The Wall Street Journal's Walt Mossberg called the Z10 a "work in progress" while CIO.com reviewer and blogger Al Sacco praised many features, such as a quick-reaction touchscreen and the ability to "flick" corrected words from the virtual keyboard onto the display area of the touchscreen.
The Z10 has a 4.2-in. Display with 1280 x 768 resolution. The Q10 has a 3.1-in. display and a 35-key physical qwerty keyboard. The Q10 is not as lengthy as the Z10 and is slightly lighter, but otherwise almost the same size. Overall, the Z10 is 5.1 x 2.6 x 0.35 inches and weighs 4.8 ounces, and the Q10 is 4.7 x 2.6 x 0.4 inches and weighs 4.9 ounces.
Both devices run a dual-core 1.5 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. Both have 2GB RAM and 16GB internal storage with a microSD slot for up to 32 GB for the Z10 and 64 GB for the Q10.
Also, both devices have an 8 megapixel rear camera and a 2 megapixel from facing camera.
Both smartphones have NFC capabilities for mobile payments and file sharing, and will support Wi-Fi and 4G LTE or HSPA+.
BlackBerry didn't specify battery life for the Q10, but said the talk time on the Z10 is 10 hours on a 3G network. Heins said both devices have removable batteries so a power user can carry a second battery to insert once the first is drained.
BlackBerry didn't specify U.S. pricing plans, and said that carriers will announce their prices for the devices later. In Canada, the Z10 will ship on Feb. 5 for $149.99 and a three-year contract.
The first shipments of the Z10 will be in the UK starting Thursday. BlackBerry devices are more popular in the UK and most of Europe than in the U.S. The BlackBerry Messenger messaging service is also heavily used in Europe and the U.K.
Outside of the U.S., the name will be written as Z10 but unlike in the U.S. it is pronounced Zed10, according to BlackBerry officials.
Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen, or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed . His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Read more about mobile/wireless in Computerworld's Mobile/Wireless Topic Center.