BlackBerry is gearing towards big strategy shift as it wants to focus on its key customers – corporations and government entities. As part of that plan, the new CEO John Chen says the company’s upcoming phones will “predominantly” have physical keyboards, Bloomberg is reporting.
The Z10 and Z30 obviously failed to impress the general public, though it’s not like BlackBerry is moving a ton of Q10 and Q5 units. In fact, the company keeps making most of the money from selling its legacy products. The problem is way more complex and as far as I can tell – it has little to do with the form factor.
While many hard-core BlackBerry fans can’t imagine living without a physical QWERTY keyboard, I’m sure they would be willing to adopt an all-touchscreen device as long as it delivers on other fronts. And it’s not necessarily related to the number of apps. Rather, it’s related to the number of KEY apps like Netflix and Instagram. Moreover, many of the hot accessories announced this week won’t be able to communicate with BlackBerry smartphones. The Canadian company should be doing more on that front, assisting smart watch makers in making their devices compatible with BlackBerry OS 10.
Still I do understand sticking to BlackBerry’s traditional form factor. Competing in the “all-touchscreen space” is much harder, and rather out of reach for BlackBerry, with the likes of Samsung, Apple and Microsoft having much more money to put behind their products (and platforms).
It, however, remains to be seen whether the “QWERTY path” is the one that will get BlackBerry back on its feet…