There was a time – not too long ago – when BlackBerry ruled the smartphone market. Many technologies introduced by the BlackBerry paved the way for other smartphone manufacturers to build on their ideas and develop phones that were in sync with modern-day technology. Back in the day, most people who wanted to own a high-end phone ended up getting a new BlackBerry for themselves. The iconic full keyboard, which was developed by and associated with the company, had become very popular and its utility was recognized widely by different segments of smartphone users.
While BlackBerry will always be known for being one of the pioneers of modern phone-based technology in the world, the company couldn’t really catch up with the ever-evolving technological space. This resulted in it exiting the smartphone industry. After suffering from monumental losses over a long period of time, BlackBerry made an exit from the smartphone industry in the year 2016. After doing so, it channelized its energies towards developing security software, among other things. It licensed its smartphone brand to TCL Communications. A while later, TCL Communications was bought by a relatively new company called OnwardMobility.
According to a report published online and other Canada based publications, BlackBerry has recently sold as many 90 smartphone technology patents to the China-based technology company Huawei. At the recently organized JPMorgan Online Chase investor conference, the media reached out to Steve Rai, CFO of BlackBerry, and asked him if the news was indeed true. Rai confirmed that the reports were true.
So far, there has been no information about the content of the patents that have been sold. In the year 2014, BlackBerry launched the business unit of BlackBerry Technology Solutions. Since then, BlackBerry has been working diligently towards selling its 38,000 patents.
General wisdom suggests that the patents acquired by Huawei do not seem to have any connection to smartphones. That is primarily because TCL Communications is now in charge of BlackBerry’s smartphone brand. One does not know whether BlackBerry would give any confirmation about this business transaction in the future or not.