BlackBerry

BlackBerry is set to roll out classic phones, indicating the end of an era

Gadgets Technology

After January 4, BlackBerry handsets running the original operating system and services will no longer be supported, signalling the end of an era for the famous device that ushered in the mobile age.

According to BlackBerry Ltd.’s end-of-life page, handsets running its in-house software “will no longer be expected to reliably function” after Tuesday. BlackBerry Ltd., formerly known as Research In Motion, whose signature handset in the 1990s came to symbolize working on the move, said handsets running its in-house software “will no longer be expected to reliably function” after Tuesday.

BlackBerry’s old devices will no longer be supported. So, if you’re still using a QWERTY keyboard, you are warned.

BlackBerry

The company issued a message on December 22 reminding consumers of the development, which would affect services for all of its non-Android devices, including BlackBerry 10, 7.1 OS, and prior.

According to the statement, “as of this date, devices running these old services and software over either carrier or Wi-Fi connections will no longer reliably work, including for data, phone calls, SMS, and 9-1-1 capabilities.”

The BlackBerry was once a phone powerhouse, with a physical keyboard and BBM instant messaging. The gadgets were proudly carried by white-collar workers and then-President Barack Obama in the first decade of the 2000s.

BlackBerry had approximately 20% of the worldwide smartphone market in 2009 and 2010, with an even larger share in the United States, selling more than 50 million devices every year.

However, with the development of touchscreen devices such as the iPhone and Android, the phone soon went out of favour. And, until something like the T-Mobile Sidekick or Motorola Razr deserves a revival, BlackBerry’s time in the spotlight appears to be over.

In 2016, the Canadian firm transitioned to a software-only business, licensing its name and services to TCL Communication Technology Holdings Ltd., which continued to release smartphones until the arrangement expired in 2020. TCL devices ran on Alphabet Inc.’s Android operating system and will be supported until August.

However, nostalgia for the BlackBerry moniker made it one of the meme stocks of 2021, causing a big increase in its share price in January before an equally dramatic drop.