Blackberry faces tough market challenge

As Blackberry announced a planned sale of the company last week, the hope of a brand rebound appears to dim in developed countries even as growing and fierce competition in the emerging markets gives no comfort either, writes ADEDEJI ADEMIGBUJI.

Last week, smartphone maker, Blackberry announced its decision to turn round its struggling smartphone business with the formation of a special board committee to explore options, which includes a possible sale.

The new board committee, headed by Blackberry board member, Timothy Dattels, will focus on exploring “strategic alternatives” for Blackberry, which could involve different business models, possible joint ventures, strategic partnerships or even a sale of the company.

“Given the importance and strength of our technology, and the evolving industry and competitive landscape, we believe that now is the right time to explore strategic alternatives,” Dattels said.

While these developments caim amidst amid Blackberry’s dwindling share of the smartphone market in recent years at the global market, the company, according to National Mirror, findings appears to be losing its market share in Nigeria.

While some smartphones such as Techno, Samsung, Nokia have become a strong force that have brought some innovations that Blackberry has failed to match in terms offering long lasting battery and ability to improve its messaging offerings, the market appears tense for company.

Currently, analyst said Blackberry in Nigeria market have continuously lost ground to Apple, Samsung, Techno and other devices running on Google’s Android operating system while messaging applications like WhatsApp among others have enhanced massive migration from BBM chat especially as Blackberry’s weak batteries have remained a major threat for its growth.

While National Mirror findings reveal that upwardly mobile individuals are beginning to discard BlackBerry for iPhone, Samsung S III, Nokia Lumia and others, the new Blackberry Z10 and BlackBerry Porsche have enjoyed slow acceptability despite the status symbol price tag on it.

On the declining sales, a store keeper at Slots said, “Before, when you have 10 people come to buy a phone, about seven would ask for a BlackBerry, but lately, it’s a 50/50 case of buyers asking for the different smartphones.”

By 2008, the company was atop the mobile smartphone world with their revolutionary phones. However, the reverse in the case now as the company has witnessed a massive layoff of employees, and a plummeting stock value.

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