Talk about a makeover.
At the Blackberry 10 event, CEO Thorsten Heins announced today that his company will no longer be called Research in Motion (RIM), and instead just “Blackberry.” The company stock ticker symbol is changing from “RIM” and is now listed as “BBRY” on NASDAQ, and “BB” on TSX.
You can watch Blackberry CMO Frank Boulben in the video above talk about the philosophy behind the new name.
But those aren’t the only changes coming from the Canadian mobile manufacturer. Heins also announced two new devices with all-new Blackberry 10 software: the Blackberry Z10 and the BlackBerry Q10.
There are several cool core features with the new Blackberry 10 software, including a time shift camera, a new keyboard and something called Blackberry Hub that helps manage your conversations. Blackberry 10 offers support for both its own services and also Android apps.
Blackberry also announced video chat for its messaging service, BBM, for the new z10 and users running the Blackberry 10 mobile OS.
The Z10, which looks similar to the iPhone, is already available for pre-order with Verizon, T-Mobile USA, Sprint and AT&T, but the actual device won’t arrive in the U.S. until March due to carrier testing periods. Pricing has been reported to be anywhere from $149 to $199 with a contract.
The Wall Street Journal has a cool 3D interactive look at the Z10.
There are no details on price or release date for the Q10, which has a physical keyboard.
The company has tagged singer Alicia Keys to be the new “Global Creative Director.” Keys will use her Blackberry on tour and create a video from every city she visits.
This is all big news for competitors in the mobile space and most notably Microsoft. The Redmond software giant has been battling RIM (or, well, now Blackberry) for the third spot behind iOS and Android. During the 12-week period ending Dec. 23, 2012, iOS maintained its lead atop the U.S. smartphone rankings with 51.2 percent of market sales. Android was at 44.2 percent, Windows at 2.6 percent and Blackberry at 1.1 percent share of smartphone sales.