I suppose it is the only way to keep them in business, through subsidy.
Telefonica will be spending another €200m with BlackBerry, borrowed from Export Development Canada (EDC) as part of its ongoing deal with the company and its supporting country. It's far from the first time Telefonica has taken advantage of low-interest loans from the government-backed agency. EDC has been lending to Telefonica …
Reading the article and some other reports of the transaction I am not sure that calling it a subsidy is either fair or accurate. As indicated in the article this is a very long standing commercial activity where the loan cannot result in a loss so although it may be a low interest rate loan it is still a loan.
I also think that unless you insist on buying an unlocked SIM-free full fat smartphone direct from the manufacturer you will still not be paying full price. In fact I am not so sure that it is possible to determine what a full price is and the closest you could probably get is the Manufacturers Recommended Retail Price which is normally treated as the 'look how much you save buying from us' figure.
Try speaking to an airtime provider about why your monthly bill doesn't come down once the 12/24 months is up and you have paid for the phone and you will be left wondering if the true cost of the phone is thousands rather than hundreds as they all but claim they are making them available to you at a huge loss.
A dying phone for a dying company. Quite fitting
No carriers want to take the risk of holding Blackberry phone stock after the launch tanked so badly - so resellers like this and Brightstar get lumbered with the obligations...
"A dying phone for a dying company"
...BlackBerry has 80 million users, out of which 18 million are Enterprise subscribers, just released a brand-new OS and handset and sold 1-2 million units in its first 2-3 weeks, with half of its new customers are reportedly converting from Android and iPhones - aye, a dying company...
...probably the most hilarious comment this week - and it's only Monday. :)
"...BlackBerry has 80 million users"
Did have. They lost 3 million just in the last quarter.
"just released a brand-new OS and handset and sold 1-2 million units in its first 2-3 weeks, with half of its new customers are reportedly converting from Android and iPhones"
See Blackberry's annual results - they SHIPPED only 1 million handsets, of which only ~600K sold and the rest sit on shelves.
Only 45% of the 600K that bought the new handset were existing customers - which means that out of ~76 million current customers, there is near zero interest for the new handset range!
And they lost 2/3 of a billion dollar last year....
Nice to see someone is optimistic about Teléfonica's debt mountain.
Icon is what you would get if you set fire to the bank notes.
Cynicism about Blackberry
If the transaction between Telefonica and EDC is legal and ethical, and is not a precedent in their business relationahip, what is is the issue with the cynical "false" claims and groundless projection of failure from commenters, unless these know-nothings are supporters of or work for a flailing and not very successful mobile competitor like Microsoft.
These nay-sayers have no inside knowledge or insight into the future of moile technology market any more than they can accurately predict the weather next week.
Re: Cynicism about Blackberry
Apple gave the 'opinion leaders' free tat. BB did not. Result predictable.