AT&T officially announced a Feb. 20 launch date and pricing details for the BlackBerry Classic and BlackBerry Passport
The BlackBerry Classic will arrive first on AT&T’s network, but Verizon has yet to release an official launch date. We may now finally have one, however.
BlackBerry Classic going to Verizon
A reader apparently told the folks at Crackberry that Verizon will finally launch the BlackBerry Classic on its network on Feb. 26. So far the mobile carrier has not officially revealed the launch date. Crackberry’s tipster reportedly claimed that Verizon employees have received training on the Classic and notification of when the handset will be available on their network.
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The tipster also sent what was said to be a copy of an internal memo from Verizon. What the memo doesn’t say is how much the Classic will start out at, so we’re still waiting to hear a price for Verizon’s version of the smartphone. However, AT&T revealed pricing details today (see below), so it’s possible that Verizon’s prices could be similar.
Will the BlackBerry Classic win back old fans?
The first U.S. carrier to pick up the BlackBerry Classic was AT&T, and the carrier announced today that it will be available in its retail stores starting on Feb. 20. The struggling Canadian company even made an AT&T-only version of the Classic, rounding the edges of the smartphone to cater to the carrier’s wishes. The handset was designed to attract fans of BlackBerry’s legacy smartphones, so it includes the QWERTY keyboard the company was known for and brings back a host of old features like the tool belt, which has since been upgraded for the 21st century.
AT&T said it will also make the BlackBerry Passport available in its stores on the same day as the Classic. The Passport brings an unconventional square-shaped design which BlackBerry CEO John Chen has touted as being perfect for business users who read a lot of documents on their smartphones.
AT&T pricing for AT&T revealed
In a press release today, AT&T said the BlackBerry Classic will start out at $49.99 with a two-year contract or $419.99 without a contract. On the AT&T Next Plan, buyers can pay $14 per month for the Next 24 plan, $17.50 per month for the Next 18 plan or $21 a month with the AT&T Next 12 plan.
The BlackBerry Passport starts at $199.00 with a two-year contract or $649.99 without a contract. On the Next plans, it will be available for $21.67 a month on the Next 24 plan, $27.09 on the Next 18 plan or $32.50 a month with the Next 12 plan.
Shares of BlackBerry closed up by 2.33% at $10.09 per share on Friday at the NASDAQ.