BlackBerry reckons it'll target developing markets with more mass market devices than the BlackBerry Z10 and Q10 we've seen so far, but says it simply isn't going to change itself into a budget phone maker for the sake of extra unit sales.
So says BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins, making clear in a Q&A conference that while BlackBerry may regularly be compared to Nokia in similarly targeting third ecosystem glory, becoming a real entry-level operator isn't part of its plan to get there.
Heins was commenting specifically on India, where the BlackBerry Z10 goes SIM-free for £535 after launching on February 26, more than 10 times the price of entry-level Asian-made rivals.
Heins said the key to success was to "understand where you are playing and resist being talked into segments that you know will not serve your purpose and will not result in shareholder value”.
“You will not see us getting into the 50, 60-buck phone segment. This is not BlackBerry."
But cheaper products are definitely coming later this year. It remains to be seen how much more affordable (if any) the QWERTY-based BlackBerry Q10 will be when it goes on sale, but it and the Z10 will definitely spawn more affordable offspring along the same lines.
“You will see new products being launched this year based on BlackBerry 10, all fully LTE-capable, the whole 10 yards, that are more geared towards those price bands where people need to be,” Heins said.