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Blackberry Era to end on January 4, company said in a statement

After January 4, BlackBerry handsets running the original operating system and services will no longer be supported, signalling the end of an era for the storied device that ushered in the mobile era.

According to BlackBerry Ltd.’s end-of-life page, handsets running its in-house software “will no longer be expected to reliably function” after Tuesday. BlackBerry Ltd., formerly known as Research In Motion, whose signature handset in the 1990s came to symbolise working on the move, said handsets running its in-house software “will no longer be expected to reliably function” after Tuesday.

The decision, which was first announced in 2020, effectively ends a line-up that is still popular in some parts of the world for its dependability and security.

BlackBerry handsets, with their physical keyboards, were once the go-to mobile device for professionals checking email and younger people communicating on the company’s proprietary platform. During the previous decade, the company’s attractiveness eroded as Apple Inc.’s iPhone and a wave of Android handsets with larger displays, sharper graphics, and more app options took over the market.

In 2016, the Canadian company transitioned to a software-only business, licencing its name and services to TCL Communication Technology Holdings Ltd., who continued to release smartphones until the arrangement expired in 2020. TCL devices ran on Alphabet Inc.’s Android operating system and will be supported until August.

However, nostalgia for the BlackBerry name made it one of the meme stocks of 2021, causing a big increase in its share price in January before a similarly dramatic drop.

“These devices will be unable to get over-the-air provisioning updates, and as a result, this functionality, including data, phone calls, SMS, and 9-1-1 capability, will no longer be expected to function consistently,” the company warned. “Applications will be limited in functionality as well.”

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