Manufacturer Axes Phone Business For Services Push

Wednesday, 05 Oct, 2016

Blackberry, once the world's leading smartphone manufacturer, is set to stop designing and making phones. BlackBerry is very well-known for creating some of the most secure and productive software for business and even casual users, so by having this element featured on other company's hardware, I think we may have a pretty good match.

"It's really more about (the) smart of a smartphone, not about the phone of a smartphone".

However, he did not comment on any future releases of BlackBerry handsets.

"We are reaching an inflection point with our strategy", said Chen in a statement.

Fewer than 100 employees will lose their jobs as a result, he said. The one-time market leader has been making devices for 14 years, but lost ground to Apple in the wake of the launch of the first iPhone in 2007.

In recent years, BlackBerry sales floundered.

Technically BlackBerry stepped out of the smartphone market some years ago and has since been bolstering its reputation with businesses and security. Three months earlier, Chen said 500,000 of the devices were sold at an average cost of US$290.

It comes as BlackBerry prepares to release its final update to its own BlackBerry 10 operating system, version 10.3.3 - which was supposed to have been delivered in March. The last BlackBerry phone to be manufactured by the company was the Priv, the company's first Android-powered device, released in November previous year. So, from now onwards all the development for BlackBerry-branded phones would be left to BlackBerry's partners, which will license BlackBerry's technology and brand.

If you were hoping for a new BlackBerry device in 2016 you're out of luck. "Under the agreement, they will source, distribute and market BlackBerry handsets in Indonesia, our strongest market".

BlackBerry reported a net loss of $372m for the three months ending 31 August, compared to a profit of $51m in the same period past year. Revenue also fell by a third to $334 million.