BlackBerry 10 launches with comeback hopes

The new OS brings a much needed refresh to the BlackBerry platform

By , IDG News Service |  Mobile & Wireless, BlackBerry, blackberry 10

The launch handset lineup will consist of two phones: the BlackBerry Z10 and the Q10. The Z10 is a touchscreen handset and the Q10 features the familiar BlackBerry QWERTY keyboard.

On the Z10, users will type on a virtual keyboard that features an innovative interface. As words are spelled out, the system predicts likely words and they appear above keys on the keyboard. Users can select words with a flicking motion that sends them toward the text being typed. Because the predicted words appear above keys, users don't have to move their thumbs to a separate area of the keyboard and can type more quickly.

The Z10 will launch first in the U.K., where it will go on sale on Thursday through EE, O2, Vodafone and other carriers. It will launch on Feb. 5 in Canada and in March in the U.S. through AT&T, Verizon, Sprint and T-Mobile.

Many countries won't see the phones quite so soon. BlackBerry said it plans to complete testing with 110 carriers around the world in February ahead of local launches.

Launch details for the Q10 were not immediately announced.

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