John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

BlackBerry Says Z10 Appeals to Platform Newbies

RIM_I_Want_To_BelieveCharting BlackBerry’s performance as it mounts its long-promised comeback is no easy feat. The company’s new Z10 smartphone has been available in some markets for nearly a month now, and it has yet to announce any hard sales figures, saying only that early sales are much better than some numbers it declines to quantify. But this week, BlackBerry did provide some additional data that offers a bit of insight into how the Z10 is faring at market.

Speaking at an industry event this week, Richard Piasentin, managing director of BlackBerry’s U.S. business, said a lot of early Z10 buyers are new to BlackBerry. According to the company’s preliminary sales data, about half of the Z10s it has sold in Canada so far have been purchased by customers who have never owned a BlackBerry. Evidently, a similar scenario is playing out in the U.K., where about a third of Z10 sales are going to BlackBerry newbies.

Now, as BlackBerry notes, this is preliminary data, and should be treated as such. But even so, it’s encouraging to hear that the Z10’s appeal might extend beyond BlackBerry loyalists. The company’s comeback hinges not just on convincing existing customers to stick with BlackBerry, but proving itself a viable alternative to iOS and Android devices.

“We are seeing strong interest from consumers currently on other platforms, but can’t comment further on specifics,” BlackBerry spokeswoman Amy McDowell told AllThingsD. “While of course our loyal customer base is upgrading to BlackBerry 10, initial reports from Canada and the UK are encouraging, and data suggests a significant percentage of users are coming to us from iOS and Android too.”

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There’s a lot of attention and PR around Marissa, but their product lineup just kind of blows.

— Om Malik on Bloomberg TV, talking about Yahoo, the September issue of Vogue Magazine, and our overdependence on Google