Despite our best estimates, BlackBerry has survived in the mobile world far longer than expected –which is fortunate for fans of the brand. We heard recently that there are new smartphones headed our way, including the unusual looking Passport (with a large, boxy style, and full QWERTY keyboard). It wasn’t until now though, that we learned exactly when we can expect them to hit the marketplace. It appears that Passport (“Windermere”) and the Porsche Design P’9983 (“Khan”) should be ready to purchase in the third quarter of 2014 –which may even mean in September.
For those who can’t get enough of the old-style design, the Classic smartphone will be out with the BlackBerry 10.3.1 update in the 4th quarter of this year.
The roadmap also makes it clear which devices aren’t going to survive, with everything but the Z3 and 9720 headed to the graveyard by the end of the year.
A third-quarter 2014 launch date may be very wise, with Apple and Motorola both slated to deliver new hardware the same month; waiting much longer may have persuaded BlackBerry loyalists to switch in the meantime.