Hardcore fans might find it hard to accept it, but this doesn’t change the fact that BlackBerry isn’t going to storm back and beat iOS and Android anytime soon. The company failed to win the hearts of consumers, and it’s now considering something rather radical: Making Android phones.
Just like Nokia before it, BlackBerry stuck to its own operating system even after it became clear that iPhone and Android have won the mobile battle. But unlike Nokia, which didn’t even want to try Android, BlackBerry is now willing to give Google’s mobile operating system a try.
Four sources familiar with the company’s plans have told Reuters that BlackBerry is indeed working on such a device. Using Android is apparently “part of BlackBerry’s strategy to pivot to focus on software and device management.”
Moving to Android doesn’t necessarily mean that BlackBerry 10 devices will be killed, and the company told the publication in a statement that it “remains committed to the BlackBerry 10 operating system, which provides security and productivity benefits that are unmatched.”
The rumored BlackBerry Android device would probably be a slider that would pack a touchscreen display and a slide-out physical QWERTY keyboard. The device would be released this autumn, sources said, with BlackBerry having shown it off on stage at Mobile World Congress in early March.
The company apparently wants to convince big customers that its BES12 system can be successfully used to manage and secure smartphones running rival operating system. Sources also said that the BlackBerry Android device would likely include patented features from the BlackBerry 10 operating system, assuming the company moves forward with these plans.