There’s still a lot of love in the room for the Q10. I knew there would be. I KNEW it!
Fundamentally, I am faster at typing on a physical keyboard. There are generations of executives who are the same as me. And ever since the iPhone came of age, we’ve been overlooked. We’ve been told that the Earth is flat from every other manufacturer suffering from Appleitis (that is, the only phone anyone wants to buy comes with a virtual keyboard). Apart from the odd exception, mostly on the ultra-low end, manufacturers have walked away from physical keyboards.
Stuff you, they said. The Earth is flat, they said. All the time, we qwerty-fans have been looking over the horizon wondering if there was any hope.
So profound was the touchscreen-only mantra, it was commercial suicide for BlackBerry to even MENTION the prospect of a physical keyboard device running BlackBerry 10 for a long time. For quite a while the Q10 was absolutely and wholly clouded in rumour-only status. Once the market got comfortable with BlackBerry 10, then the Q10 was confirmed.
Now then, will the Q10 sell by the bucketload? That depends on how you define “bucketload”. There are legions of senior executives quietly cursing their touchscreen devices every hour of the business day. When you just want to reply “y” or “yes” to dozens of emails from subordinates every hour, there is nothing that beats a BlackBerry.
Just… they haven’t been that modern, recently. But that’s all changing with the Q10.
There are millions of low level executives whose status in their companies will currently be insufficient to command a BlackBerry Q10. That’s because it’s a 500 quid device. The BlackBerry Curve 120 quid specials are still incredibly popular in enterprise. Those folk don’t have anywhere to go yet. That’s something BlackBerry will address shortly I’m sure.
This weekend you could buy a Q10 exclusively from the Carphone Warehouse concession store in London’s Selfridges.
Predictably, they sold out super quickly. Just by judging the excitement on Twitter relating to the Q10, I could see there would be demand. There’s no word on how many actual phones were sold. However Carphone Warehouse’s Charles Dunstone is on record today describing their Q10 weekend sales as an “amazing success”. He goes on:
“We have never seen any product sell that amount of volume in such a short space of time – it was incredible.”
This, from one of the country’s biggest sellers of iPhones and Samsungs.
Dunstone’s glowing feedback doesn’t stop there. He continues:
“The new user experience is fantastic and with its trademark BlackBerry keyboard, we think it will appeal to both BlackBerry loyalists and new users alike. We are expecting the nationwide launch of the BlackBerry Q10 to be huge for both BlackBerry and Carphone Warehouse.”
Rob Orr, BlackBerry’s top man in the UK & Ireland is on bullish form:
“This increased support from Carphone Warehouse following the Selfridges sell-out reinforces the strong demand for a high-end BlackBerry 10 smartphone with a full-QWERTY physical keyboard.”
You can pick up a Q10 for £579.99 SIM free from one of Carphone’s 800 stores (or online) from tomorrow. Or, I imagine, you could pop to Selfridges right now and probably pick one up. I’d ring ahead and reserve one though — even though they’ve had more stock, you’re up against a load of other Qwerty fans!