Is Blackberry going Android for its new slider smartphone?

12 Jun 2015

Smartphone maker Blackberry may be equipping a new smartphone with Google’s Android software as it bids to grow from its current, consistent, 1pc market share.

Reuters reports that the BlackBerry 10, which the company thought could help it regain a part of its now long-lost smartphone audience, has not had the desired effect and an Android switch is the company’s next roll of the dice.

BlackBerry has, for a while now, been shifting its offering away from hardware, promoting its software and device management services instead.

“We don’t comment on rumours and speculation, but we remain committed to the BlackBerry 10 operating system, which provides security and productivity benefits that are unmatched,” said the company.

The company has struggled to persuade the public that its smartphones offer the right properties for mass sales, with that 1pc of the market share heavily dependent on corporate use. So pushing its BES12 management system is a must.

BlackBerry’s soft approach

“Two sources said that by launching an Android-based device of its own, BlackBerry would be sending a signal to skeptics that it is confident that the BES12 system can not only manage, but also secure smartphones and tablets powered by rival operating systems,” says Reuters.

BlackBerry’s BES12 is offered across Android and iOS, exemplifying the company’s business approach.

Back in January, amid the heated net neutrality debate in the US, the company’s executive chairman John Chen explained that, amid a consumer market full of people seeking greater control, BES12 can play a part.

Earlier this year rumours surfaced that Samsung was eyeing up BlackBerry as an acquisition, but this was later denied. It all circulates the later’s fall from grace, with this potential Android move just the latest in a line of moves attempting to regain its dominance.

“BlackBerry will probably use Android on an upcoming slider device that is likely to be released this autumn,” says Reuters.

BlackBerry image, via Shutterstock

Gordon Hunt was a journalist with Silicon Republic