For most of us in North America, BlackBerry's latest and hottest phone isn't even available yet. The company only unveiled their new all-touch Z10 device last week, but already there are signs that the smartphone (a total redesign for BlackBerry) could be worthy of the hopes the company has been pinning on it.
With the Z10 first released U.K., the response and early sales of the device already has the company beaming with pride. The company's U.K. Managing Director Stephen Bates told TechCrunch this week that some U.K. retailers have sold out within just days of the new BlackBerry's launch:
"The response we’ve seen exceeded all of our launch partners’ expectations. Customers are choosing to buy the BlackBerry Z10 in large numbers [...] In fact some of our partners have told us that they sold out over the weekend in some of their key retail locations."
And though Bates didn't offer any specific figures on those sales, he did add "The partners’ call centres are also flooded with calls, as people phone to ask for more information about the device, and also where and how to buy it.”
Meanwhile, in Canada, where the Z10 isn't available yet but where several carriers have opened up pre-ordering for it, it's been pretty popular too. Canadian carrier Bell is even planning to open their stores early for the Z10's launch, expecting big numbers. And what's more, according to a CIBC analyst, more than half of the pre-orders for the new all-touch BlackBerry are coming from people who are "non-BlackBerry users."
If BlackBerry's really going to parley their shiny new all-touch device into a brand resurrection, that's the kind of response they're going to need, as satisfying existing BlackBerry users simply won't be enough to help them compete with the likes of Apple and Android.
As for the U.S., the BlackBerry Z10 has for a March release date scheduled. And, for the company's sake, we'd hope it meets with at least equal entusiasm as it's seen overseas and with our friends to the North.
We at Pure Mobile think there's a pretty good chance of that, and we're already lining up our BlackBerry accessories and fun gadgets in time to welcome its arrival. In the meantime, we'll be keeping you up to date as we check on BlackBerry's progress in what is definitely a new chapter for the longtime mobile underdog and would-be comeback kid.