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  1. Main Feature of Giveaway Product: Rip and Converter Encrypted/Non-encrypted DVD video to BlackBerryConvert All kinds of video files to BlackBerry video formatExtract/Convert audio to BlackBerryEdit VideoGiveaway Period: Nov.6 to Nov.12 Get it here: http://videoconverterfactory.com/blackberry-video-converter/ B)
  2. With BlackBerry 10.2.1 currently being tested internally at BlackBerry, a few screenshots have leaked out allegedly showing the Google Play Store running on the BlackBerry 10 platform. A new Android Runtime is expected on the next build of BlackBerry 10 which would allow the Android flavored application store to be available to BlackBerry users so that they can download and install Android apps and other content. For BlackBerry 10 users, having the Google Play Store on their device would mean no more sideloading of Android apps. And this could quickly address one of the major shortcomings of the BlackBerry 10 platform which is the lack of apps. Could this lead to improved sales for the beleaguered company, or will those who want to run Android apps just stick to buying an Android phone? Alas, this is just a rumor for now, and as much as it makes sense, and as badly as BlackBerry 10 users might want this, we need to take this with the proverbial grain of salt until BlackBerry makes it official. In the meantime, for you dreamers, check out the slideshow below. Source: PhoneArena
  3. BlackBerry rejected approaches from Apple, Microsoft, Lenovo and others to break up the ailing Canadian company and split its assets, insiders claim, with the firm’s patent portfolio apparently of particular interest. Both Microsoft and Apple were eager to acquire BlackBerry’s wireless patents, sources told Reuters, but the firm’s board decided a piecemeal sell-off was not in the interest of all stakeholders. Those stakeholders considered were not only shareholders in BlackBerry, the insiders say, but customers, suppliers, and regular employees. Different companies – also including Cisco and Google – have reportedly been interested in various parts of BlackBerry, including its hardware division and its enterprise software expertise. “Some of these assets are so intertwined they could lose value in a company break-up” a source told the news site, with the BlackBerry board cautious about unforeseen costs should the company be split. “Winding down some of BlackBerry’s businesses would have created liabilities,” another source echoed, “including in its commitments with suppliers, and would have weighed on the monetization of the company’s intellectual property.” Instead, BlackBerry opted for a $1bn investment deal from Fairfax Financial Holdings, Canso Investment Counsel, Mackenzie Financial, Markel Corp, Qatar Holding, and Brookfield Asset Management. In the process, CEO Thorsten Heins was dumped, and the company avoided any government involvement that might have occurred had foreign firms attempted to buy parts of its business. “The board felt the notes issue offered BlackBerry the most near-term certainty and the best chance for a turnaround,” a source claims. Of course, that turnaround could still prove elusive, and the $1bn investment might not be enough to reverse BlackBerry’s fortunes. A split-up of assets could still one day seem the best course of action, the sources warned. Original Article
  4. Rumors surrounding the upcoming BlackBerry update have made quite a stir in recent days, as it was speculated that it would allow access to the Google Play store to install Android apps. A BlackBerry spokesman has recently quashed allegations that BlackBerry is planning any sort of Google Play access. Nevertheless, insiders have revealed that the update will include the Android runtime, which means that you’ll be able to install and run Android apps. The official line from BlackBerry to n4bb goes like this: “We can confirm that there is no planned support for Google Play on BlackBerry. BlackBerry World remains the primary source for trusted and curated BlackBerry applications, and we continue to support open standards and open source tools so BlackBerry developers can continue to create apps on any of the development platforms we support.” Folks over at the CrackBerry forums have revealed that the Android runtime will, in fact, be included with the upcoming BlackBerry 10.2.1.1055 update, which will allow you to side load Android .APK files and installs them right from the file manager. You can also use various .APK downloaders to make the task easier, and you obviously won’t have to convert them to BlackBerry’s native .BAR files beforehand. Currently, Android widgets won’t be supported, but we’re hopeful that complete Android implementation will be available before long – BlackBerry stock would certainly appreciate it. Original Article
