Life support

BlackBerry News: BlackBerry withdraws life support for a once-must-have business smartphone

BlackBerry Ltd is ending service for its once-ubiquitous business smartphones, which were worn by executives, politicians and legions of fans in the early 2000s.

The move marks the end of an era when phones, with tiny physical QWERTY keyboards, pioneered push email and the BBM instant messaging service.

Former US President Barack Obama, one of its most famous users, made headlines in 2016 when he was asked to give up his BlackBerry and replace it with an unnamed smartphone.

Blackberry fell out of favor with users with the advent of Apple’s touchscreen iPhones and rival Android devices. In recent years, the company has moved into making cybersecurity software and in-car operating systems.

Social networks are inflamed with tributes. One Twitter user remembered it as a “fabulous machine” and hoped the company’s phones would be revived.

In a document released in 2020, the company said it would take steps to decommission legacy services for BlackBerry 10 and BlackBerry OS operating systems and added devices running on them would no longer be supported and may not be able to receive or send data, make phone calls or send messages reliably.

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A U.S. judge on Monday denied the company’s request to dismiss a lawsuit, saying it defrauded shareholders by inflating the success and profitability of smartphones using BlackBerry 10 OS, and said the class action could go to trial this autumn.

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