Having enjoyed such total dominance in the ’00s, BlackBerry has had some pretty devastating years since then. The Canadian company once had a whopping 50 percent of the US market and 20 percent of all global phone sales.
The Blackberry Messenger (BBM) continued to become a hit with the younger generation, while its ability to send email on the go made it an indispensable device for business users.
But then everything changed when Apple launched its iPhone. Within a few years of its release, the world became obsessed with touchscreen smartphones, with Apple’s iPhone quickly outperforming the BlackBerry and setting those devices on its back legs.
The company did its best to keep up with competitors like Samsung, Motorola, and Nokia, and even switched to Android in later models to win back customers, but sales never bounced back to their glory days.
Now BlackBerry appears ready to give it another try with smartphones, although this time they will be launched through a company called Onward Mobility.
This little-known mobile security company says it is now home to BlackBerry and promises to bring new 5G-enabled devices to market by the end of the year.
“We see a real need for a 5G BlackBerry, Android smartphone with a physical keyboard and a flagship,” said Peter Franklin, CEO of OnwardMobility, in an interview with PCMag.com.
Though details remain under wraps, the Letsgodigital team just released pictures of a device that they say could come next from BlackBerry.
Called the Evolve X2 5G, this phone gets an eye-catching all-screen design with a display that curves around the sides of the case.
There’s also the brand’s signature checkerboard pattern on the back and what appears to be a quad-rear camera system that could include a wide-angle and telephoto lens.
Letsgodigital speculates that the Evolve X2 will be equipped with a headphone jack, a fingerprint scanner under the display and Qualcomm’s flagship Snapdragon 888 processor.
Of course, this is just a rumor at the moment and while the renders look impressive, it is unclear whether BlackBerry will launch an all-screen phone that will give up the famous physical keyboard.
BlackBerry’s new boss has made it clear that he wants to keep the keyboard, so we’ll have to wait and see what’s next.
If Onward Mobility sticks to its word of a rollout in 2021, we may not have to wait long.