BlackBerry seems to be considering equipping a future smartphone with the Android software for the very first time. The firm eschewed Android in order to focus on its BlackBerry 10 lineup of smartphones that was launched in an attempt to get back the lost market share to iPhone and some Android devices.
Some sources who are not permitted to discuss the matter publicly have claimed that the move to use Android in a BlackBerry smartphone is to focus largely on the software and device management. The firm once dominated the sales of smartphones, but now its market share is less than one percent.
It remains unknown if the move to use Android would end the BlackBerry 10 lineup that was launched in 2013. Though these smartphones have created much fanfare, they did not manage to compete well with the Android and Apple offerings mainly due to the lack of popular applications.
In an official email, BlackBerry stated that they do not comment on speculations and rumors. However, the firm stated that they will be committed to the BlackBerry 10 OS that provides unparalleled productivity and security features. Also, there has been no comment from Google regarding the same.
John Chen, the CEO of BlackBerry is banking on a new device management software called BES12 that lets government and corporate clients to manage the BlackBerry devices and others based on iOS, Android and Windows on their internal networks. It is convincing that the firm’s device management software can work on multiple platforms.
A couple of sources suggest that be launching an Android smartphone, BlackBerry would send a signal to skeptics that it is sure that the BES12 system can manage and secure smartphones and tablets that are powered by challengers in the operating system market.
BlackBerry might use Android on a slider device that could be released this fall, claim a few sources. This slider is likely to combine a touch screen display and a physical keyboard. In fact, BlackBerry showed one such slider device shortly at the MWC 2015 tech show in March. However, not much details of this smartphone were revealed by the firm.
It seems like BlackBerry is hoping to grab a position in the Android market that is dominated by the devices with large displays and physical keyboard. This device might lure the older BlackBerry keyboard fans who want to use larger app options that are provided by the Android ecosystem.
A few sources suggest that BlackBerry is planning to launch an Android device with patented features in the BlackBerry 10 OS. Back in March, the firm announced its plans to deliver its patented security, communication and productivity tools to a mobile device running on Android, iOS or Windows.