Blackberry’s cup of woes seems to be spilling over fast now that Facebook has also announced it is pulling the plug on the Canadian company’s beleaguered BlackBerry 10 operating system.
The trend started with WhatsApp that denounced support for BB10 platform earlier along with a couple of other platforms such as Nokia Symbian and a few other of the earliest Android and Windows versions which have already started to wean away from public memory.
Earlier, BlackBerry’s share of the global smartphone market has reduced to an almost non-existent 0.1 percent, a far cry from the heady days when the who’s who of the world business community would take pride in flaunting their latest BlackBerry handsets.
With demand for BlackBerry almost grinding to a halt, it is left to the fiercest of its supporters to keep the platform to continue maintaining a flickering presence at the least.
However, even those might have a hard time keeping up with their favorite BB handsets as they will have to revert to the web app to keep themselves abreast of the latest developments at Facebook, or for that matter, using the Facebook Messenger app. That, of course, will be lacking the deep system integration that a native app has to offer, which includes several niceties such as contact synchronisation, BlackBerry Hub integration or notifications and such. Similarly, sharing images on Facebook too will cease to be as simple as a native app makes for.
BlackBerry has termed the development as extremely disappointing but is still putting up a brave front in the face of mounting odds.
“We are extremely disappointed in their decision as we know so many users love these apps. We fought back to work with WhatsApp and Facebook to change their minds, but at this time, their decision stands (but let them know how you feel on social media, using the hashtag #ILoveBB10Apps),” stated BlackBerry Senior Marketing Manager Lou Gazzola.
On the last count, Facebook reported having reached a billion strong user base on a single day while its messenger service has a user base of more than 800 million. WhatsApp also has 800 million monthly active users on its rolls and is already counted as the de-facto medium of choice for messaging worldwide.
Meanwhile, BlackBerry too seems to be looking for greener pastures in that it had earlier launched its first Android smartphone, The Priv – as the smartphone is named – runs a heavily customized version of Android with its kernel written afresh to make it have the same levels of security that BB has always been known for.
The forked Android version has also been modified enough to allow for a more well-known of BB10 features to be available on the Priv as well. These include BlackBerry Hub, the security app DTEKT along with the BBM.
Interestingly, in spite of the Priv along with a few other Android-powered handsets that its Chief Executive John Chen has confirmed for launch in 2016, the company stated they still remain committed to the BB10 platform.