It’s such a tough yet easy question to answer. BlackBerry seemed to have it all, but in 4 short years they lost the market and the fan base. But what happened?
Market share loss
It has been said for a long while now, but success as it’s know is definitely now over for BlackBerry. As of today the total market share for the company has just dropped to effectively 0.0%. Things were looking bad last year, in the final quarter of 2016 BlackBerry had only shipped 207,900 phones, whereas Apple had sold 77 million in the same time.
Before the iPhone and the big rise in smartphones, BlackBerry was the only phone you’d get if you were doing business. It was one of the first devices to support email on the go, with a full keyboard in a phone.
iPhone and 2007
It’s well documented that the main reason for the decline in sales for BlackBerry is the iPhone and Android phones. But interestingly BlackBerry still managed to sustain growth after June 2007, which is when the first iPhone went on sale. For two years after the iPhone went on sale, growth did stay consistent for the Canadian tech firm. For context, the market leader in 2007 was Nokia.
In 2007, BlackBerry had 9.6% market share, in 2008 16.6.% and in 2009 19.9% – but unfortunately, after 2009 which is when the iPhone really boomed in popularity with the iPhone 3Gs and then BlackBerrys’s share then collapsed.
By 2011 the effects of Android and Apple on the market were taking affect. By this time BlackBerry barely made up for anything in the market. Combined iOS and Android equated for 99.6% of the entire global smartphone market, with the rest being Windows, other and BlackBerry sat at 0.2%.
What is BlackBerry doing in 2017?
In September last year, BlackBerry announced that they wouldn’t make their own phones anymore, instead using third party companies and partners to manufacture any new phones.
Some of the staple BlackBerry products are gone and the official line up has reduced to just four models, two of which run on Android. The Classic and Passport are the only phones which still use the BlackBerry OS. Just poking around the website, its clear they are now looking at other options. BlackBerry Messenger is still an active platform as is IoT and Enterprise software. But apart from those things, it’s unclear to what is next for the company.
BlackBerry lost interest with consumers because better products were launched when the company was at such as high point in success, they were caught off guard and were incredibly slow to react to the changes and when they finally did, the end result never lived up to the offerings from Google and Apple.