Manufacturer kills classic business smartphone
Blackberry stopped running support for its classic devices working on original Blackberry software on Tuesday, which means they will no longer be good for anything – other than throwing against a wall in a fit of rage.
Classic devices working on Blackberry software will not be able to send text messages, access the web, or make calls – even emergency ones.
Blackberry, which was once at the forefront of cutting-edge technology, has been losing the war against Apple and Android touchscreen devices for years. It has largely been out of the phone business since 2016, but has licensed its brand to phone manufacturers who produced devices running on Android software, including TCL and OnwardMobility. The latter is still working on its 5G Blackberry device, which was expected to come out in 2021 but was delayed for unspecified reasons. Blackberry Android devices will not be affected by the end of service.
The company originally proposed the classic smartphones’ decommissioning in 2020. In the meantime, it has been gradually shifting its focus to cybersecurity software and operating systems for cars under the name BlackBerry Limited.
By effectively killing the classic Blackberry smartphone, the company marks the end of an era. The phones, which sported a physical keyboard, were hugely popular in the late 1990s and early 2000s among professionals who needed the tools from a desktop computer to be accessible when working outside the office. Even former US President Barack Obama used a Blackberry, along with numerous other high-profile figures, Wall Street businessmen, and celebrities.
The social media community responded to the news by posting tributes, with Twitter users tearfully writing such things as “It was my secret love,” and “Thanks for the memories,” and posting pictures of their Blackberry collections.
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