Leaked roadmap shows off BlackBerry's new iPad competitor, phablet

Posted:
in iPad edited January 2014
Canadian manufacturer BlackBerry appears to be readying another go at the tablet sector, as an image purporting to be a leaked product roadmap shows a potential iPad competitor slated for a late 2013 release.


The supposed product roadmap appeared Friday in a tweet from @BB10Leaks (via TechnoBuffalo) and appears to show BlackBerry's forthcoming products through the second quarter of 2014. In addition to the already released Z10 and its hardware QWERTY keyboard sporting counterpart, the Q10, the roadmap shows a tablet, a phablet, and a phablet-esque device with a hardware QWERTY keyboard of its own.

The iPad competitor appears to be named the B10. The roadmap gives no details on its dimensions or specifications, but it looks to be a large tablet in the vein of Google's Nexus 10 and Apple's full-size iPads. Should the device materialize, it would represent BlackBerry's second attempt at breaking into the tablet segment.

The Canadian manufacturer previously released a 7-inch PlayBook tablet, meant to provide enterprise-minded customers with a more portable alternative to Apple's iPad, which dominated the tablet segment then as it does now. Poor software implementation and developer support, though, doomed the PlayBook to sluggish sales even as Apple's tablet moved to greater heights. Eventually, then-RIM's inventory of unsold PlayBook units caused the company to take a $485 million charge.

With the launch of BlackBerry 10, though, the manufacturer has seen encouraging signs. BlackBerry's most recent financial figures revealed one million Z10's shipped since the device's launch in February. That, in combination with drastic cost reductions, led to BlackBerry's first profitable quarter in some time.

A new tablet would help flesh out the range of devices BlackBerry offers, making it a more capable alternative for customers looking outside of Apple's iOS and Google's Android. Speaking earlier in March, BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins said that the company would have to do something "really substantial and meaningful... [and] profitable as well," if it were to enter the tablet space again.

"I think the profit pool is very, very thin," Heins told the Australian Financial Review. "Kudos to Apple, I think they really managed to own that space, so it doesn't make sense for me to just take this head on. I need to figure out, for my enterprise customers, for my consumers, for my BB10 audience, what can I do that provides them a mobile computing experience in the form factor of a tablet, which goes beyond just the puristic tablet experience."

Should the leaked roadmap prove accurate, BlackBerry's tablet will see release some time in either the third or fourth quarter of 2013. It would be followed shortly thereafter by a large-screened BlackBerry 10 device, apparently dubbed the U10. That device ? likely a "phablet" in the vein of Samsung's Galaxy Note II ? may be the rumored Aristo device that surfaced late last year. Following the phablet's release, another large-screened model would follow quickly thereafter, this one sporting a hardware QWERTY keyboard much like BlackBerry's forthcoming Q10.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 34
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 31,191member
    Hahahahahahahaaaaaaaaaaaaahahahahahaha!
  • Reply 2 of 34
    freerangefreerange Posts: 1,589member


    Where is the common sense analsis in this "reporting"? First, it was 1,000,000 Z10's shipped, not sold. It's called "filling the sales channel". Secondly, the profits came from "drastic cost reductions", not sales. Their sales actually continued its decline, and they continued to lose customers.

  • Reply 3 of 34
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,680member


    What makes this tablet any different from the other 659 "iPad competitors" that came before it, all of which have failed? image


     


    Apparently, the threshold for being named an "iPad competitor" is quite low. 


     


    We've all seen this story before and most of us already know how it's going to play out. image

  • Reply 4 of 34
    nagrommenagromme Posts: 2,834member
    I do like those designs. I like the thick white edging around the black bezels--striking and unique, and complemented by thick white stripes on the keyboard models. And the UI looks to be entirely white--something I've not seen before. I'm intrigued!
  • Reply 5 of 34
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,680member


    As for Blackberry, things aren't looking too good.


     


    So they managed to sell a few of their new phones to the few Blackberry customers that are still left, so what? They actually lost more customers than they gained new ones, so their customer base is on the decline, even with their new phone.


     


    And then there's the iPhone using, Blackberry "creative director", Alicia Keys, what a great decision. image

  • Reply 6 of 34


    Perfect marketing campaign for it:


    AMATEUR HOUR IS OVER AGAIN

  • Reply 7 of 34


    Some of you talk as if you think Heins should just throw in the towel.


     


    I think the guy has shown some brains in the way he is handling the company. He doesn't laugh at the iPhone, he doesn't state that amateur hour is over. He shows a great deal of respect for Apple and he states that he is working on a solution to make his platform more viable for customers. Sounds like a good plan to me.


     


    Nowhere have I seen Heins making fun of any of his competitors.


     


    It might not work but I have to give kudos to the guy for giving it his best to figure it out. I think he's doing a better job than Nokia [or Microsoft for that matter].

     

  • Reply 8 of 34
    joshajosha Posts: 901member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post



    Hahahahahahahaaaaaaaaaaaaahahahahahaha!




