BlackBerry Z10 Pre-Orders Available Via AT&T Tomorrow, March 12: $199

Those eagerly anticipating the BlackBerry Z10 release only have to wait another week and a half, but AT&T will let enthusiastic customers get their pre-orders in starting Tuesday, March 12.

The BlackBerry Z10 will be available for purchase on March 22, so the pre-orders are starting 10 days prior to launch. According to AT&T, the BlackBerry Z10 will cost $199 with a two-year contract.

Recently, T-Mobile announced that it would start offering the BlackBerry Z10 to business customers on March 11, but it's still not clear when other buyers will get a chance to purchase the device. Verizon, too, announced plans to sell the phone in the middle of March for the same price that AT&T listed, $199. Sprint customers, though, are out of luck: The carrier will only be offering the QWERTY keyboard-stacked Q10.

"AT&T customers were the first to experience BlackBerry smartphones and services in the U.S. and we are thrilled to bring the next evolution, the BlackBerry Z10, to the nation's fastest 4G LTE network," said Jeff Bradley, senior vice president, Devices and Developer Services at AT&T Mobility, in a press release"Customers who have grown to love the tried and true BlackBerry experience will continue to enjoy the easy typing and the secure platform they expect with a fresh platform that lets them get more out of their smartphone with easy access to all their messages in BlackBerry Hub."

The smartphone features a new, redesigned operating system, as well as a high-resolution, 4.2-inch screen and 8-megapixel camera with 1080p video-recording capabilities.

The Z10's price pits the phone directly against high-end competitors like Apple and Samsung, and BlackBerry is essentially betting the farm on the product. The Z10 has been available in other countries for a couple of months now, but since this will mark the phone's debut in the United States, the big question is whether or not BlackBerry can gain some momentum following the highly-anticipated Galaxy S4 reveal on March 14. Will the big event kill any chance BlackBerry has, or will customers find themselves willing to venture out with BlackBerry's touch-focused Z10?

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