  5. Just a couple of days ago, i showed you some screenshots that appeared to show the Google Play Store running on BlackBerry 10. While the platform can run certain Android apps, it cannot run any Google Play services or apps approved by Google. Thus, seeing the Google Play Store running on BlackBerry 10 seemed to indicate that a new level of cooperation had been reached between Google and the Canadian based OEM. But a statement released on Tuesday from the troubled manufacturer (that would be BlackBerry), says that there is "no planned support" for Google Play on BlackBerry. The statement goes on to point out that BlackBerry App World is still the place to go for apps and content for your BlackBerry device. It really is too bad for BlackBerry and its ardent fans. Having the Google Play Store available on BlackBerry 10 could have opened up a whole new world for the platform. Somehow, we get the feeling that this might have been a trial balloon that was shot down by developers who have their blood and sweat invested in BlackBerry App World. "There is no planned support for Google Play on BlackBerry. BlackBerry World remains the primary source for trusted and curated BlackBerry applications, and we continue to support open standards and open source tools so BlackBerry developers can continue to create great apps on any of the development platforms we support." - BlackBerry statement Original Article
  6. Google’s Android operating system managed to grab exactly 81.0 percent smartphone share in the third quarter of 2013. Rounding out the top four smartphone operating systems were iOS at 12.9 percent, Windows Phone at 3.6 percent, and BlackBerry at 1.7 percent. The latest quarterly figures come from IDC, which summarized its findings in the following chart: IDC estimates total Android smartphone shipments worldwide reached 211.6 million units, letting Google’s mobile operating system power four out every five of the 261.1 million smartphones that shipped last quarter. The figure allowed Android to push past the 80 percent market share mark for the first time. IDC noted that while Android moved forward as a whole, the vast majority of its vendors still struggle to find meaningful market share. Samsung accounted for 39.9 percent of all Android shipments for the quarter, while the rest of the vendors either saw single-digit market share or even less than 1 percent (as was the case for the majority). Apple’s iOS saw its market share decline during the past quarter, despite reaching a new high for third quarter volumes. IDC naturally blamed the fact the world was waiting for the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c, which will likely drive record volumes, market share, and year-over-year growth in the last quarter of the year. Windows Phone posted the largest year-over-year growth worldwide of any of the leading operating systems (up 156.0 percent), once again largely thanks to Nokia, which accounted for 93.2 percent of all the Windows Phone-powered smartphones shipped during the quarter. On the other hand, BlackBerry recorded the largest year-over-year decline among the leading operating systems during the quarter, due to softer demand for its new BB10 operating system and despite demand for its older BB7 devices within emerging markets. It’s worth noting that IDC’s estimates are quite close to those of Strategy Analytics’ figures for the quarter. The latter had slightly higher percentages for Android, iOS, and Windows Phone, but showed the same overall trend: Android up, iOS down, Windows Phone up, and BlackBerry down. Original Article
  7. Yesterday, BlackBerry starting rolling out its BlackBerry 10.2.1 update. In the U.S., Verizon customers sporting the BlackBerry Z10 are the first to receive it. And, as you will be able to see from the video below, using the Nova launcher allows Android 4.2.2 to run on a BlackBerry Z30 powered by the BlackBerry 10.2.1 OS. While not everything is working as it would on an Android model, the YouTube app does open after a slight delay. This gives BlackBerry users a proper YouTube app for the first time. Currently, 'Berry users pressing the YouTube icon on their phone are re-directed to the mobile website of the streaming video service. Back in November, we told you that the BlackBerry 10.2.1 update would include an improved version of Android Runtime, allowing more Android apps to run on a BlackBerry 10 phone. Thanks to the update, APK files do not have to be converted and can be installed directly onto an updated BB10 phone. Obviously, certain core features of Android cannot be installed and trying to download the Google Play Store results results in it crashing. Could this be the beginning of a subtle move from BlackBerry 10 to Android for the troubled manufacturer? So far, new CEO John Chen hasn't expressed any desire to switch, but remember that this guy does have a proven track record turning around dying companies. That means that he can make the hard decisions when required to. For now though, expect no changes. Source
