After 14 years in the mobile phone business, BackBerry has pulled its plug from manufacturing any more of its smartphone devices.
“Our new Mobility Solutions strategy is showing signs of momentum, including our first major device software licensing agreement with a telecom joint venture in Indonesia,” CEO John Chen told investors. “Under this strategy, we are focusing on software development, including security and applications. The company plans to end all internal hardware development and will outsource that function to partners. This allows us to reduce capital requirements and enhance return on invested capital.”
The popularity of BlackBerry Messenger and its high-tech email system made its phones a smash hit among young users and professionals alike, but Apple’s iPhone and Google’s Android software, with millions of apps and full touchscreens, rendered them obsolete.
The company’s late, long-awaited BlackBerry 10 OS may have been popular with a tiny segment of the BlackBerry faithful, but it utterly failed in-market. The company’s first Android device, the Priv, wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t great, either, particularly not at its initial $700 price point.