Remember how Blackberry was once the most admired company on the planet? Every professional or business executive used to have a Blackberry or wanted to have one. A Blackberry phone was the ultimate status symbol.
That was before the iPhone was launched in 2007 and the rest, as we all know, is history. Blackberry has been pushed out and nobody cares about the company anymore. Blackberry is all but dead and buried.
Blackberry is still alive, but in a different form. It is no longer a company that makes phones, but more of a software company. In John Chen, they have a very smart, technologically inclined CEO, who is like Steve Jobs in a lot of ways.
Going back to the year that signaled the end of Research In Motion, the company behind Blackberry, what Steve Jobs did was truly phenomenal. Nobody really expected Jobs to cannibalize his own product, the iPod and create a new product that would effectively kill iPod sales.
Back then, remember, the iPod was Apple’s #1 company. Only a genius like Jobs would kill his company’s #1 product to come up with something new and untested and that too in a highly competitive field that had clear leaders such as Blackberry and Nokia.
What happened later, everyone knows. Apple was transformed and the iPhone became one of the most important technological innovations in history. Research in Motion, the once proud and indomitable company that looked set to take over the world, was demolished.
Much has changed since those days. Today’s Apple is not the same innovative company that it was during Jobs’ time. They now have a very bureaucratic CEO in Tim Cook who has nothing whatsoever in common with Steve Jobs.
Apple in recent years has been witness to the death of the iPod, and the flagging sales of the iPad. The iPad does not seem to be such a hot product anymore. It is only the iPhone that is holding fort for the company. Even the iPhone sales have remained stagnant, with the iPhone X not really taking off as expected. New products like the Apple Watch have been embarrassing failures.
Also, with every country moving from 4G to 5G, there is much greater bandwidth than before and more and more people are now choosing cloud hosted applications rather than buy apps from the Apple app store.
This presents a unique opportunity for Blackberry. Blackberry is still a leader when it comes to security and safety of online applications. Even today, where security concerns are of the greatest importance such as in the government and the military, officials use Blackberry devices and systems, not iPhones or Android devices.
Blackberry does not make hardware anymore, but licenses other manufacturers to make Blackberry devices. Blackberry-licensed devices of today run Android, but they run it on top of a proprietary security layer. This makes phones that run on Blackberry far more secure than either Android devices or iPhone.
Also, Blackberry is based in Canada, which is a neutral country, which means neither the United States or China will have any objection if their government departments and private organizations make the switch to Blackberry. There is hence a good reason for a savvy investor to bet on Blackberry making a comeback.