To add to BlackBerry’s recent misery, T-Mobile on Wednesday announced it will no longer sell the Waterloo company’s devices in-store. Instead, the wireless carrier will merely offer BlackBerry’s latest lineup only through the carrier’s online store, freeing up shelf space for other, more popular handsets. The news comes after BlackBerry exited the consumer market, effective immediately, and also announced a $950 million loss on unsold BB10 devices.
According to David Carey, executive vice president for corporate services at T-Mobile, keeping BlackBerry devices on shelves was “inefficient” due to tepid consumer reception. Put bluntly, BlackBerry devices have just not sold well among consumers, which was reflected in the company’s most recent performance. The decision to keep selling BlackBerry devices online is meant to cater to T-Mobile’s business customers, who don’t normally buy stuff in-store.
T-Mobile will still have demo units available at its retail stores—you just won’t be able to pick one up right then and there. Reduced support from T-Mobile isn’t the end all, be all, but it definitely highlights what has been a consistent downward spiral for BlackBerry over the past few years. The company gave it a go with devices like the Z10 and Q10, but they were nowhere near as successful as, say, Apple’s most recent iPhones. If this same distribution model is adopted by other big U.S. carriers, it certainly won’t help BlackBerry’s future going forward.