Newspaper article The Canadian Press

BlackBerry Exec Says the Company Is Innovating Faster Than Rivals Apple, Google

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

BlackBerry Exec Says the Company Is Innovating Faster Than Rivals Apple, Google

Article excerpt

BlackBerry says it's innovating faster than rivals

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TORONTO - BlackBerry is confident that it's innovating faster than its rivals and will convince skeptical mobile customers to return to the once dominant brand, a company executive said in an interview Wednesday.

It's perhaps not surprising that Sebastien Marineau-Mes, BlackBerry's senior vice president of software, would be feeling optimistic.

Technology blogs and newspapers released the first wave of reviews for BlackBerry's forthcoming keyboard-equipped Q10 smartphone late Tuesday night and most were positive. The phone, due out May 1 in Canada, likely won't sway buyers who have no interest in a keyboard, but reviewers noted that the still-significant contingent of BlackBerry lovers will be very happy with the Q10.

Meanwhile, newly released reviews for Samsung's new flagship device, the Galaxy S4, were lukewarm. And on Tuesday, Apple hinted that it may not release a new version of its iPhone until the fall, opening a window of opportunity for BlackBerry to woo consumers with its Q10 and touchscreen Z10.

Marineau-Mes said the new BlackBerry 10 operating system will feel unique and fresh to users who might be finding that the once break-neck pace of innovation in the mobile space seems to be slowing.

"Apple's iOS and Android have been in the market for a number of years and their velocity and the pace of their innovation is slowing down, whereas we get to come to market with a whole new operating system that reimagines the mobile experience, so it's a great opportunity for us," said Marineau-Mes.

Despite the Q10's mostly positive reviews, many harped on the meagre selection of apps available on the BlackBerry platform. Marineau-Mes insisted that problem would be temporary.

"I think if you look at the app selection it's been growing very rapidly. I think people forget that we've grown 30,000 or 40,000 apps since the launch of Z10 (earlier this year), we're at well over 100,000 apps and it's continuing to accelerate. …

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