CEO John Chen confirms LTE BlackBery Z3 will launch this year

By James Richardson on 28 Mar 2014 08:34 am EDT

Minutes ago during the Q4 earnings call BlackBerry CEO, John Chen, confirmed that there would indeed be a LTE version of the BlackBerry Z3 following its launch in Indonesia in late April. 

The all-touch Z3 with a 5 inch display will first hit Indonesia and then roll out to a few other counties in Asia before a global LTE version will be available. As we already know - the Foxconn built device will target the lower end smartphone user and is due to be priced at under the $200 mark. 

Back at Mobile World Congress in February when the Z3 was announced Chen did say that he had a plan to roll out the Z3 globally with LTE "sometime before I die". 

With the BlackBerry Z3 costing so little it will be interesting to see if it has an impact on the lower end Android and Windows Phone sales. I certainly hope so. BlackBerry 10 needs to be in more peoples hands. 

Will the LTE version cost a little more? We'll have to wait and see, but good news all round.

Reader comments

CEO John Chen confirms LTE BlackBery Z3 will launch this year


Release it free on new 2 year contracts here in the US with 10.3 software... they'll sell through plenty so long as there is a good marketing push

Posted with a Verizon Z30 running and CB10. [URL="bbmc:C0004F9BB"] My channel with zero subscribers [/URL]

It's great to hear and I know it will also come to Canada.

This product can really be put bb10 to new potential customers if they get the phone for free in a 2 years contact. for Android apps from your blackberry 10 browser

Not a "new" BB7 device. They're going to do another production of the 9900 due to the popularity of the device. BB7 outsold BB10 last quarter 2 to 1.

Posted via CB10 from my Z30.

I like it too much more than the z10 and z30 design. What I like about it is that it doesn't have the extra girth at the top and bottom.

Posted via CB10

would be great if they sell it in europe and other markets as well. less than 200$ for phone?! i would buy one for my wife :)

I am telling the z3 is an extremely important phone for BlackBerry on order to see greater BlackBerry 10 sales the Indonesian market is huge once BlackBerry 10 phones are priced reasonably we are good to go plus remember john Chen said they are working on a high end smartphone for q4

Posted via CB10

Very good news. Now the house cleaning is almost done and BlackBerry can focus on making money. :)

This part sounds like old BlackBerry.

The one thing that Mr Chen does not seem to have the ability to fix is the hardware business. Announcing a product that few will be able to buy before 6 months from the announcement is bad strategy. BlackBerry needed a low end BlackBerry 10 phone last year not next summer. This phone should be the absolute top priority to get in as many markets as possible

Since they have no marketing I have no problem with him announcing it. Average customer doesn't even know about BB10, I always hear "wow that's a BlackBerry"

Posted via CB10

I think he has to announce it to ensure the street that he has a plan to improve sales. BlackBerry doesn't have the luxury of remaining quiet. The good news is that most consumers aren't following BlackBerry earnings news & have no idea that the Z3 is coming.

Posted via CB10 from my Z30.

this for 200 or lumia520 for 60-70 , millions of people out there who dont care will choose the cheapest

Posted via the Android CrackBerry App!

Should release earlier... late of april is much to late, noxia x just hit indonesia this week.

Posted via CB10

I mentioned this in another thread. Good looking phone needs a bit of bump in specs (camera, ram, screen). Looking forward to grabbing one especially running 10.3. That's going to be a sexy looking device.

True. But we can't confirm if BlackBerry plans on releasing the LTE version as high end or entry level. If it's entry level and all they add is LTE I'd be happy. I think JC realises at this moment BlackBerry can't compete with Apple and Samsung in the upper tier. Maybe they should release this as entry and try getting the OS in as many hands as possible.
Challenges: carriers pushing people to another platform. No advertising.

It would be extremely confusing to have the Z3 both high end and low end. My guess is that the LTE version will likely not be much better, spec wise, than the non LTE version. I'm sure they'll beef it up just enough to make LTE work & not much more.

Posted via CB10 from my Z30.


I think the Foxconn partnership has changed everything. Look how quick the Z3 is going from concept to market. In the past BlackBerry has over-promised and under-delivered. I expect that Chen is trying to change the corporate culture in this regard that hoping forward we will see very conservative promises that are beaten in execution.

Posted via CB10

Late again on their low end smartphone while Moto G crushing the entire market.

Late on their phones, late on BBM multiplatform, late on their own funeral.

Posted via CB10

Obviously you don't know how to run a business that makes and sells smartphones.

