RIM announces new BlackBerry 10 Qwerty developer prototype

News Paul Briden 12:27, 29 Nov 2012

A new Qwerty keyboard-equipped BlackBerry 10 prototype is being issued to developers

RIM has revealed a new BlackBerry 10 prototype handset which it will issue to developers to encourage app and content creation.

Unlike previous developer models, the new handset will feature a traditional Qwerty keyboard as well as a smaller capacitive touch display.

Earlier developer handsets were touchscreen only as BlackBerry 10 has been designed with touch control at the centre.

It’s no secret that RIM had planned all along to create both touch-only smartphones and combined Qwerty and touchscreen handsets for its new platform.

But with the release schedule for Q1 2013 on track, the company has clearly decided that now is the time to push forward with a device to allow developers to test their apps in a more conventional format.

RIM is relying on BlackBerry 10 to save the company as brand popularity, market share, sales and revenue have all taken a downward turn in recent years.

Analysts widely agree that the manufacturer has failed to keep step with innovations made by rival companies and their respective platforms.

BlackBerry 10 will introduce a completely new interface, with an ever-present mail, messaging and notifications centre always accessible with a simple gesture. Multitasking is also expected to be well-implemented.

The company has plans to release smartphones running the platform in the first quarter of 2013 and recent reports indicate it’s on track to meet its targets.

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