Tech Rumors: BlackBerry to launch two Android devices this year?

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BlackBerry Vienna

BlackBerry is in the hot seat again as its rumored Android-powered smartphone continues to draw buzz. The company is reportedly working on new smartphones that runs on Google’s Android operating system rather than BlackBerry’s own mobile operating system.

The Android devices are codenamed Hamburg and Rome, respectively, according to the latest rumor, which comes from a BlackBerry-focused site BBCzech.

The details available for the rumored BlackBerry’s Android-based mobile devices are very light at this time, and the report does not reveal enough information not even specs. The only other information available for now is that Hamburg will launch in the autumn of 2016 while Rome will arrive later this year.

The shift to Android OS would be an about-face for the Ontario-based hardware company, which has shunned Android OS in a bet that its BlackBerry phones would be able to grab back share lost to Apple’s iPhone and a slew of Android-powered devices.

Reports said that Rome is the higher-end of the two devices, and its approach will be similar to that of the Priv, while Hamburg is said to be more something like a mid-range touch-screen device without BlackBerry’s signature keyboard.

BlackBerry was once the single most dominant force in the mobile enterprise world, and has set the gold standard for corporate communication. But after misreading the market turns and reacting late to the challenge threw by the Apple and Android devices, BlackBerry lost its hold on the smartphone market. BlackBerry tried to get back to mobile action, launched a new BlackBerry operating system called BlackBerry10, but again, the company missed its target and failed.

The future of BlackBerry phones certainly depends a lot on how the market react to the new Android-powered BlackBerry smartphone, if the Android move doesn’t sell well, BlackBerry might just exit the handset market.

Picture Courtesy: Zuofu/

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