*UPDATE* – In regards to Lulwani’s statements regarding the company’s support of BlackBerry OS 7, the company had an official statement: “BlackBerry intends to support the BlackBerry operating system indefinitely. Any comments to the contrary are not correct.”
In the last earnings report, BlackBerry revealed that a whopping 3.2 million BlackBerry 7 devices were sold, versus only 1.1 million BlackBerry 10 smartphones.
It was clear that either the lack of certain core features or price points for BlackBerry 10 smartphones were not garnering the shift the company expected.
Managing Director of BlackBerry India, Sunil Lalwani, recently gave an interview discussing the company’s future. Lalwani acknowledged the company’s fault with BlackBerry 10’s release, saying “The inherent new features of BB10 had to be clearly articulated to end-users, which wasn’t done well, leading to issues like inventory build-up of the Z10, but after cutting the price, sales have picked up again.”
Software and services accounted for 60% of BlackBerry’s revenue last quarter, according to Lalwani. This is why BlackBerry will primarily focus on such ventures and leave little focus to devices.
BlackBerry will seek to cutting costs of current BlackBerry 10 devices, with the Q5 expected to receive a price cut by January in India. Lalwani says the company will no longer focus on the entry-level market with its next devices and has no future plans to re-enter the tablet space after the PlayBook.
With BlackBerry 7 smartphones still selling better than BlackBerry 10 devices, the company plans to support BlackBerry 7 until December 2015. “Then we will discontinue sales of older BB devices, and provide exchange offers and upgrade offers for existing BB 7 users, to move to BB 10 platform,” said Lalwani.