BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB) may not immediately start producing Android-based smartphones. But the company’s CEO John Chen acknowledged the potential for tapping into other ecosystems. Speaking at the Code Conference, Chen said the Canadian company now has 80% chances of survival. He said in March that the company had 50% survival chances. Many on the Wall Street have written off BlackBerry, saying it’s a lost case.
BlackBerry is neither dead nor dying
However, its latest low-cost Z3 smartphone has been a hit in its target market Indonesia. The device sold out on the first day of its launch. BBM adoption rate for Android and iOS has also been above expectations. BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB) plans to launch the Windows Phone version of its messaging service later this year. It has eliminated the inventory risk by partnering with Foxconn Technology Co Ltd (TPE:2354) to manufacture smartphones. Could it be that the Waterloo-based company is on the road to recovery. At least John Chen thinks so.
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John Chen admitted that not everything is rosy at BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB)’s headquarters amid continued losses and shrinking market share. But he said the company is neither dead nor dying. He expressed confidence his team is capable enough to “save the patient.” Chen didn’t clearly stated that BlackBerry would adopt Android OS for its future smartphones. But he did acknowledge the importance of tapping into other ecosystems.
BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB) CEO admitted that his predecessor Thorsten Heins got distracted by trying to appeal to the masses all at the same time. Chen said Heins cast his nets a little too broadly. The company is expected to launch new smartphones in the fourth quarter of this year. The new handsets will have bigger screens, full keyboard and old productive features.
While Chen is trying to revive BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB), research firm IDC estimates the company’s smartphone shipments to plunge 50% this year to 9.7 million units, including the recently launched Z3 in Indonesia. It’s global smartphone market share is expected to slip to 0.8% in 2014 and 0.3% by 2018.
BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB) shares surged 5.09% to $7.66 at 12:07 PM EDT on Thursday.