BlackBerry's Q10 smartphone sales are faring worse than expected, according to a new report citing people familiar with the supply chain.
Many hoped the keyboard-enabled Q10 would bring back the die-hard faithful BlackBerry fans, despite the delay in releasing the device following the launch of the touch-screen Z10 in late January. But a report from The Wall Street Journal suggests that it hasn't, and isn't likely to.
In discussions with one phone retailer, who sells handsets across 16 stores in the U.S. midwest, he saw "virtually no demand" for the Q10, noting that many that were sold were ultimately returned to where they were bought.
According to another source, an executive at a Canadian carrier who was not named, said they thought the Q10 "was going to be the savior," but instead, he said, it "just hit the ground and died."
That said, just after the Q10 launched, Jefferies analyst Peter Misek said his channel checks said the Q10 was doing well, and expected to help offset a decline in sales of its Z10 counterpart.
It's still early days, though. The Z10 hit store shelves in February in the U.K. and Canada, and March in the U.S., BlackBerry's former core audience. The Q10, however, did not arrive until May, and only hit international markets in June. The phone launches on Sprint on Friday.
Two months in, initial reaction may be tepid based on this report, but it's certainly not to call the Q10 a complete write-off.