BlackBerry: A new year and a new start!

Last week, the US military announced that it would have a surge in "mobility" devices, including iPads, iPhones, and Samsung tables and smartphones.

On Tuesday the world's biggest defence spender announced it would buy 80,000 BlackBerrys, boosting the firm's share price rise by 9.36%.

The Canadian company has now seen its shares rocket by more than 60% from its lows last month, when it reported a quarterly loss of more than £2.6bn.

US President Barack Obama has been a BlackBerry fan

In response to the hefty hit BlackBerry said it would outsource production to Taiwan-based Foxconn.

Foxconn makes products for Apple in China and has come under repeated criticism for work conditions for its mainland employees.

Industry experts believe the outsourcing will now help BlackBerry concentrate on software and services - avoiding many of the risks of the volatile smartphone segment.

Last year, the company said it was considering a sale or other strategic move, but later scrapped those plans and told customers it was staying in the smartphone business.

On Tuesday it also announced plans to sell most of its Canadian property holdings as part of a new management strategic plan.

BlackBerry helped create a culture of mobile users glued to smartphones - and were once nicknamed "CrackBerrys" in reference to the addictive habit of checking emails.

The encryption system used by the firm was once seen as a benefit for many firms, including the White House administration.

But the firm lost its pre-eminent position as people swapped to iPhones and Google's Android software.

The company still has around 70 million subscribers worldwide, but most of these are using older handsets, with newer devices on the BlackBerry 10 platform unveiled a year ago failing to sell.

Source (Sky News)

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