While BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY)‘s turnaround is more focused on its new mobile security software, dubbed BESS12, the Waterloo, Canada based technology company is not backing out from the smart phone space. In fact, the company is set to launch its five-inch display Blackberry Leap with a price tag of $275 this year, according to an article on The Wall Street Journal.
The new phone is modeled for young professionals who have a penchant for a touch-screen keyboard rather than the qwerty keyboard that accompanies most of BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY)’s devices. The device is only one of the four other models that are set to be released this year. They include a Porshe-branded Blackberry, a smartphone with a curved display and a keyboard, and also another device with a physical keyboard.
Although the mobile software business generates higher profit margins for BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY), the device business helps it to remain more relevant and attract more customers. The company is committed to drive its device business despite its global market share falling to less than 1%. John Chen, BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY)’s CEO has reiterated his unwillingness to abandon the device business, as long as it remains profitable.
Blackberry also recently announced the extension of its partnership with Samsung Electronics, which now includes the integration of its encryption and mobile-billing technologies into Samsung’s Knox security platform. The move is bound to attract more enterprise customers. BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY)’s software also has the added advantage of enabling its users to have both work and personal numbers on the same device. This facilitates the employer by reducing their bills as they only need to pay for the employee’s work-related calls, text and data usage on Samsung phones running on the Knox platform.
With a current market cap of $5.81 billion, BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) is down 7.9% over the last 52 weeks. The company is set to release its fourth quarter earnings on 27 March.
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