As we had reported a while back, BlackBerry had announced a partnership with manufacturer Foxconn in which they will be working together to create handsets. Their partnership will focus more towards emerging markets where price is the priority, and not so much specs, but exactly how cheap are we talking about? Well speaking in a recent interview with the folks at CNET, BlackBerry’s CEO, John Chen, revealed that the phones produced as part of their partnership with Foxconn are expected to be priced below $200, which is pretty affordable. Chen also revealed that the resulting device will be a touchscreen phone which corroborates earlier rumors in which it was suggested that BlackBerry and Foxconn’s efforts would not sport the Canadian company’s iconic keyboard.
Cheng went on to state that they will be giving Foxconn the reins when it comes to emerging markets, but reassured BlackBerry fans that they are working on newer devices in which they will be taking charge. “For emerging markets, BlackBerry will let Foxconn take a bigger role […] But we will do the next set of cool phones.” This is an interesting strategy by BlackBerry, who for the most part has been struggling for a while now. The company has attempted to break into the high-end market with phones like the BlackBerry Z10 and the Z30, and while both phones were relatively well-received, they were not the commercial success that BlackBerry wanted. Will BlackBerry fare better with emerging markets? We guess we will have to wait and see.