More bad news for BlackBerry: Rogers, Canada's largest wireless company, won't be offering the ailing phone manufacturer's latest Z30 model.
The Canadian provider's president, Robert Bruce, called the new Z30 "good," but also claimed it was "on the high end," and "maybe a little niche-y." He justified the decision by saying "we need to make decisions about what phones are the phones our customers are most interested in."
Rogers has the largest number of BlackBerry subscribers in Canada
The Z30 is BlackBerry's next flagship phone, and an attempt to cast away the shadows of the disastrous Z10 launch. BlackBerry is pitching to shift away from the consumer market — and the Z30 is one of BlackBerry's two planned high-end devices — but Rogers' decision will hurt: the provider has the largest number of BlackBerry subscribers in Canada, suggesting a user-base that'd be more inclined to upgrade to the newer model than most.
Rogers and BlackBerry have previously had strong ties, as The New York Times reports. BlackBerry used Rogers' network to develop its early products, and the two were working with each other 10 years before BlackBerry's first wireless email device. That relationship had continued through this year: the Canadian provider hosted the country's debut of BlackBerry 10 devices at its head offices in February.
BlackBerry recently received a buyout offer from another Canadian company: Fairfax Financial. The deal is expected to be finalized within a month pending regulatory approval.