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BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) Sales Of Keyboard-Equipped Q10 Have Been Dreary

Written by on August 29, 2013

When the CEO of BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY), Thorsten Heins was asked about his decision to begin selling the company’s new keyboard-equipped smartphone months after new touch-screen device, he replied that it happened because BlackBerry could afford to wait as it “owned” the keyboard phone market.

According to carrier executives and retailers in the U.S. and Canada, the sales of the keyboard-equipped Q10 have been dreary. Chris Jourdan, who operates and owns 16 Wireless Zone stores in the Midwestern U.S, which sell Verizon Wireless products, said that customers have not allured for the Q10 as expected. His stores ordered only a few of the devices per location and “the sold handful were given back”. He further said they have faced no demand for the Q10 virtually and finally given back most of them to their equipment vendor.

In another demonstration of the matter, BlackBerry’s new devices are not selling significantly, phone dealers have not posted the flood of old BlackBerrys that typically comes when updated devices are launched. Both the touch-screen Q10 and Z10 launches were “nonevents” from a trade-in outlook, said Jeff Trachsel, chief marketing officer at NextWorth, which buys used electronics.

In February, the Z10 came in Canada and U.K., and became available in U.S in the following month. Until May, the keyboard-equipped Q10 has not hit the Canadian and some international markets. Earlier this summer, the Q10 started selling at Verizon Communications Inc (NYSE:VZ) and AT&T Inc (NYSE:T) and is launching on Sprint this Friday. According to a person familiar with the matter, BlackBerry has begun offering employees the opportunity to buy up to 10 Z10s devices for less than $100 each. BlackBerry said its employees are offered its products at special rates.  AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) shares were up 1.25% in premarket, Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) shares were up 7.35% in premaket.

According to analysts and carrier executives, BlackBerry’s decision to form a special committee earlier this month, in order to find out strategic alternatives including a possible sale of the company, could give its sales a pause as people will be reluctant to buy a phone if they aren’t certain the company will be around. BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) shares were up 2.70% to $10.30 in last trading session.

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