BUSINESS

RIM Renamed BlackBerry In Major Branding Change

01/30/2013 10:39 EST | Updated 01/30/2013 10:39 EST

Research In Motion is now BlackBerry.

The tech company behind the BlackBerry smartphone brand announced it would rename itself after its flagship product at the launch of its new BlackBerry 10 platform on Tuesday.

“It is one brand, it is one promise … From today on, we are BlackBerry everywhere in the world,” CEO Thorsten Heins told a New York audience.

(STORY CONTINUES BELOW SLIDESHOW)

BlackBerry 10 Launch - Jan. 30, 2013

The Canadian Press reports:

Research In Motion says it's changing its corporate name to BlackBerry, the moniker of its globally recognized smartphones.

The company made the announcement during a splashy event in Manhattan to usher in the new BlackBerry 10 devices, which were originally due for release last year.

The new BlackBerry is widely seen as a make-or-break product for the tech pioneer.

Chief executive Thorsten Heins has taken to the stage at the splashy event to unveil the company's new line of BlackBerry devices.

The BlackBerry Z10 is the touchscreen model, while the BlackBerry Q10 will have a physical keyboard.

Both are powered by the new BB10 operating system.

"We heard you loud and clear,'' Heins told the audience. ``We built this for those people who said they just had to have the physical keyboard typing experience.''

Heins says the past year at the helm of the company has been his most challenging professional experience to date. But he adds it's been exhilarating as well.

Heins calls today's event a ``new day in the history of BlackBerry.''

Thousands have gathered at Pier 36, a massive entertainment venue on the shores of the East River.

The event will also likely include its release date, which is expected in the next four to six weeks, the phone's features and how much it will cost.

The company says the new BlackBerry will be released first in a touchscreen version, while a keypad alternative will follow in the weeks or months afterward.

The new phone launch is BlackBerry's attempt to regain its position in the highly competitive North American and European smartphone markets, which are now dominated by iPhone and Android devices.

While the first hurdles to overcome are the opinions of tech analysts and investor reaction, the true measure of success _ actual sales of the phones _ is still weeks away.

The BlackBerry has dramatically lost marketshare in recent years after a series of blunders.

Several network outages left customers without the use of the smartphones they had come to rely on, while the BlackBerry's hardware hasn't received a significant upgrade in years.

Heins has already offered a glimpse of some features on the new devices. They include BlackBerry Balance technology, which allows one phone to operate as both a business and personal device entirely separate from each other.

The new BlackBerry will also let users seamlessly shift between the phone's applications like they're flipping between pages on a desk.

In the coming weeks, BlackBerry will launch an advertising blitz to promote the phones, including aggressive social media campaigning, which includes plugs from celebrities on their Twitter accounts, and a 30-second advertisement on the Super Bowl, the most watched television program of the year.