Thorsten Heins unveiled the BlackBerry 10 operating system in its beta version today at the company's BlackBerry World conference in Orlando.
New features of the system include a modified keypad that will allow users to select full words with a single key stroke, as well as a camera that captures several frames that can be combined to create a single ``ideal'' picture.
Heins says each developer will go home with a prototype of the new operating system.
The BlackBerry World conference in Orlando, Fla., is an annual event was once considered a victory lap for executives of the Blackberry maker.
But this year, the company is trying to rally developers in hopes they can help rescue the smartphone maker's dwindling sales.
The strategy comes amid questions about the future of the Canadian technology firm that has been the centre of takeover rumours in recent months.
But while some have expressed hopes that the company will use the three-day event to unveil its highly anticipated next generation of BlackBerry devices, that's unlikely to happen. The company said it will launch the BlackBerry 10 hardware in the latter half of 2012 and doesn't plan to showcase it until it is ready.
Financial analysts are mostly absent from the conference, as RIM opted to cancel the presentations and seminars that specifically catered to them.
Instead, RIM said it will have a separate analyst event timed for the release of the BlackBerry 10 models later this year.
They'll also have a chance to meet with the company's recently appointed CEO Thorsten Heins.
As of Tuesday, Heins has been at the reins of the smartphone maker for 100 days, brought into the role as part of an urgent effort to turn around the company's flagging sales.
But Heins knows that won't happen overnight, and has launched a strategic review of the company's operations.
Since RIM's conference last year, the company has seen the resignation of co-CEOs Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis and the subsequent departure of Balsillie from the company entirely.
RIM has also been hurt by weak financial results, as well as the worst service outage in its history.
Before it unveils its new line of phones later this year, the company's strategy appears to be filling the gaps. That includes working with developers to create a stronger offering of applications for its BlackBerry App World store, and developing a series of new phones expected to debut later this year.