Manufacturer Axes Phone Business For Services Push

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In October 2015 BlackBerry released its first smartphone running Google's Android operating system - which featured a keyboard that slid out - rather than its own BB10 software.

The firm strongly hinted earlier this year that it would make such a move - touted for several years now by analysts - if its mobile business didn't start to show signs of life.

The last BlackBerry phone to be manufactured by the company was the Priv, the company's first Android-powered device, released in November previous year. The handset part of the business created around $105 million for the company.

The company plans to shift hardware development to partners by February 28, when the company's financial year ends.

The Canadian company is now focusing on making software and will outsource the manufacture of hardware to other companies.

"I am pleased to welcome Steve Capelli as our new Chief Financial Officer", said John Chen, Executive Chairman and CEO of BlackBerry.

"We are reaching an inflection point with our strategy", said Chen in a statement.

The Blackberry brand will be seen on devices, but via licensing, and not for the handset design.

BlackBerry also announced second quarter results revealing it tumbled into the red with net losses of 372 million USA dollars (£286 million) against profits of 51 million U.S. dollars (£39 million) a year earlier.

BlackBerry reported a net loss of $372m for the three months ending 31 August, compared to a profit of $51m in the same period past year.

It wasn't all bad news, though. In Q2, the company more than doubled the software revenue year-over-year and delivered the highest gross margin in the company's history. BB Merah Putih, which is led by Indonesian telco, PT Tiphone Mobile, to source, distribute and promote handsets with our secure Android software and the BlackBerry brand in Indonesia, our strongest market.

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