BlackBerry Announces The Q5, A BB10-Powered Qwerty Smartphone Aimed At Emerging Markets

BlackBerry has just announced the BlackBerry Q5 smartphone, the latest BB10 handset to come out of the Waterloo-based firm. Like the Q10, the Q5 has a QWERTY keyboard and comes in a host of colors, including red, black, white and pink.

“I know it’s going to be a big hit,” said Thorsten Heins, as he made the announcement.

According to the CEO, the Q5 will be aimed at emerging markets, as BlackBerry sees an opportunity to infiltrate markets in which most people might not have a computer or laptop, but where they do need a smartphone.

In today’s press event, Heins let slip that the Q5 would launch within BlackBerry’s global carrier network starting in the summer, but he failed to mention pricing.

Not much is known about specs, but we can tell you that it has a 3.1-inch touchscreen to go along with that Qwerty keyboard.

It also comes pre-loaded with the latest version of BB10, which brings with it features like Time Shift and Story Maker, ensuring users get a good photo each time they use their camera. BB10 also has BBM Video, letting users video chat and even share their screen, which comes in handy for enterprise users.

But perhaps most important, BB10 offers the BlackBerry Hub, which lets you get instant access to all your notifications, email, etc. without ever leaving an application window.

Here’s what Thorsten Heins said about it in a prepared statement:

BlackBerry is excited to bring the new BlackBerry Q5 smartphone to our customers in selected markets around world. The BlackBerry Q5 gives you the best of everything with its cutting-edge BlackBerry 10 functionality and a physical QWERTY keyboard. It is for youthful fans that are passionate, confident and bold, and it makes it easy for them to have fun, create, share and stay connected.

Even back when the company went by Research In Motion, BlackBerry has always been focused on developing markets. The company’s 70-80 million subscribers are mostly in regions like the Middle East, India, Europe, and Africa. That said, the Q5 will be available in July in select markets in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Latin America.