  8. In the heat of its financial struggles, BlackBerry just got a breath of fresh air thanks to the US Department of Defense, which has placed an order for 80,000 of its smartphones. As part of its smartphone expansion strategy, the Department of Defense is also giving 1,800 undisclosed mobile devices to its employees including "Apple iPad 3 and iPad 4, iPhone 4S and iPhone 5, Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablets and Samsung Galaxy S3, and Motorola RAZR," the statement reads. The news caused quite a stir in the stock market, as the company's stock shares peaked to $10 per share. In the end of last year BlackBerry shares were hovering around the $7 mark. In spite of BlackBerry losing ground in the consumer market, the Canadian phonemaker has historically been the preferred partner for government agencies and security companies due to its smartphones' enhanced security features. In May last year, BlackBerry successfully certified its entire BlackBerry 10 family of devices to the Department of Defense security standards. This resulted in the Pentagon approving a contract for nearly half a million BB phones. The news, however, isn't good enough to get the company out of the financial swamp it's currently in. The company is still on track with its plan to put the majority of its Canadian real estate in sale-leaseback. More than 3 million square feet of the company's commercial real estate is destined to be rented and sold in the future. Source
  9. BlackBerry Product Manager Michael Clewley's BBM Channel has tipped one of the features coming to BlackBerry 10.2.1. The Canadian OEM will add a "Floating Action Bar" above the keyboard. BlackBerry says that some BlackBerry 10 users, not used to the Gesture based UI, were finding themselves lost on certain pages. Perhaps the most important action being added with the feature is the back button, although there are other common actions that will be offered by the bar. After the update comes to your BlackBerry 10 device, you will have to turn it on in "options". The floating bar will be available on specific screens, and with some pages you will have to hide the keyboard so that it won't cover up action bars used on other applications. Surely many of you BlackBerry 10 users have had times when you wished that a back button was available. Now, it looks like your wish will come true once BlackBerry 10.2.1 is released. The update is also expected to bring an improved Android Runtime, which should allow more Android apps to run on your BlackBerry 10 device. Source
  10. BlackBerry is working on a version of BBM for Android phones powered by the Gingerbread build of the open source OS. The messaging app will thus be available for the 21% of Android users still using Android 2.3.3-2.3.7. The app is now in external beta testing and is expected to be launched in February. BlackBerry says that it is excited to have millions of additional Android users using BBM. Currently, the app requires subscribers to have Android 4.0 or higher. On its blog, BlackBerry indicates that it is offering this version of BBM in response to demand for it from those Android users sporting a Gingerbread powered handset. While the post didn't mention it, we assume that the BBM for Gingerbread users will also offer BBM Voice, BBM Channels and BBM Video. These will eventually be offered to the original BBM for Android and BBM for iOS apps. BBM Voice allows users to make calls to other BBM members for free around the world. BBM Channels is a group of discussion and chat rooms, each covering a particular subject. BBM subscribers will be able to open their own rooms featuring their own topics, and corporations will also be sponsoring rooms of their own. BBM Video will allow subscribers to video chat with each other. Source
  11. BlackBerry has just announced the latest 10.2.1 update for its BlackBerry OS. It brings lots of new features, and is compatible with all BlackBerry 10 smartphones. The rollout has already started so you can update your device right now. Here is the complete official change log:Customize Pinch Gesture to Filter BlackBerry Hub – BlackBerry Hub lets you access all your messages and notifications in one place. A new feature lets you instantly filter the message list in the Hub. You can customize the Hub to show only Unread Messages, Flagged Messages, Draft Messages, Meeting Invites, Sent Messages or Level 1 Alerts. Once the filter criterion is set, you can simply activate it with a pinch gesture on the Hub’s message list.Simplified Phone Experience – The phone includes a new incoming call screen that lets you swipe to the left to answer or swipe right to ignore