Yikes, BlackBerry’s hardware decline is continuing, despite the company’s efforts to swing its phone business back in its favor. The firm announced Friday that it sold 600,000 phones during the fourth quarter. That’s… not a lot and, in fact, is worse than the company’s last quarter when it sold 700,000 units. Even worse, it’s far below the 1.6 million phones the company sold in the year-ago quarter.
It’s a bit depressing, especially since BlackBerry has been an iconic player in the smartphone business since the very beginning. It also did a great job with the BlackBerry Priv, which we praised in reviews. It’s possible that phone will start to swing sales now that it’s available on more U.S. carriers but, given the poor sales in Q4, it’s not looking like it will change a whole lot – especially in the face of flagships like the Galaxy S7 now on store shelves.
An analyst speaking with CNET, Current Analysis’ Avi Greengart, said “this quarter or the next could determine if BlackBerry remains a hardware vendor.” That is, if sales don’t change, we may see BlackBerry exit the smartphone business altogether.