Last month, RIM provided us a bit of an update on its progress towards launching BlackBerry 10, saying that carriers would begin testing new BB10 devices sometime in October, with plans for an early 2013 launch. Since then, we’ve heard rumors that BlackBerry 10 might be facing delays. Now CEO Thorsten Heins is speaking back up, confirming that a Q1 release is still on track, and talking some more about the carrier testing currently underway.
While it’s good to hear that a Q1 launch is still in RIM’s plans, that could represent a significant delay from what we had originally been expecting, and the first hardware may be landing closer to March; for the moment, timing more precise than “Q1” just isn’t available.
What’s good to hear is that the carrier testing has begun as planned, and Heins claims that over 50 carriers worldwide have already begun evaluating BB10 launch hardware. That’s going to mean both full-touch as well as hardware keyboard devices, and recent leaks have been making it look that there could be quite an assortment of BB10 hardware on the horizon, including some with very competitive specs.