BlackBerry said on Thursday it has no immediate plans to offer its
BlackBerry 10 line in Japan; the company's move suggests that it sees
little chance of Japan emerging as a major market for its new devices at
The company, which changed its name from Research In
Motion following the launch of the line last week, is attempting to win
back consumers with its new touch-screen device dubbed the Z10 and a
model called the Q10, with a more traditional keyboard.
surged nearly 6 percent on Thursday, on reports that the Z10 was
enjoying strong sales in the markets where it is already available.
models, powered by its new BlackBerry 10 operating system, are
considered the company's best hope of reviving its tarnished image as a
The Z10 has already gone on sale in the
United Kingdom and Canada, and is expected to go on sale in the United
States in mid-March. The Q10 is expected to go on sale globally in
Japan's Nikkei business daily reported on Thursday that the
company however, plans to stop selling its older smartphones in Japan
due to poor sales.
A spokeswoman for BlackBerry said, "Japan is
not a major market for BlackBerry, and we have no plans to launch
BlackBerry 10 devices there at this time."
The company said it
plans to continue to provide support for Blackberry customers in Japan
and confirmed that it will have Japanese language support on its new
operating system in the future.
BlackBerry's market share in Japan has shrunk to 0.3 percent from 5 percent, according to the Nikkei report.
BlackBerry has done well in developing markets, it has hemorrhaged
customers in developed markets such as Japan and the United States. Its
fourth-quarter North American market share fell to 2 percent from more
than 40 percent three years ago.
The company hopes that its new
devices will help it claw back market share lost in recent years to
rivals such as Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics.
shares ended the day up 5.7 percent at $16.96 on the Nasdaq, while its
Toronto-listed shares rose 5.8 percent to close at C$16.91.
© Thomson Reuters 2013
BlackBerry 10 Launch: In pictures