The BlackBerry Z10 was officially launched on January 30th. It immediately became available for customers in UK and Canada, while gradually releasing in a host of other markets as well. The Z10’s performance in the U.S. is termed as the yardstick by which the success or failure of this device, and BlackBerry 10, will be gauged. According to Jeff Johnston of Detwiler Fenton & Co.’s, his checks indicate pre-order volume of the Z10 is light and below expectations in the U.S. AT&T started accepting Z10 pre-orders on March 12 and Verizon on March 14.
This definitely does not mean that there’s a possibility of Z10 sales not picking up at all. The device will be available at AT&T and Verizon retail outlets from March 22nd and 26th respectively. Surely there won’t be any massive lines outside their stores like there are for a new iPhone, but things just might work out for the Z10 at a much more modest scale. Jeff believes that BlackBerry has an awareness problem in the U.S. and that it is not doing as much as it should to get the word out to prospective customers. He adds that they’ve done a good job with the OS but there’s a steep learning curve that might irk newcomers, but does say that once they grow accustomed to the new OS, they’ll probably end up liking it.
If BlackBerry starts burning cash on big advertising campaigns, they’ll be taking a huge risk. With market share already depleting, the company isn’t exactly in a position to burn through millions of dollars if sales won’t even break even. The company is spending on advertising nonetheless, they ran an ad during the Super Bowl. BlackBerry definitely knows that they have to change the mindset about their platform and their devices in the U.S., the question remains, are they doing enough? What do you think?
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