BlackBerry phones that run BlackBerry 7.1 and BlackBerry 10 will stop functioning on January 4, 2022.
BlackBerry has shut down its offerings to BlackBerry 7.1 and BlackBerry 10 devices on the 4th of this day, January. The company has been informing its users.
While not surprising, however, the closing of BlackBerry software and services on the devices is the beginning of an era for smartphones. The shutdown means that the tiny percentage of users who use BlackBerry devices will not be able to access information and make phone calls and send text messages. BlackBerry Link, BlackBerry Desktop Manager, and Blend Blend will only function in a limited capacity beyond the date.
In 2012, just five years since the iPhone came out in the market, BlackBerry’s market share dropped to single digits, and it was forced to fight for third place against Nokia and Microsoft’s defunct Windows Phone OS. The following year, Microsoft acquired Nokia, and its Windows Phone Lumia line had outstripped BlackBerry’s market share of 2.9 percent of global smartphones shipped.
However, in 2012 BlackBerry was able to ship more than 11 million smartphones each quarter. Even with the positive release of BlackBerry 10 Z10, the brand’s image didn’t quite make it to a mobile world.
In 2015, BlackBerry released its initial Android smartphone called the Priv. It brought back BlackBerry’s reputation in security. It also had its famous keyboard underneath an e-touchscreen that could slide. BlackBerry later launched the less expensive DTEK50 Android after cutting the cost of its Priv.
BlackBerry, led by its CEO John Chen, announced in 2016 that it would be shutting its hardware development internally to concentrate on services, software, and cybersecurity.
BlackBerry in 2017 announced that it would offer at least two years of additional support to BlackBerry 10, the latest version of BlackBerry. It also notes that it has extended its support until January 4 in 2022. This is an “expression of thanks” to existing customers.
Today, the shutdown affects BlackBerry’s Enhanced Sim Based Licensing (ESBL) or Identity Based Licensing (IBL), BlackBerry hosted email addresses, BlackBerry Link, BlackBerry Desktop Manager, BlackBerry Blend as well as the remote wipe and lock service that it offers, BlackBerry Protect.
It is believed that the BlackBerry Messenger app for enterprises and consumers will continue work after the cut-off date for Android or iOS devices.
In the present, BlackBerry focuses solely on enterprise cybersecurity, and in September, Chen declared that the company had reached an agreement to sell its patent portfolio of mobile phones.