07/30/2013 05:18 EDT | Updated 09/29/2013 05:12 EDT

BlackBerry Q5 Canadian Launch Set For Aug. 13

BlackBerry says its lower-priced keyboard smartphone is headed to Canadian stores next month, even though it was originally intended solely for emerging markets.

The Waterloo, Ont.-based smartphone maker unveiled the cheaper version of its latest line of smarphones in May.

At that time, chief executive Thorsten Heins said that BlackBerry was focused on releasing the Q5 in certain countries where a lower-priced alternative was considered essential, like Europe, the Middle East and Asia.

Earlier this month, the company launched the device in the United Kingdom, one of the most popular regions for higher-end BlackBerry phones.

The move allows BlackBerry to offer its new BlackBerry 10 operating system to smartphone users who can't afford, or don't want to spend the money, on a more expensive phone.

The company says the BlackBerry Q5 will hit Canadian stores on Aug. 13 through carriers like Bell (TSX:BCE) and Telus (TSX:T), as well as various retailers. The phone will also be available through Roger's (TSX:RCI.B) lower-priced label Fido. It has yet to announce how much the phones will cost in Canada.

BlackBerry's shares closed ahead four cents at $8.93 on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

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