BlackBerry Surges as AT&T Says BlackBerry Z10 Available in Two Weeks

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) - The Blackberry Z10 is coming! The Blackberry Z10 is coming!

After nearly two months since its formal introduction in New York, U.S. customers will be able to buy a Blackberry ( BBRY) Z10 of their own this month. The anticipation of the new model helped fuel a 12 percent advance in Research in Motion Ltd's U.S.-traded shares to $14.62, its biggest gain in five weeks.

AT&T ( T) this morning announced said it will begin selling the Canadian company's new touchscreen smartphone beginning Friday, March 22. Dallas-based AT&T is expected to sell the handset for $199.99 along with a two-year service commitment. AT&T will start accepting pre-orders for the Z10 beginning tomorrow, March 12. Shares of AT&T slipped 0.6 percent to $36.48.

The Z10 is the first new Blackberry device to operate on the company's overhauled operating system. When a proper AT&T SIM card is placed inside the phone, users will be able to utilize the company's speedy 4G/LTE network.

We've discovered, with our test unit, that the same model Blackberry can also run on T-Mobile's U.S. network. There are also settings that indicate that the phone will be one of the first take advantage of T-Mobile's LTE system. The German carrier is expected to begin pre-orders for their own Z10 - to business customers - for $249.99.

A second Blackberry model, the Q10 with a physical QWERTY keyboard, is expected to hit the stores beginning in May.

--Written by Gary Krakow in New York.

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Gary Krakow is TheStreet's senior technology correspondent.

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