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Analyst says BlackBerry may exit handset business to focus solely on Enterprise and security

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The most recent flagship smartphone released by BlackBerry was the Android-based Priv last November.

There have been rumblings the company will launch another Android-powered device, currently known by the codename Vienna, but nothing to-date has been confirmed. According to TD Securities analyst Daniel Chan, BlackBerry is destined for a different fate, and is possibly preparing to exit the handset business.

In a note to clients, Chan stated the recent news of Facebook and WhatsApp abandoning support for its apps on BlackBerry, coupled with no new device plans, could mean BlackBerry CEO John Chen is planning to scrap his company’s handset space to focus on the Enterprise market.

If BlackBerry solely focusses on enterprise and security its business would amount to $1.4 billion USD business per year, which is a “much better overall picture than today,” said Chan in an interview with the Financial Post.

Chan noted, “Not only are there no BB10 devices in the pipeline, but also the loss of two of the most popular mobile apps across all platforms could lead to the end of life of BB10.”

However, Chan could also be completely wrong. Chen noted during a recent interview with Fox that “[he is] never going to give up the phone business… we have a range of products after this and it’s actually quite exciting.”

The one certainty for BlackBerry is that it will continue to forge down the Internet of Things (IoT) path and is set to unveil BlackBerry Radar at the 2016 Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville, Kentucky this week.

According to BlackBerry, BlackBerry Radar “can help you manage your business with a completely integrated, comprehensive trailer management service, including a self-powered device, connectivity, and cloud-based apps.”

BlackBerry will reveal its Q4 earnings on Friday. It’s expected we’ll learn more about BlackBerry’s upcoming plans for 2016 when the company’s financial results are revealed.

[source]Financial Post[/source]

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