-complete function will complete the word just as it would in English.
Reports at the time had indicated that BB10 will feature a touchscreen keyboard, and the apps will show up in a grid format.
BlackBerry 10 has Flow – a term given to a new feature on the OS, using which users can go back and forth between apps. As per reports, the new OS will have an App World store with its own app ecosystem. TechHive shares that according to the company, developers will be able to port their Android apps into the BB10 store. Also included are apps for Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Foursquare, and a Contacts app that syncs with the user’s social networks. There is still no clarity about the BlackBerry devices that will support the new OS.