BlackBerry Ends Production of Classic Smartphone

It was the device that launched a thousand carpal tunnel injuries among bankers, lawyers, and executives, but today, the classic BlackBerry smartphone is no more. The company confirmed yesterday that it will no longer manufacture the iconic BlackBerry Classic with its trademark tactile keyboard

The announcement comes just days after a memo from the U.S. Senate to its staffers saying that they will no longer be issued official BlackBerry devices. According to the memo, the Senate made its decision after BlackBerry told telecom carriers Verizon and AT&T that it was stopping production of all Blackberry OS 10 devices and therefore couldn't guarantee fulfillment.

However, in a blog post yesterday, Ralph Pini, chief operating officer and general manager for devices at BlackBerry, said that only the Classic would be discontinued. The other BlackBerry 10 OS devices, the Z30, Passport, Z10, and Q10, will continue to be made.

Surviving on Government Contracts

?EU?To keep innovating and advancing our portfolio, we are updating our smartphone lineup with state of the art devices,?EU? Pini said in his post. ?EU?As part of this, and after many successful years in the market, we will no longer manufacture BlackBerry Classic.?EU? Pini said the company will nonetheless continue to support the Classic and other BlackBerry 10 OS devices with continuing software updates, including the release of version 10.3.3 next month and a second update next year.

While the company will continue to produce models featuring physical keyboards for the time being, it looks as if its focus will increasingly be on Android devices as well as on its other phones with more typical software-based keyboards.

A Classic Ending

Although the familiar form factor of the BlackBerry Classic may seem antiquated when compared to the latest iOS or Android devices, the phone has long been popular among government staff members. In many cases, its...

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