BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB) announced on Friday that it would not be hosting a Blackberry Live Developer Event in 2014. Mobile device developer BlackBerry had hosted an annual live developer event every year since 2002, but the company has decided to move in other directions under new CEO John Chen.
BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB) released a statement through MobileSyrup on Friday. “We’ve taken a look at how to best meet our goals with BlackBerry events, and today we’re announcing that we will not be hosting a BlackBerry Live conference in 2014. Instead, we’re planning to continue with an engaging lineup of smaller, targeted events taking place all around the world over the next 12 months. These events are designed with a greater focus on the specific business, developer, and partner audiences, and will allow you to get the most out of your attendance.”
In the statement, BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB) also said canceling the live developer event will allow it to focus on a number of more targeted events throughout the year, aimed at particular audiences. BlackBerry Live was largely focused on at developers, but it also gave management the opportunity to publicly discuss plans for the year and reveal them to a large and appreciative audience. Cancelling the major annual event has to be perceived as a tactical refocusing away from the need for marketing of new devices.
From hardware design to software development
The new CEO of BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB), John Chen, is a pragmatic sort. He, like many in the industry, sees the writing on the wall in terms of the future of the mobile device industry, and has decided it’s time for Blackberry to cut its losses and focus on its areas of strength.
Chen did not beat around the bush in discussing his plans for BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB) at the recent investor call with reporters following BlackBerry’s fourth quarter results. He offered a good bit of detail on his plans for restructuring BlackBerry’s lines of business. BlackBerry’s new manufacturing partnership with Foxconn was also a hot topic of conversation. Chen basically admitted the deal sees Blackberry take a back seat in hardware design and creation, allowing the company to focus on software development.