BlackBerry Z10 2Blackberry 10, no matter how you slice it, is BlackBerry’s last chance to save itself from complete irrelevance.

But what if the age of BlackBerry’s complete irrelevance is already here? That seems to be the case, judging by a poll commissioned by research firm MKM Partners, which confirms one thing above all: Lots of people have no idea BlackBerry 10 exists.

According to the poll, 83% of the 1,500 Americans asked said that they were not aware that BlackBerry 10 had launched. Eighty three percent. Perhaps just as worrying: Only six percent said they intended to make their next phone a BlackBerry.

blackberry 10 on iphone

Above: Creating an in-browser test version of BB10 was a smart move by BlackBerry.

Image Credit: Sean Ludwig

Obviously, this is a poll and shouldn’t be viewed as a concrete indication of BlackBerry’s chances, but it does give us a pretty good sense of BlackBerry’s failure to get the word out about its new operating system (though letting people try out BB10 in their browsers certainly helps). If people don’t have any idea phones like the BlackBerry Z10 exist, what are the chances they are going to want to buy them?

The good news: The poll results aren’t entirely representative. BlackBerry shipped 1 million BlackBerry 10 phones last quarter, so there are obviously some people out there paying attention to what it’s working on.

Unsurprisingly — and this might come as solace to BlackBerry — Microsoft seems to be having the same problem with Windows Phone: Over 60% of participants in the MKM Partners poll said they didn’t know Windows Phone 8 devices were on sale.

BlackBerry and Microsoft aren’t just losing the smartphone marketshare battle —  they’re losing the smartphone mindshare battle as well.

Photo: Devindra Hardawar/VentureBeat

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