The announcement from BlackBerry comes just a day after the U.S. Senate decided not to use Blackberrys anymore, switching over to Samsung Galaxy S6 and iPhone SE handsets. The Classic in any case had few takers and it probably didn't add any value to the BlackBerry brand anymore.
BlackBerry set to fight it out with three Android phones this year
"Sometimes it can be very tough to let go. For BlackBerry, and more importantly for our customers, the hardest part in letting go is accepting that change makes way for new and better experiences," said Ralph Pini, Chief Operations Officer at BlackBerry. "To keep innovating and advancing our portfolio, we are updating our smartphone lineup with state of the art devices. As part of this, and after many successful years in the market, we will no longer manufacture BlackBerry Classic," he added.
Earlier this year, WhatsApp announced that it will stop supporting all BlackBerry 10 phones by the end of the year. “While these mobile devices have been an important part of our story, they don't offer the kind of capabilities we need to expand our app's features in the future,” said WhatsApp through a blog post. Facebook followed suit in March, forcing BlackBerry's Senior Marketing Manager Lou Gazzola to write a letter to BlackBerry fans. "We are extremely disappointed in their decision, as we know so many users love these apps. We fought back to work with WhatsApp and Facebook to change their minds, but at this time, their decision stands. Despite this, we have worked hard to ensure that our end-users have the best experience in light of this decision, and we are continuing to search for alternate solutions," he wrote.
BlackBerry to launch two Android phones this year, says CEO
As an alternate solution, BlackBerry decided to launch the Priv, a peculiar smartphone with a slide-out keyboard, Android 5.0 Lollipop OS on-board and BlackBerry Enterprise security. As per latest leaks, BlackBerry will release three new phones this year that will run Android OS and one of them will feature a physical keyboard. If the trend continues, then the days of BlackBerry 10 OS are well and truly over.
While the Priv did not fare too well, BlackBerry's upcoming flagship phone, code-named Argon, will offer phone buyers a good alternative to existing premium smartphones. It will reportedly arrive featuring a 5.5-inch Quad HD display, the latest Snapdragon 820 processor, 4GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage and 21-megapixel and 8-megapixel cameras. It will also bring in a fingerprint sensor, a USB Type-C port for quicker data transfers and fast charging and a powerful 3,000 mAh battery. Given that there are plenty of premium options available in the market, pricing could be a key factor if BlackBerry wants to get anywhere with the Argon.