As BlackBerry is gearing up to release its first Android-powered smartphone, CEO John Chen has revealed that the company may throw in the towel on its hardware efforts if they fail to make a profit within the next year. BlackBerry, once a global leader in the early smartphone race, has struggled to stay relevant in a world where the appeal of a smartphone is centered around media consumption and photography. Gone are the days when all we really wanted on our smartphone was a good hardware keyboard and secure email access.
If the Android-powered BlackBerry Priv and other BB10 devices fail to make a positive impact on BlackBerry’s bottom line, the company will likely refocus its efforts on software services for Android and iOS. John Chen believes that “Android in the enterprise is a very undeserved space,” adding, “I’m building a software business that focuses on endpoint security. My audience goes beyond just enterprise,” he said, going on to say that it also involves hospitals, banks, government agencies and consumers too. “We’re focusing on the high-end.”
Do you think the BlackBerry Priv has what it takes to help turn the company around? Personally, I’ve always been a sucker for good Android phones with great hardware keyboards.