BlackBerry Hub+ Productivity Suite Now Available for Android Phones
The new DTEK50 includes built-in hardware security features like those in the earlier Priv, including encryption capabilities for all user and business information and data, according to BlackBerry. The handset also includes built-in malware protection as well as data backup, wipe and restore capabilities. Other included software allows users to control which apps get access to personal information or device features, such as the microphone or camera. The smartphone lets users manage their security and privacy options and services through a special DTEK app that provides automatic monitoring of the operating system and apps so they know when their privacy could be at risk, according to BlackBerry. In April, BlackBerry announced that it would launch two new lower-priced Android smartphone models later in 2016 in an effort to win back customers and increase sales after its flagship, high-end Android Priv phone failed to catch on with buyers as much as the company had hoped. The Priv, which BlackBerry targeted at enterprise customers, might have been priced too high at about $700 when it debuted in September 2015. Earlier in April, BlackBerry dropped the price of the Priv to $649 as it tried to increase sales of the device, which features both a touch screen and a slide-out physical QWERTY keyboard. BlackBerry's fall from dominating the enterprise smartphone market has been swift and stunning. In early 2006, before Apple's first iPhones appeared, half of all smartphones sold were BlackBerry models. By 2009, though, its share of the global smartphone market was down to 20 percent. The company continues to face growing competition from Apple, Samsung, Google and others.
The company has been having a tough time financially for some time. In late June, BlackBerry reported a net loss of $670 million for the first quarter of fiscal 2017, compared with a net loss of $238 million in the fourth quarter. The company's GAAP revenue was $400 million, while its non-GAAP revenue was $424 million for the first quarter.