Everyone’s favourite business phone is back in the game!
BlackBerry, the former phone manufacturing titan whose quick rise to the top of the mobile phone industry, and subsequent fall from the top which at times seemed like it would never end, is back.
The transformation from loss making smartphone unable to compete against the likes of Android and iPhone to a mainly software based enterprise seems to be working.
The Canadian based ‘software’ maker has been on a seriously good run of fortune since the beginning of 2017, resulting in this week’s announcement of even better than expected profits, which subsequently then sent share prices up by 12%.
BlackBerry then, has cause to celebrate. It’s pivot in the last few years to providing a mainly software and services business has shown sales increases of some 26% year on year.
BlackBerry, remind me why I know the name?
The company became famous in the first decade of the 21st Century for its physical keyboard phones and excellent security features. By 2010, Blackberries accounted for almost one third of the US Smartphone market. Its main competitor at the time was Finnish phone maker, Nokia.
The subsequent release of Apple’s iPhone and then Google’s Android systems almost drove the company into a decline from which it barely recovered.
Blackberry launched its last phone and its last shot at recouping lost market share in 2016. It did not sell well. When the company finally gave up on its hardware ventures, it had less than 1% of the US smartphone base.
Coming to a car near you – soon
BlackBerry’s future also looks secure. A significant proportion of its revenues now come from designing and managing software for other companies, and its technology is found in several car manufacturers systems. Last week BlackBerry also announced it had struck a new deal with the car parts supplier Delphi Automotive for operating systems for self-driving cars.