Although BlackBerry recently announced that it would reduce the number of smartphones in its product portfolio from six to four, after it said it expected dismal results, and a shift of focus to enterprise, it looks like it’s been working on a new full-touch BlackBerry 10 smartphone, which has made an appearance in a new leak.
BlackBerry focused website, BBin.in, published a picture of what it claims to be a C-series touchscreen BlackBerry smartphone undergoing testing. The website mentions that the purported C-series handset, codenamed Americano, is a low-cost model completing the full-touch device portfolio that already features the BlackBerry Z10, the first BlackBerry 10 smartphone and the recently announced BlackBerry Z30, the large screen BlackBerry 10 phone.
The site mentions that the phone would sport a 4.2-inch LCD touchscreen with a resolution of 720×1280 pixels.
After announcing that it expects to report a net operating loss of between $950 million and $995 million in the quarter ended August 31, due to writedowns and other factors, and announcing 4,500 job cuts, BlackBerry said that it would limit its device portfolio to four devices – two entry-level and two high-end.
It expects to book a $930 million to $960 million writedown in its fiscal second quarter owing to a ballooning stockpile of unsold BlackBerry Z10 devices. It had also said that it would position the Z10 as a more affordable handset after not being able to clear its inventory.
So, it’s not clear if this device will eventually make it to the market.
Meanwhile, the much anticipated release of BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) for Android and iOS hit a roadblock on Saturday, with the company saying it was pausing the first ever rollout of the popular messaging app to third-party platforms. An unreleased Android version of the app that leaked, got circulated quite a bit, with BlackBerry revealing over 1.1 million active users within 8 hours. The company blamed this leaked build for “issues”, which it “attempted to address throughout the day”.
The company did not give an exact date on when BlackBerry Messenger for Android will be available again, but it did say that continued rollout for iOS and a ‘staggered’ rollout for Android will begin “as soon as we are able.” Whether that means a couple of days, weeks, or months, is anyone’s guess.