a call. New intuitive icons allow you to instantly silence the call, or send a Reply Now response through BBM, SMS or email that you can’t answer the phone right away. You can choose from a list of standard automated responses or respond with a personalized note.SMS and Email Groups – You can now create SMS and email groups for more efficient broadcast communications.Actionable Lock Screen Notifications – You can now "Tap to open" a message that appears on the lock screen, letting you respond to an important message much quicker or to check messages more discreetly.Picture Password for Quick Unlocking - You can quickly unlock your phone using a combination of a picture and a number (0-9) of your choice, which you place at a particular point on the image. When you try to unlock the phone, the picture will appear along with a grid of random numbers. To unlock, simply drag the grid so the number you selected overlays the particular point on the image.Customizable Quick Settings Menu - You can now customize what appears on the Settings menu, which includes features such as being able to quickly change the Brightness of the smartphone’s display, toggle various network connections, and access the built-in flashlight. The Settings menu also includes a toggle that lets you instantly switch between your Personal and Work perimeter.Offline Browser Reading Mode - You can now save the current web page you’re on for later viewing, even if you are offline or without an Internet connection.Preferred Contact Sync – You can now choose the sync source for your Contacts ensuring you always have the most up-to-date contact details. When adding a new contact you can designate which sources you want the contact Source
  12. Last month, we wrote about many of the changes expected in BlackBerry 10.3, but at the time we only had some screenshots to show you of the updated OS. Now, we can show you a video that shows off some of the changes that BlackBerry users can expect when the next update is made to BlackBerry 10. One of the most eagerly awaited features is BlackBerry's virtual personal assistant. Called Intelligent Assistant, this app does the same things that Siri, Google Now and Cortana do. At least it is supposed to, when it works. On the video, it was clear that Intelligent Assistant was neither intelligent or much of an assistant on this early version of BlackBerry 10.3. Many of the new camera features are discussed, such as the panoramic feature. The latter has received high praise from those who have tested this setting. A self timer is now included for selfies, along with settings for HDR, and resolution. Speaking about the camera, there is a new photo gallery for your pictures. Also included is a new Automatic Stories feature that splices together pictures and video by time and location. The idea is that you can create a visual story. The home page is much more attractive with those ugly grey backgrounds in back of app icons removed in place of a tiny drop shadow. Talk about addition by subtraction! BlackBerry Hub now features a flatter UI in BlackBerry 10.3. The accent color in Hub has been changed to orange from blue. Another color change is found with the web loading bar, which is now green. Our earlier story mentioned the new focus on Black and Red in BlackBerry 10.3, and many of the applications sport red accents. Instead of giving everything away, why not take a look for yourself. Simply click on the video below to see some of what the next build of the BlackBerry 10 OS will bring. Keep in mind that this particular version is a couple of months old, which means that you can pretty well bet that some changes have already been made. Source
  13. BlackBerry reveals when to expect BBM for Windows Phone Prior to that, BlackBerry had given no indication that it was even interested in launching software for Windows Phone, the rival platform that has pushed it into fourth place in the smartphone market. Indeed, as recently as January, the company reiterated that it had "no plans" for Microsoft's mobile OS. Now, though, those plans are very much in the works, but the exact release date remains ambiguous. The latest information, which comes via TechCrunch, was revealed by BlackBerry CEO John Chen in a company earnings call this week. Chen said that the app is targeted for "Fiscal Q2" - the second quarter in the company's fiscal year - indicating that it could arrive as early as May 2014, or as late as July. Chen also said that BBM will be pre-loaded onto Nokia X Android handsets and certain Lumia devices in selected markets, once BBM finally launches on Windows Phone. Source: TechCrunch via WMPowerUser
