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Can New BlackBerry Smartphone Offerings Increase Unit Sales?

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BlackBerry smartphones only a limited success 

In the previous part of the series, we discussed how BlackBerry’s (BBRY) smartphone revenues continue to decline. The question now is will BlackBerry ever be able to grow its smartphone sales. The answer lies in the quality of its future line of smartphones.

Following the release of Passport and Classic last year, BlackBerry released Leap this April. Leap is now available in 22 markets across the world, and BlackBerry has plans to roll it out in a total of 46 markets. A few months ago, BlackBerry released the low-priced Z3 smartphone specifically for emerging markets (EEM). Each of these smartphones saw only limited success, which is why the firm’s shipments continue to decline, as the chart below shows.

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BlackBerry may struggle despite promise of new smartphones

BlackBerry now plans to launch its next version of the Passport smartphone, Passport Oslo, by the end of this year, according to a report from N4BB. The smartphone will have high-end specifications including a 2.2 GHz Qualcomm (QCOM) Snapdragon processor, a 13 Mp camera, 3 GB RAM, and a 3450 mAh battery.

The real problem for BlackBerry isn’t its product specifications—it’s the lack of apps that its ecosystem possesses. BlackBerry has already partnered with Amazon (AMZN) to offer its apps on BlackBerry 10 devices, but the number of apps on its platform still pales in comparison to those available for Apple (AAPL) iOS and Google (GOOG) Android operating systems.

For this reason, BlackBerry may consider adopting Android. For more on this topic, read Why BlackBerry Might Adopt Android as Its Operating System.

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