No cheap BlackBerries: Heins

If you’re waiting for BlackBerry to come out with a cheap handset to reclaim marketshare and appeal to the masses, particularly in the developing world, well, you can keep waiting.

According to a report from Bloomberg, Thorsten Heins, the CEO of the Waterloo, Ont.-based smartphone maker, told a conference this week that, while it is working on less expensive devices for emerging markets, it won’t be looking to lock horns with the ultra-low cost Asian manufacturers.

“Understand where you are playing and resist being talked into segments that you know will not serve your purpose and will not result in shareholder value,” Heins told the conference. “You will not see us getting into the 50-, 60-buck phone segment. This is not BlackBerry.”

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BlackBerry found success in the developing world with the Curve, which was both priced at a lower price point than other handsets and was less demanding on mobile networks, making it a good fit for regions such as India.

Blackberry’s Z10 launched in late January to positive reviews and, while a firm launch date has not yet been set, the Q10 with hard QWERTY keyboard is expected to hit the market some time next month.

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Jeff Jedras
Jeff Jedras
Jeff Jedras is a technology journalist with IT World Canada and a member of the IT Business team. He began his career in technology journalism in the late 1990s, covering the Ottawa technology sector for Silicon Valley North and the Ottawa Business Journal. He later covered the technology scene in Vancouver before joining IT World Canada in Toronto in 2005, covering enterprise IT for ComputerWorld Canada and the channel for Computer Dealer News. His writing has also appeared in the Vancouver Sun & the Ottawa Citizen.

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