  14. Blackberry’s Messaging Service, BBM, has been made available for non-blackberry devices for a while now. Now the application will be packing some new features that may bring in some new users and keep current ones excited. The first of the new features is something that doesn’t seem like it should have been left out for so long: the ability to share photos in group chats. Blackberry has also upped the size of the files that you’re able to share using the application: from 6MB to 16MB. Blackberry has also made the sizes of their emoticons bigger, as per customer demand. No date has been scheduled for when the new features are going to roll out, but stay tuned. Source
  15. BlackBerry has released their BBM application for the Windows Phone platform. The app is beta for now, so you will need an invite to be able to use the app on your Windows Phone device. The app will be open for everyone but until then, this is only for those with an invite for the private beta. Download Link BBM for Windows beta Source
  16. There’s good news and bad news for executives in Redmond today — Windows Phone’s market share has edged above BlackBerry’s, but the overall size of Microsoft’s slice of the pie hasn’t budged. According to the latest data from ComScore, Windows Phone now accounts for 3.2 percent of handsets in the United States, with BlackBerry lagging behind on 3.1 percent. Dig deeper into the figures and the news isn’t so encouraging for Microsoft. That 3.2 percent market share is the same as it was last October, so Windows Phone hasn’t made any inroads into the iOS/Android stranglehold. BlackBerry’s share fell from 3.6 percent, and it looks like it’s the iPhone that has taken up the slack. Android remains the most widely used mobile operating system in the U.S., seen on 51.7 percent of handsets (down 0.5 percent since October). iOS comes in second with 41.6 percent (a rise of 1 percent over the last three months). The market continues to expand, so Microsoft did sell more handsets during the previous quarter, but it will be disappointed not to have made more of an impact in terms of overall share. Elsewhere in the ComScore figures, Facebook was the app with the widest reach, appearing on 77.6 percent of mobile phones running iOS or Android. Google Play was second (52.4 percent) and YouTube came in third (49.7 percent).Google and Facebook also dominated the list of sites accessed via mobile browsers. For BlackBerry, the dark times continue — earlier in the week CEO John Chen gave the company a 50/50 chance of surviving, saying that he plans to have the firm profitable again by March 2016. Microsoft, meanwhile, will be pinning its hopes on the 2014 range of Nokia Lumia handsets, including the recently leaked Lumia 630. Source
  17. Live on stage at Nokia World 2013, WhatsApp CEO Jan Koum announced the instant messaging service now has 350 million monthly active users. That's up by 50 million since August, when the network announced it had hit 300 million. Koum also announced that some 250,000 users per day are registering for WhatsApp using Nokia devices — including Symbian, Asha, and Lumia handsets — over 7 million per month. source
  18. About a month after the first attempt failed, BlackBerry is planning on trying once again to get BBM for iOS and BBM for Android available for users of those two platforms. On Monday, BlackBerry crowed about the 1.1 million Android users that installed an unreleased version of the app back in September. It was that unofficial version, along with a number of bogus BBM apps put up in the Google Play Store, that made BlackBerry's task too difficult to complete at the time. Meanwhile, more than 1 million Apple iPhone users have side loaded BBM on their phone. According to the beleaguered Canadian manufacturer, the best way to download BBM on your iOS or Android phone is to visit BBM.com from your iPhone or Android browser. Install the app, enter your email address and BlackBerry will send you a message when you are at the "front of the line" and can use BBM. You can follow the line at @BBM on Twitter If you already signed up with BBM.com, you can start using BBM immediately. BlackBerry says its developers have been working around the clock and made some upgrades to BBM during the past month. This is a great idea from BlackBerry because instead of going to your phone's app store and putting up with a number of bogus BBM apps, you are going straight to BlackBerry to install it. The app is now from the Apple Store and Google Play Store. -- download links -- BBM Android BBM iOS What do you think about the BBM? B) source
