BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) plans to immerse itself deeper into the Android ecosystem with the release of two new smartphones. One of the smartphones will come with a full Touchscreen with the other one featuring a physical keyboard. Confirming the news, CEO, John Chen, said the devices should be ready for shipping later in the year.
Sinking Deeper Into Android
Pursuing growth opportunities on Android is becoming a norm, the Canadian company having suffered major headwinds on its own ecosystem. Launching two new Android handsets could be an indication that BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) is somehow convinced with the performance of its first ever Android phone, BlackBerry Priv.
Launched late last year, the flagship Android phone shipped 600,000 units last quarter. By industry standards, it is an underperformance. Samsung Galaxy S7 has already shipped 10 million since it made its debut in February. As it stands, BlackBerry has a long way to go if it is truly serious and confident about its prospects in the hardware business.
What is ahead For BlackBerry
The major undoing to BlackBerry Priv prospects is the fact that it is quite expensive given that it is competing with iPhones and Galaxys. BlackBerry may have to rethink its pricing strategy with the upcoming two new phones if it is to have any chance of reinvigorating its prospects in the business.
Chen has already shown his willingness to go the extra mile all in the effort of revitalizing BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY)’s prospects. Opting to do away with the company’ OS that has fallen to the wayside was a clear indication of his willingness to make tough decisions.
Switching to Android and focusing more on mid-range segments seems like the remaining option for the software giant. Enticing customers with high-end features with the upcoming phones will have to come into play as Android phones have become much better in the recent past.
A 4G enabled phone featuring a long-lasting battery, and a decent camera could help BlackBerry make a name for itself in the mid-range market segment. The company could also use its reputation on device’s security to gain an edge against other Android phones.
It is a do or die year for BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) on the hardware front. Depending on how it performs could determine whether it continues producing handsets going forward.