The last we’ve heard from Blackberry is when they released the BlackBerry Key2 in 2018 under Chinese company TCL Communication. It was a follow up on the BlackBerry KeyOne and BlackBerry Priv which both ran on Android, completely abandoning its own mobile platform but keeping the physical keyboard. While these releases showed a lot of promise, the iconic brand failed to catch up to the growing market share of Apple and Samsung.
It’s been two years since, but there is some good news: a revival of the brand was announced.
The new-generation BlackBerry will be handled by a new company, Texas-based mobile security company OnwardMobility, and will be manufactured by Foxconn subsidiary FIH Mobile Limited.
According to the press release, their new smartphone will be out on the first half of 2021. So far, only the physical keyboard and the 5G connectivity are the known features.
Peter Franklin, CEO of OnwardMobility said, “BlackBerry smartphones are known for protecting communications, privacy, and data. This is an incredible opportunity for OnwardMobility to bring next-generation 5G devices to market with the backing of BlackBerry and FIH Mobile.”
BlackBerry was a major hit among businesspeople in the past ever since it released its first prominent device in 1998, the Inter@ctive Page 950, developed by a company called Research in Motion which is also the founder of the brand. Its top-of-the-line security was its main selling point, and the physical keyboard and the scrolling ball made the mobile interesting. There was also its trademark BBM, which is an encrypted text messaging platform.
However, when iPhone was introduced by Apple in 2007, this marked the downfall of the Blackberry phones. The company was not able to recover and adapt to the touchscreen revolution.
In 2021, the new-generation BlackBerry hopes to turn things around.