As BlackBerry seeks a buyer for its struggling smartphone business, the Z30 could be the final product launched in the company's history.

BlackBerry Z30 Launches
The 5in BlackBerry Z30 could be the final smartphone released by the Canadian company. (BlackBerry)

Announced without much in the way of fanfare - and in the same week as Apple launched the much more high-profile iPhone 5C and iPhone 5S - the BlackBerry Z30 is the company's fourth smartphone to run on its BlackBerry 10 platform, and it could be the last.

BlackBerry announced last month that it was setting up a special committee to look at alternative strategies for the future of the company including a possible sell-off of the brand.

It was reported earlier this month that the company was seeking to fast track an auction process which could see new owners of the BlackBerry brand as soon as November, meaning the Z30 could well be the last major release from the company.

Sources speaking to the Wall Street Journal said the committee had already narrowed its list of potential bidders though it is not confirmed yet that any serious bids will emerge.

High profile launch

Thorsten Heins, CEO of the Canadian smartphone maker pinned the company's future on the success of the BlackBerry 10 platform, but despite a high-profile launch in January of this year along with smartphones like the Z10, Q10 and Q5, BlackBerry has failed to reverse the slide in sales which has been happening for a number of years.

The BlackBerry Z30 is an update to the Z10 and features an all touchscreen interface, unlike the Q10 and Q5 products which feature the company's iconic physical QWERTY keyboard.

The phone will come with an updated version of the company's operating system, BlackBerry 10.2, which brings with it an updated version of BlackBerry Hub, allowing you to only see messages from people which are most important to you.


The phone features a 5in Super AMOLED screen with a resolution of 720 x 1280, giving it a pixel density of 295 pixels per inch (ppi) which is some way short of the 356ppi of the Z10.

It is powered by a 1.7GHz S4 Pro chip from Qualcomm paired with 2GB of RAM. BlackBerry is heralding the 2,880mAh battery as the largest it has ever put in a smartphone, but unlike previous models, the battery this time is non-removable.

At 9.4mm, the phone is almost as slim as the Z10, but is significantly taller and wider. The phone will support some 4G networks though BlackBerry hasn't announced specific bands yet.

The phone will go on sale at the beginning of next week in the UK and some Middle East countries but no pricing information has been released yet, with no UK networks confirming they will be offering the device. however there is a pre-order page which indicates that Selfridges will be offering the phone in the UK, as it did exclusivelty with the Q10 at launch.

BlackBerry is a relatively young brand, beginning life just 14 years ago with the release of an email pager. However in 2003 it launched what was arguably the world's first smartphone and quickly captured a large section of the market, especially among business customers.

However the launch of the iPhone in 2007 and subsequently Android smartphones have seen BlackBerry's market share decline rapidly, and it has failed to compete in a market where Apple and Samsung now dominate.