Canadian firm BlackBerry Ltd said it will take steps to decommission legacy services for its 10 and OS operating systems, adding that devices running on them will no longer “reliably function” after yesterday (January 4).
By this announcement the company has shut down support for both its BlackBerry OS and BlackBerry PlayBook OS, effectively rendering the mobile and tablet devices defunct. Beginning from yesterday (January 4, 2022) the two operating systems will cease some of their core functions, including making phone calls, text messaging, or even emergency calls to 9-1-1.
BlackBerry said that WiFi and mobile data may also become “unreliable,” with apps like BlackBerry Link, BlackBerry World, BlackBerry Protect, BlackBerry Messenger, BlackBerry Blend and BlackBerry Desktop Manager all having “limited functionality.”
The announcement probably doesn’t come as a surprise, given that the company had already closed down its app store back in 2019 along with the once-popular BBM service. Despite shifting to Android in 2015, BlackBerry failed to ride the revolutionary wave of smartphones after the dawn of the original iPhone from Apple, and has slowly shifted from a hardware company to a software producer.
BlackBerry pulled the plug on service for its once ubiquitous business smartphones, which were toted by executives, politicians and legions of fans in the early 2000s.
The move marks the end of an era for the phones, which sported a tiny QWERTY physical keyboard, pioneered push email and the BBM instant messaging service.
Former US president Barack Obama, one of its most celebrated users, made headlines in 2016 when he was asked to give up his BlackBerry and replace it with an unnamed smartphone.
Blackberry lost favour with users with the advent of Apple’s touchscreen iPhones and rival Android devices.
In recent years, the company pivoted to making cybersecurity software and embedded operating systems for cars.
The once indispensable smartphone and fabulous machine had lagged behind the times. Some analysts however believe that hopefully it will be resurrected one day in a different configuration as time changes.
One Twitter user reminisced it was a “fabulous machine” and hoped the company’s phones would be resurrected.
In a document published 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.