All remaining BlackBerry enthusiasts are about to see their tiny keyboards become even more useless than before.
This article was first published on thebit.nz.
It’s the end of the road again for BlackBerry. Yes, you might think that said road actually ceased to exist in 2016 when BlackBerry Limited stopped making hardware, and even before that the tarmac seemed distinctly impassable.
But now every remaining BlackBerry enthusiast is ready to watch their tiny keyboards become even more useless than before. The company confirmed that on January 4, 2022, devices running BlackBerry OS 7.1 and OS 10 lost crucial services.
And while definitions of “crucial” may vary, this time we really mean it. You won’t be able to make phone calls, send texts, access cellular data, or dial 111. Well, technically, no one is stopping you from typing 111 on your little keypad, but nothing will happen when you try to connect the call. So you might as well use one of those Fisher-Price Chatter phones for all the good it will do (which, by the way, now has a Bluetooth version for some reason.)
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You might be able to use it over Wi-Fi, but even then there’s no guarantee that it will “work reliably,” which doesn’t sound ideal. “We thank our many loyal customers and partners over the years and invite you to learn more about how BlackBerry provides intelligent security software and services to businesses and governments around the world,” the company added, adding a little foot in the dish.
If you have a newer BlackBerry device that runs Android, this doesn’t apply to you, by the way. This means that any BlackBerry handset made after 2015 by BlackBerry Limited (which now makes cybersecurity software) or TCL Communications will continue to work… but probably not brilliantly, since the last one released was 2018’s BlackBerry Key2 LE.
After TCL’s BlackBerry handsets met with global apathy, the company opted not to extend the licensing deal, with OnwardMobility taking over the rights to the name. At the time of writing, the The official site still promises new BlackBerry 5G handsets before the end of 2021… a deadline that has now passed in New Zealand, but which could theoretically still be met elsewhere in the world.
Tick tock, OnwardMobility…