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There was a time when BlackBerry devices dominated the smartphone space. But the past few years have been tough for the company, with growing competition from Apple’s iPhone and an army of Android devices. BlackBerry’s brief foray into the tablet space wasn’t exactly a home run either.

So what’s a struggling company to do? In this case, the answer appears to be to form a committee to look at “strategic alternatives,” which could involve selling the company — if anybody’s interested in buying.

At the very least, BlackBerry patents are probably worth a bit of cash, and some of the latest software and hardware the company’s come up with actually looks pretty interesting. The question is whether anyone would want to buy BlackBerry and continue to sell BlackBerry devices, or if a potential buyer would simply take some of those ideas and incorporate them into Android or another operating system.

On the other hand, there’s another option. If the company goes private, it wouldn’t have to answer to shareholders and that could give BlackBerry a bit more breathing room to invest in long-term plans for the future without worrying too much about immediate profits.

BlackBerry Q10

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9 replies on “Lilbits (8-12-2013): The uncertain future of BlackBerry”

  1. Reminds me of when Palm mismanaged themselves into history.

    Can an exciting name change to eat up more profits in the form of more stationary and marketing be far behind?

  2. Would love to see the QNX platform take off. . . but I don’t think BB is going to get it there.

    1. QNX itself is already pretty widely used for embedded devices, BB10 is just the distro of it that BB developed…

      Whether BB survives or not depends on the next two years… it’ll be tight but they’re not at the point of no return yet… Mind, companies like even AOL is still around!

      There’s different levels of survival, a company doesn’t have to be one of the top few to still survive…

  3. They just need to support their customers like they’re just as important than the air they breathe rather than dropping them like used Kleenexes. They’ve brought this on themselves…

    I tell ya, I love my keyboard on my 9810, BBM, Bridge that works well with the 9810 and for the most part, my PlayBook too. The PlayBook could still rock if they polished it and fixed bugs – I’d even go so far to say that a PlayBook 2 based on BB 10, Android 4 emulation and modern specs would go over very well. Now release BBM for the current PlayBook and fix the stock browser and I might not be so pissed off. They’re just apps (ones you own) so no excuses except ineptitude will explain your lack of deliverance…

  4. As long as they continue to gouge their customers in an Apple-like fashion without actually delivering any added value, they’re doomed.

  5. I wouldn’t be terribly heartbroken if someone bought RIM and started selling BB hardware with the latest version of Android aimed at professionals, thus filling a niche that other’s are incapable of filling.

    1. Uh… BB is all about the software and services, if they just put Android on it then it would no longer be a BB device.

      While the hardware isn’t anything that special, it’s a ARM based phone like many others… Just designed for business and government users mainly…

      The problem with BB is it lacks appeal for regular consumers and there’s no easy fix for that…

  6. Going private would only work if they actually HAD a plan to survive the near term problems and then win. But they are caught in a hurricane of change, between Android being almost free and iOS not being licensable and Windows Mobile being a product customers actually seem to like less than BB.

    Combine with the current paranoia about government snooping and BB’s centralized server model and the corporate world (especially that outside the western world) certainly have to be filling their Huggies contemplating how many of their emails are being read and sifted.

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