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RIM pins hopes on new BlackBerry 10 smartphones

Expected to hit the market during the first quarter of next year

Image Credit: Pankaj Sharma/Gulf News
One of the stalls at the Gitex Technology Week being held at Dubai World Trade Centre.
Gulf News

Dubai: Research In Motion (RIM) is hoping that its new BlackBerry 10 smartphones, which are expected to hit the market during the first quarter of next year, will turn the company’s failing fortunes around and get them back into the big game in the mobile arena, a top official at RIM said.

“We will be launching six models based on the BB10 and the first model will be a full-touch smartphone with a virtual keyboard,” Robert Bose, Regional Managing Director, Africa and Middle East at RIM, said.

“We are in a very good position among corporates and with cash in the bank. We believe it will be a game changer in the smartphone wars and we are very optimistic about it,” he said.

RIM has added two million subscriptions in the last quarter taking its total to 80 million subscribers globally.

“We believe we will see the transition from mobile personnel communication to mobile personnel computing with BB10,” he said.

The Canadian company said it will be evaluating market by market for launching new handsets running on Blackberry 7.1.

BB10 is the answer to the headache, giving people a “new mobile flow that allows them to move quickly through all of their tasks.”

“What we’re trying to do is streamline [the multitasking] process, break down the silos that exist between a lot of those applications … and introduce a new flow to the whole user experience paradigm,” he added.

“That’s something we’re confident is going to set us apart.”

“It’s all about trying to put information that you’re going to need at your fingertips so you don’t have to go looking for it,” he said.

According to a demo shown at its stand, there is no back button in BB10, because all the screens flow so intuitively you won’t need one Instead, a series of swipes and pulls will let the user navigate the OS upon which RIM has pinned the survival of the BlackBerry phone family.

“I don’t think we’re coming late to the market, per se,” he said. “The smartphone category as a whole is really just in its infancy. There’s still a tremendous amount of smartphone growth both in the region and around the world.”

“Growth” is an interesting word, especially when you consider that the inverse is happening to RIM’s mobile subscriber base.

Bose believes RIM is on track to become the third eco system globally in next year.