The BlackBerry Q10 was supposed to be the cream of the crop of the BlackBerry 10 smartphones. It offered the same operating system, a responsive touch screen and the same internal hardware as the Z10 and BlackBerry’s iconic and beloved keyboard. Unfortunately, the story didn’t unfold as BlackBerry had hoped and, according to a recent report from The Wall Street Journal, there’s little to no consumer demand for the device.
The report cites retailers from around the country who said customers simply aren’t showing up to buy the device. One retailer even noted that, among the few who actually did buy the phone, several came back to return it. “We thought there would be a pocket of die-hard BlackBerry enthusiasts waiting to upgrade, but it seems they have already moved on,” one cell phone retailer told The Wall Street Journal. It’s not that surprising: BlackBerry delivered the Q10 to the market late — Sprint’s only starting to sell its model, though says there’s demand from enterprise customers— its ecosystem isn’t as robust as iOS or Android, and it’s priced as high as more powerful smartphones. Meanwhile, the Z10’s price has already dropped, which is usually an indicator that sales are poor and retailers are trying to rid stale inventory.
BlackBerry hasn’t publicly disclosed sales figures for the Z10 and Q10, but only sold 6.8 million BlackBerry devices total during the fiscal first quarter of 2014. The company has formed a special committee on its board that will consider a full or partial sale.