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BlackBerry discontinues the BlackBerry Classic

Although it was recently revealed that Blackberry is working on three new Android smartphones, the company has announced that it will discontinue production of its iconic BlackBerry Classic smartphone.

In 2014, BlackBerry launched the BlackBerry Classic as a replacement for the Q20 which ran the company's popular BlackBerry Operating System. The device has a design that is very similar to the smartphones the company produced during its heyday with a built-in QWERTY keyboard and a touchscreen.

The BlackBerry Classic however, ran the latest version of its OS, BlackBerry 10. Despite discontinuing the device, BlackBerry has said that it will continue to support BlackBerry 10 devices by means of software updates. Version 10.3.3 of the OS will arrive next month and the next update will be released next year. Though with the company planning three new Android smartphones and discontinuing the BlackBerry Classic, it seems that the end of BlackBerry 10 is certainly within sight.

Chief operating officer and general manager, Ralph Pini explained the reasoning behind the company's decision: “For BlackBerry, and more importantly for our customers, the hardest part in letting go is accepting that change makes way for new and better experiences. When I took on the role as the GM for Devices, I spoke about three critical elements for the success of our devices business. First was expanding choice for customers. Second was leveraging our unmatched experience and capabilities in security. Third was building on the BlackBerry pedigree.

“These are the tenets that help keep us focused and the reasons why we are committed to the success of both BlackBerry 10 and Android devices. To keep innovating and advancing our portfolio, we are updating our smartphone lineup with state of the art devices.”

BlackBerry has shown that it is still committed to BlackBerry 10 for now. However the company's latest iteration of its OS was never able to gain back the market share that it lost to Android and iOS.

The Company's first Android smartphone, the BlackBerry Priv was met with reportedly lukewarm sales and the decision to discontinue the BlackBerry Classic while planning to release three new smartphones running Android offers a great deal of insight into its future plans.

Image Credit: Svetlana Dikhtyareva / Shutterstock

Anthony Spadafora
After living and working in South Korea for seven years, Anthony now resides in Houston, Texas where he writes about a variety of technology topics for ITProPortal.