Posted via CrackBerry 10 (CB10) application using my BlackBerry Q10.

This is exactly the kind if device Blackberry needs to take a bit out of Apple. Good bang for your buck is the marketing approach that will turn the tables on top of an android/blackberry os experience. Just ask people that have iphones. Many are growing tired of the same old thing and I know a lot of those people changed to android and would not take a chance on a Blackberry in fear that being told in stores that Blackberry is going out of business. Now that there is a low cost phone . It is time for Blackberry to be clear that the company is hear to stay. A reinsurance program to the public so people do not fear buying products from BlackBerry.

Posted from a Blackberry Z10

Won't matter if the stores hide them or continue to steer customers to other phones. Would like to have heard a marketing plan to go along with new product.

Posted via CB10

Don't believe BlackBerry know how to to do global as Q5, z30 can't get then and very limited z10 and q10 avaliable with carriers in Ireland

Posted via CB10

As Indonesian, with that price level, this will be tempting for the BBOS to switch. Finger cross!

Posted via CB10

Another phone that won't sell in the US! Because NO ONE will know about it. [Below all these comments is an ad for the new Samsung S5. How interesting that it is on a BB site (using work computer).] NO advertising = NO sales. No word on letting people know about these phones. No news on a replacement for the Z10 (Z20?) or the Z30. 18 months for these phones to come out, should be 18 weeks. They were behind in getting the Z10 out and now they will be behind in getting these phones out. Probably the only people that will buy the Z3 will be existing, hardcore BB owners who already own a BB10 phone and always want the latest model. iPhones and Android phones need to be replaced with BB10 phones.

Now this Z3 sounds like a device that can dominate the low end market... can we see it for 109.99? On contract? Under $300 off contract?

Posted via CB10

Nice move, yeah hope all legacy users in Indonesia will make their jump to this phone when it goes on the market next month, well sadly the Q5 was supposed to do this last year but its price was like $399 when it came out then no one even cared about that, the Q10 is still moving along. I'm hoping on you Z3, you're the game changer, get along and change the market!

Good news? LOL Not one successful BB10 device has yet to hit the market, what makes anyone thinks this device will do any better?

+1000. Yup! This one is definitely priced to move. Reminds me of the Curve line that everyone had in 2009/2010 because it was dirt cheap!

Posted via CB10 from my Z30.

The problem is BlackBerry was in demand back then today apart from enterprise there is zero demand for anything BlackBerry. Most people dont even know they are even in business

Wont sell in here. $200 is still too expensive because our currency (rupiah) is weakening by 30% than last year. $200 is higher than official minimum wage here.

I'll grab one for sure possibly two if the price is right! It's going to be interesting to say the least.

Via my newly added Q5

LTE vs 3g isn't that big of a deal unless your downloading movies. I stream netflix just fine using my wireless hotspot on my bold 9900, that was was just 3g..

Posted via CB10

It looks a bit like a Nokia Lumia phone. I'm happy chen decided to continue the qwerty keyboards. I was a solid android touch screen user for 4 years, a windows phone and, iphone user for a very short period. After trying Blackberry for the first time, I find myself comfortable with the 9310 curve. I do hope the following phone will have touch screen, track pad and, qwerty keys. That would be golden. People love options.

Wonder when someone from CrackBerry team will spot the typo in the headline and correct it. Always errors in James Richardson stories from wrong links, spelling mistakes... poor show from an editor.

Posted via CB10

Z3 really looks like a nice device. Exactly, what Blackberry needs right now. Hope it will be a hit!!!

Still very slow to execute, and when looking at all the leaks, it also seems to be a lack of focus, thus a strategy issue. Only Z10, q10, q5, z30 in 2,5 years. How many win phones with how many forms factors has Nokia put to market in the same time frame with having a comparable transition ?
The result is that BlackBerry has missed the market trends(even Kevin says z10 should have been the z30) but also because they only truly looked at apple. By the time z3 reaches the market a 200$ price tag will be risky, 150$ the norm and 100$ the key to success. But it means that the os can use Chinese chips, but a 2 os in one is maybe making it difficult. I've read that They didn't dare on q5, and this had a price way off. At 250, at launch it would have had a chance but it was far higher...

Any update on a release date for this z3? Hopefully someone puts a couple up on eBay as soon as it's released.

Posted via CB10

Would like to know the release date of the international version? Is there a possibility of having a dual-sim; that will be sweet!?

Early birds.....