    This BB Playbook owner isn't laughing, well not while I wait for the PB software to receive needed updates.


    Oh well even the new Blackberry phone needs SW updates, like a Web Browser bookmark mgr.

  • Reply 9 of 34
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,154member


    I'm sure Apple must be terrified. I'm thinking they should just cash it all in and call it quits while they're ahead. They had a good run. 

  • Reply 10 of 34
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,295member
    slurpy wrote: »
    I'm sure Apple must be terrified. I'm thinking they should just cash it all in and call it quits while they're ahead. They had a good run. 

    Exactly, after all as certain RIM senior management pointed out a while back, ... what do Apple know about smart phones?
  • Reply 11 of 34
    crowleycrowley Posts: 5,932member


    I found the BB Playbook to be a pretty decent device.  Sure, there were shortcomings, with the email, the ecosystem and probably other stuff, but the basics of a good tablet OS were there, and the hardware seemed very competent and well built.  Good luck to them, I have no problem with the iPad having more competition, and it seems like a resurgent RIM might be able to do it better than Microsoft or Google.  Stress on the might, since I hoped the same for the Plabook v1, and the HP Touchpad.

  • Reply 12 of 34
    crowley wrote: »
    Sure, there were shortcomings, with the email, the ecosystem and probably other stuff...

    Those are pretty important things... right? :p

    We'll see what Blackberry does with their next round of tablets... but I'm not expecting any miracles.
  • Reply 13 of 34

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post





    Exactly, after all as certain RIM senior management pointed out a while back, ... what do Apple know about smart phones?




    That's like using quotes from Spindler after Jobs took over Apple.


     


    Frick and Frack are history.

  • Reply 14 of 34


    For small fart here and there, I am not switching from any apple products and its ecosystem to any other company. Keep on trying I am sticking with Apple for years and years to come!

  • Reply 15 of 34
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by island hermit View Post


    Some of you talk as if you think Heins should just throw in the towel.


     


    I think the guy has shown some brains in the way he is handling the company. He doesn't laugh at the iPhone, he doesn't state that amateur hour is over. He shows a great deal of respect for Apple and he states that he is working on a solution to make his platform more viable for customers. Sounds like a good plan to me.


     


    Nowhere have I seen Heins making fun of any of his competitors.


     


    It might not work but I have to give kudos to the guy for giving it his best to figure it out. I think he's doing a better job than Nokia [or Microsoft for that matter].

     

     

    I agree. Though I like Apple products -- at times people here can be reflexively critical of anything daring to compete with Apple. It sounds shrill and immature. I'm glad you are pointing out that this is just healthy competition; and it's good that Blackberry is trying to innovate -- hopefully they are successful with that as it enriches the marketplace, rather than a lawsuit turf war that Android and Samsung have created.
  • Reply 16 of 34
    timbittimbit Posts: 331member
    Blackberry will do well in the smartphone arena as it is one of the few smartphones with a full physical keyboard. Although not for me, some still prefer physical ones over touch ones. This will be BB's strong suit. As for the tablet, I think they should stay out. Apple owns the tablet field and I'm not sure BB has anything new to offer. I hope BB can really push past MS and Google in the phone market and become what it used to be
  • Reply 17 of 34
    Some of you talk as if you think Heins should just throw in the towel.

    I think the guy has shown some brains in the way he is handling the company. He doesn't laugh at the iPhone, he doesn't state that amateur hour is over. He shows a great deal of respect for Apple and he states that he is working on a solution to make his platform more viable for customers. Sounds like a good plan to me.

    Nowhere have I seen Heins making fun of any of his competitors.

    It might not work but I have to give kudos to the guy for giving it his best to figure it out. I think he's doing a better job than Nokia [or Microsoft for that matter].

     

    Well said.

    The biggest problem is that Google Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire changed the tablet industry from 1990s PC style industry to 2009 netbook PC industry in less than 2 years. The race to the bottom in pricing, where ecosystem owners rule and OEMs wither or die.

    Google and Amazon are selling tablets at cost (maybe less than cost, or a little more than cost) and making their profits from services (ecosystems). How many people are buying (for profit) tablets from Asus, Acer, Lenovo, Samsung, HTC? Didn't HTC drop out of the android tablet market bc it wasn't worth their time/money?

    The tablet market isn't the phone market, and Heins knows that. He's smart enough to consider that his company can't risk the Samsung style flood the market with options product line. I think Blackberry will become more like Apple, focusing on a smaller product line, unlike their past.

    I hope Blackberry is successful for the sake of competition, and for the good people of Waterloo.
  • Reply 18 of 34
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member


    Shouldn't they be focussing on the new phone?

  • Reply 19 of 34
    crysisftwcrysisftw Posts: 128member
    I won't joke. I was recently gifted a BlackBerry. It is the dumbest phone of all time. Why I wonder, have they come this far?
  • Reply 20 of 34
    "Phablet"? Blackberry is phucked.
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