Canadian Smartphone maker, Blackberry, has begun publishing an open letter in major publications globally in an attempt to reassure fans who are worried about the company's fate. This development comes only weeks after the company posted a net loss of $965m in its third quarter and has agreed to a $4.7bn sale deal with a consortium led by Fairfax Financial.
These are no doubt challenging times for us and we don't underestimate the situation or ignore the challenges," the letter says. "We are making the difficult changes necessary to strengthen BlackBerry." The missive also notes that Blackberry is debt free and has healthy cash reserves despite its weak performance in the smartphone market.
Once a dominating force in the smartphone market, Blackberry has seen its fortunes crumble over the last few years. The company came to power with its unique on-the-go email features during the 2000's,making its handsets a must-have for business executives. However, since 2008, it started loosing massive chunks of its market share to Apple's iPhone, and more recently to handsets powered by Google's Android.
In 2012, the company placed all its hope on the launch of new handsets powered by its Blackberry 10 OS, but the result was disappointing sales and a loss on account of unsold Z10 devices to the tune of $934 million.
Prompted by losses such as these, Blackberry has been forced to announce that it would trim its costs by about 50 percent, which would result in about 4,500 job cuts or 40 percent of its global workforce.
BBM for iOS and Android coming "within days"
Despite all this, the company has confirmed that its popular messaging app, BBM or Blackberry Messenger, will be coming to iOS and Android platforms soon. Frank Boulben, BlackBerry's chief marketing officer, told Reuters in an interview that the BBM app will launch on both iOS and Android "within days."
For the uninitiated, BlackBerry was forced to halt the recent launch of BBM for iOS after a beta version of its Android application leaked online, causing its servers to overload.