According to John Chen and John Sims at the latest gathering with reporters, BlackBerry is going to keep making high-end, QWERTY phones, with a few touch-screen models. John Chen reiterated his dedication to the handset market, after the misleading news article from Reuters. Unfortunately though, don’t expect to see inexpensive BlackBerrys popping up on U.S shelves before 2016.
BlackBerry is going to keep making high-end, QWERTY phones, with a few touch-screen models as well, but the company isn’t putting all of its financial eggs in the handset basket, CEO John Chen and global enterprise services head John Sims told a reporters’ round-table today.
Fending off perpetual queries about BlackBerry’s struggling phone business, Chen insisted that “I love the handset business, [and] I think we can make the handset business profitable … we’re committed to the handset business.”
With the company’s new tight focus on enterprise sales, the upcoming QWERTY-packing BlackBerry Classic (formerly known as the Q20) will be a key product, he said. BlackBerry Bold loyalists, who he and Sims called out several times during the roundtable, can expect to see more keyboarded phones.
“We’ll concentrate on high-end phones for the enterprise customer,” Chen said. “the majority of our phones will be keyboarded, but there will still be touch screens.”
He gave a personal anecdote to show why his business customers prefer QWERTY phones, which have largely been abandoned by other manufacturers. Just that morning, he said, he had tapped out a message to a colleague on a touch-screen phone which autocorrected “in the car” to “in the cat.”
“I like the QWERTY keyboards a lot more,” he said.
Don’t expect to see inexpensive BlackBerrys popping up on U.S shelves before 2016. While BlackBerry has some room in the consumer space in countries like Indonesia, within the U.S. “the only people we can really interest are the prosumers, at least for the next 2-3 years,” Chen said.