Two weeks ago, a rumour suggests that US startup company OnwardMobility has cancelled its ownership of the Blackberry name, as well as the development of a new smartphone under the brand. Unfortunately, this has been officially confirmed by the company, which also announced its imminent closure in a statement earlier today.
To recap, the startup picked up the rights to develop and release new Blackberry devices back in August 2020. Prior to that, the phone brand itself parted ways with its then-partner, Chinese company TCL, which have developed its phones since 2016. OnwardMobility originally planned to release a new 5G-enabled Blackberry smartphone last year, but failed to deliver this promise.
“It is with great sadness that we announce that OnwardMobility will be shutting down, and we will no longer be proceeding with the development of an ultra-secure smartphone with a physical keyboard,” the company wrote in the statement. “We share your disappointment in this news and assure you this is not the outcome we worked and hoped for.”
OnwardMobility did not provide any explanation to why it had cancelled the project and decided to shut down entirely. Ironically, its announcement of closure arrives a month after the company denied earlier rumours of cancellation, and even assured that the phone’s development was still on track despite encountering “various delays.”
While the world won’t be seeing another Blackberry phone anytime soon, the brand itself is actually holding strong in a different field: cybersecurity. Though it no longer focuses on developing in-house hardware for the mobile market, the company has offered its branding to third-party phone manufacturers as part of its business strategy. That being said, only time will tell if the Blackberry name will be featured on mobile phones ever again.
(Source: OnwardMobility [official website])