Troubled smartphone maker revealed its new cost-reduced version of its BlackBerry Q10 smartphone, dubbed the Q5, but the news was overshadowed by reports a major overseas carrier is abandoning the platform.
Unlike previous devices, the company is pitching the Q5 as being a useful device, emphasising its “youthful” design along with a new feature called “BlackBerry Story Maker” which the company says will allow users to create a story by “weaving together” photos, songs and video clips.
Built around a dual-core 1.2GHz processor, the new handset features a full physical keyboard, a 3.1-inch touchscreen and 4G-LTE support. It will initially be available in red or black, and has a Canadian release date of August 13.
“The BlackBerry Q5 gives you the best of everything with its cutting-edge BlackBerry 10 functionality and a physical QWERTY keyboard. It is for youthful fans that are passionate, confident and bold, and it makes it easy for them to have fun, create, share and stay connected,” Blackberry chief executive Thorsten Heins said.
However, the news was overshadowed by reports Telefónica Germany has decided to abandon the use of BlackBerrys as staff phones, with employees set to receive Nokia Lumia 925s and 520s instead.
According to WMPower User, the move is part of a global effort by Telefónica to promote Windows Phone in a bid to break the Apple/Android duopoly.
“With the new mobile service control we now use our internal strategic cooperation with Microsoft to save time and high costs,” Mario Buchner from Telefónica Germany says.
“For the next year we are saving more than a quarter million euros due to the elimination of BlackBerry.”