BlackBerry (BBRY) Considering Android for New Device
Shares of BlackBerry Ltd (BBRY) were trading up +0.01 or +0.11 percent to $9.22 in Friday's premarket after Reuters reported this morning that the company may be ready to equip a new smartphone with Google's (GOOG) Android operating system software. Blackberry stock closed at $9.21 per share, down -0.11 or -1.18 percent in Thursday's regular trading session.
Waterloo, Ontario based BlackBerry Ltd, originally known as Research In Motion Ltd is a Canadian wireless equipment and telecommunications company best known for developing the BlackBerry brand of smartphones and tablets.
The sources, which prefer to remain anonymous due to the fact that they have not been authorized by the company to speak on the matter, say that the move to Android is part of a strategy focusing on device management and software. Blackberry 10, the company's latest line of smartphones has lagged behind Apple Inc. and other devices powered by the Android system, leaving Blackberry with less than a one percent market share, after the company at one time dominated the market.
A Blackberry spokesman said that, "We don't comment on rumors and speculation, but we remain committed to the BlackBerry 10 operating system, which provides security and productivity benefits that are unmatched. Nevertheless, two of the sources claim that the company may put out a slider device handset with the Android system by this fall.
In March, Blackberry introduced a new slider phone at the Mobile World Congress in Madrid, dubbed the "Curve , the company said that it would release a total of three new phones in 2015, including a high end handset produced in partnership with automobile manufacturer Porsche. Blackberry's latest operating system has an update allowing its devices to download Android apps from the Amazon (AMZN) app store.
The device featured in Madrid combines a touch screen with a physical keyboard, which can be used according to the user's preference. The company also announced at the Mobile World Congress that it plans to deliver its patented security software, communications and productivity features that can be used on any mobile device whether they run iOS, Windows or Android.
Blackberry is expecting that by adding a physical keyboard and a large touchscreen, the company can carve a niche in the Android dominated touchscreen market. The company hopes that its new smartphone will attract users of the older Blackberry models that want access to the Android's expanded app offerings.
Blackberry stock has been on a roller coaster ride this year, reaching a high of $12.63 per share in January, the stock is still under considerable pressure given the competition from Apple and Samsung products. With this morning's revelations, the company could begin the process of recovering some of the considerable market share it has lost having once dominated the smartphone market.
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