BB10 phones to ship ‘within 30 days’ of Jan 30 unveiling event

research-in-motion– Next-gen handsets sent to carriers for testing? Check.

– Important security certification for next-gen handsets received? Check.

– Unveiling date of next-gen handsets set? Check.

– Launch date for next-gent handsets set? Er, well, kind of. Y’know. Yes….broadly speaking. Um…

On Monday, Research In Motion announced that its long-awaited next-generation BB10 operating system and handsets will be unveiled on January 30. Unveiling is all well and good, but many were left wondering when the actual launch date will be. Well, now we know. Sort of.

In an interview with Bloomberg on Tuesday, RIM’s chief operating officer Kristian Tear said the company wanted to launch the devices “as quickly as possible”, with the first BB10 devices hitting stores on multiple continents “within 30 days” of the January 30 unveiling event.

Technically, this means consumers interested in getting their hands on a new BB10 device might have to wait till the beginning of March, but let’s hope – for RIM’s sake – it means early February.

The Ontario-based mobile company had hoped to launch BB10 last year but was left red-faced when it was forced to admit its new OS and handsets weren’t ready. Its latest promise, which has been holding firm for a while now, is that it’ll launch during the first quarter of 2013.

RIM has been doing its best to stay in the headlines recently, pushing out a number of news releases keeping consumers up to date with what’s happening with BB10. Last month the company announced the devices had been sent for testing to more than 50 carriers worldwide. And just last week BB10 received important security clearance that will allow the new handsets to be used by government agencies in the US and Canada.

“The hard work will not stop here as we build towards launch,” RIM boss Thorsten Heins said in October. “Our developer teams are continuing to generate momentum to bring a wealth of applications to BlackBerry 10, our enterprise teams have started to present BlackBerry 10 devices and services to our business customers, and our engineers are fully mobilized to ensure that BlackBerry 10 launches flawlessly in the first quarter of 2013.”

It sounds like everything is going to plan. Now let’s just hope those new phones really do see the light of day “within 30 days” of the unveiling event at the end of January.