RIM has taken their upcoming BlackBerry 10 OS on the road with their BlackBerry 10 Jam developer sessions. They are expected to launch the new OS, along with a couple new handsets, in Q1 2013. The first will be an all touchscreen device, then a full QWERTY handset will follow.
Now, according to CEO Thorsten Heins, they are about to embark on another kind of roadshow, this time to carriers. Apparently BlackBerry 10 is in “the final stages of testing” and starting next week will go on a five-week roadshow where they’ll show off two “beta” versions of their new handsets. The Wall Street Journal stated in their report that “one device will be an all touch-screen phone similar in design to the iPhone. The other will have both a physical keyboard—a favorite feature for many die-hard BlackBerry users—and a touch screen.” Nothing groundbreaking there, but another report in AllThingsD suggests that the “all-touch interface nearly identical to a prototype shown at a RIM developers conference in Orlando in May.”
Heins did give a bit more insight into the design, declaring that the battery will be removable. This decision was “made to appeal to heavy smartphone users who frequently run out of battery,” which also puts into question if the new BB10 devices can last a day on a single charge.
Over the past number of months there has been leaked roadmaps that suggested various upcoming BB10 handsets, names such as the London, Lisbon, Milan, and Nevada have surfaced. However, Heins said they’ll eventually have a total of 6 BlackBerry 10 smartphones – three with all-touchscreen displays, and three with physical keyboards.
“We’re near the finishing line,” Heins said.