  19. BlackBerry may be having problems at home, but on the other side of the world BlackBerry Jam Asia 2013 is in full swing with some exciting news about the company’s popular messaging service. BBin reports that the Waterloo company will launch BBM on Windows desktop computers, after unveiling the software at the expo in Hong Kong, though there’s no set release date at this point. BBM was scheduled to launch on Android and iOS devices over the past weekend, marking the service’s expansion beyond BlackBerry’s own hardware. However, the release was quickly cut short due to technical issues with no word on when it might re-launch. The company’s most recent setback clearly isn’t enough to slow down BBM’s expansion. The messaging service is one of the company’s few remaining valuable assets, and bringing it to desktop computers will help give BlackBerry an edge over competing apps like WhatsApp, which only works on mobile devices. The company still has to face off with iMessage, Facebook Messenger and Google Hangouts, however, all of which work on both mobile and desktop, and have massive built-in user bases. SOURCE
  20. Nokia has struggled to get into the US market for years now, but it seems that its hard work is finally starting to pay off. Counterpoint Research reports that in Q3 of this year Nokia leapfrogged several makers to reach the fourth spot among smartphone vendors in the US. This sounds less impressive when you look at the numbers - Nokia holds a smidgen over 4% of the market. But you have to look deeper - in Q2 this year, Nokia was at a 1.4%. It took it almost year to get to that point, in Q3 2012 Nokia barely registered at 0.7%. So in three months Nokia more than doubled its market share and is now ahead of former leaders like Motorola, BlackBerry and HTC. Counterpoint attributes this success to Nokia’s carrier exclusivity strategy, which is finally starting to work. Beyond Nokia, the US smartphone market is very homogeneous - Apple and Samsung are nearly even with a third of the market each. Apple has a 0.1% lead but has barely grown in the last year, while Samsung has gone 10 points up from 26.6% in Q2 2012. The next biggest vendor is LG in third place with 8.6%. source: gsmarena
  21. BlackBerry has just announced the rollout schedule of the OS 10.2 firmware update. BlackBerry Z10 and Q10 and Q5 are the devices eligible for upgrade, while the Z30 is running on 10.2 out of the box. The BlackBerry 10.2 update brings a new Priority Hub, BBM Video with Natural Sound feature, messages preview from any app, better keyboard, easier sharing options, lock screen notifications, better calendar and reject a call with SMS/BBM option. BlackBerry 10.2 launches for the BlackBerry smartphones in Africa, Asia Pacific, Canada, Europe and the Middle East this week. Latin America will be getting the update in November, while USA will follow at the begging of the winter. The update rollout also depends on if your device is unlocked SIM-free or carrier-locked. If you got your Z10/Q10 on a contract you may have to wait a few more weeks to get you phone up to date. source
  22. We've seen a steady stream of potential suitors for BlackBerry in recent months, but unnamed sources are now claiming ex-Apple CEO John Sculley is looking into taking control of the company. The Globe and Mail reports that Sculley, who famously helped oust Steve Jobs from Apple in the '80s, is working with partners in "exploring a joint bid" for the troubled Canadian smartphone maker. Although he refused to confirm or deny the rumor, Sculley has long been a fan of the company. Speaking to The Globe and Mail, Sculley says "there's a lot of future value in Blackberry," but that "without experienced people who have run this type of business, and without a strategic plan, it would be really challenging." Other companies reportedly interested in BlackBerry include Lenovo, Cisco, Google, and the company's founders. The only confirmed bid so far came from insurer Fairfax Financial Holdings, which offered $4.7 billion. Although Fairfax's bid was for the entire company, BlackBerry isn't against splitting up its various divisions to ensure its recovery. While its smartphone sales have slumped in recent years, the manufacturer's enterprise operations have fared better and would likely appeal to a broader range of companies. source : theVerge
  23. BlackBerry's BBM app was downloaded 10 million times within 24 hours, but at least on Android, some of its many positive reviews seem to come from a less than savory source. Blogger Terence Eden looked through more reviews and found more evidence that somebody was astroturfing the Play Store. In addition to the sheer numbers he found, at least one person seemed to have accidentally copied and pasted more of the text than intended: "Dear Mr Ahmed, please post the following comment on the new BlackBerry Messenger APP..." Fake reviews are a frequent issue across many sites, and a September crackdown resulted in fines for 19 companies. More recently, Samsung was fined for hiring commenters to talk up its own products online and leave negative comments about those of its competitors (allegedly HTC.) BlackBerry did not immediately return our request for comment, but a spokeswoman responded to Eden, saying the company had nothing