The BlackBerry has been reborn. But the question remains: Who will buy it?
With Wednesday’s introduction of a new operating system and two new smartphone designs, BlackBerry is launching a last-ditch effort to regain relevance. As part of the makeover, the phone’s manufacturer is dropping its 25-year-old name, Research in Motion, and will now be known by the name of its signature product: BlackBerry.
“This is not the finish line; this is the starting line,” said Thorsten Heins, the company’s chief executive.
That optimism comes against a dreary backdrop. The new operating system was delayed by more than two years by technical problems, while the smartphone market became more competitive.
Once the standard corporate smartphone, the BlackBerry has fallen out of favor in the face of the iPhone and phones running Google’s Android operating system. Even stalwart users that rely on the phones’ security features, such as the departments of Defense and Homeland Security, have allowed some employees to adopt other smartphones.