to do with it. "We have recently been made aware of a number of potentially fake five-star reviews of BBM for Android on Google Play," she said. "We do not approve of or condone such activities and are committed to working with Google to resolve this." Unfortunately for BlackBerry, the reviews cast some doubt on the 10 million download number it touted earlier this week. There's no reason to believe BlackBerry's count isn't correct, but astroturfed comments could also mean not everyone downloading the app is a fan of BBM. It doesn't help that at this point, it's virtually impossible to tell how many fake reviews there actually are. Over the past couple of days, the text has become a meme of its own, and a cursory look at the site shows plenty of people with parodic variations — some of which are plausible enough that they add even more confusion. If BlackBerry wants to resolve the issue with Google, it's going to have to address more than just the actions of the spammers. BlackBerry has responded, once again saying that the reviews were uninvited and entirely unwelcome. "We have been made aware of a number of potentially fake reviews of BBM for Android on Google Play, with ratings anywhere from one to five stars. We have no knowledge of how these reviews were created or populated. We do not approve of or condone such activities. There are also many genuinely great and useful reviews from our new BBM users on Google Play. We would like to encourage our fans and users to continue to provide true assessments of the BBM experience through the proper channels." As BlackBerry notes, the reviews varied in stars, so they haven't necessarily skewed the overall score, though once again the parody reviews make it hard to figure out exactly how fake reviewers rated it. BlackBerry also affirms that the download number is correct, and I've clarified above — there's no sign that the company gave inaccurate information, but an astroturfing campaign makes it more difficult to tell how much positive response was genuine. source: theverge
  24. Today was always going to be a momentous day for BlackBerry, with a looming deadline for its proposed takeover deal with Fairfax Financial Holdings. As it turns out, the full takeover isn't taking place, but the company is going to receive an investment of $1 billion from Fairfax and a group of other institutional investors as it seeks to steer a new course. That will involve some major reshuffling at board level, starting with CEO Thorsten Heins, who is stepping down to be replaced by interim CEO John S. Chen. In the wake of the news, BlackBerry's already battered stock price has taken yet another blow, falling more than 18.5 percent in pre-market trading. Chen, BlackBerry's new interim leader, comes with strong credentials. He most recently played an instrumental role in turning around the fortunes of Sybase, a company that was once in a similarly distressed state to BlackBerry's current plight. His experience in the mobile enterprise business will be an asset and could potentially point to the future direction of the company. John Chen is also taking up the role of Executive Chair of BlackBerry's board, immediately taking on a great deal of both power and responsibility. Barbara Stymiest, the present Chair, comments in the company's press release to thank Thorsten Heins for his contributions over the past six years and to welcome the incoming CEO, describing Chen as "a distinguished and proven leader in the technology industry." Heins' departure and Chen's appointment together mark the conclusion of BlackBerry's review of strategic alternatives. Prem Watsa, Fairfax's CEO, takes a prominent role as Lead Director and Chair of the Compensation, Nomination and Governance Committee. source: theverge
  25. According to ABI Research, 438 million handsets and 244 million smartphones shipped during the 3rd quarter of 2013. Samsung's share of the smartphone market grew to 35%, while Apple saw its share stay level at 14%. On the platform numbers, BlackBerry is down to its lowest point at just 1.5% of worldwide shipments. Windows Phone was the big mover once again, showing solid growth up 165% year-on-year, to finish at 4% of global shipments and the number three platform. Of course, Nokia essentially is the market for Microsoft, making up 95% of Windows Phone shipments. Android is still the top of the pile with its share of shipments growing to 80.6% of the market. ABI is also saying that based on the Q4 revenue guidance provided by Apple, the company is expecting to ship 53 million iPhones during the holiday quarter. And, if that turns out to be correct, Apple is looking at a big drop in Q4 shipment market share. It could drop all the way to 18.7% market share which is down from 22.6% in Q4 2012. source: phonearena
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