BlackBerry's software bet continues to pay off

The amazing turnaround for BlackBerry continues.Shares of BlackBerry were up in early trading Wednesday after ...

Posted: Mar 28, 2018 2:52 PM
Updated: Mar 28, 2018 2:52 PM

The amazing turnaround for BlackBerry continues.

Shares of BlackBerry were up in early trading Wednesday after the company reported earnings and sales that topped forecasts, led by growth in its software and services business.

BlackBerry has made the transition from a struggling hardware company to a successful software and licensing company under the leadership of CEO John Chen, who took over in late 2013.

It had to adapt since sales of its once iconic phones were plunging. BlackBerry couldn't keep up in a smartphone market dominated by Apple's iPhone and Google Android phones made by the likes of Samsung.

But hardware now accounts for less than 1% of BlackBerry's total sales. The company is making a big chunk of its money from licensing deals for other smartphone makers that run BlackBerry's software.

BlackBerry announced in 2016 that it would stop making its trademark phones -- once so popular that they were dubbed CrackBerries and were loved by Barack Obama, Kim Kardashian West and other superfamous people.

Instead, BlackBerry is outsourcing the production of BlackBerry-branded phones. The company is focusing more on making apps that are used on Android phones.

BlackBerry even has a new deal with Microsoft that will make it easier and more secure for more businesses to use Microsoft's cloud-based Office 365 apps on mobile devices.

Related: BlackBerry's turnaround is complete

"Partnerships are a big part of our strategy, especially when you are in the software business. It's what you have to do," Chen said in an interview with CNNMoney Wednesday.

The company has made a big bet on connected cars as well. Jaguar Land Rover recently announced it will use BlackBerry's QNX software for navigation and so-called infotainment services in new cars. Ford is another top BlackBerry automotive customer too.

BlackBerry also launched a cybersecurity tool called Jarvis at the Detroit Auto Show that will help automakers find security flaws in their vehicles. Chen said BlackBerry will continue to focus on the automotive market as a key driver (pardon the pun) for growth.

"The car is no longer just about bending sheets of metal. It's about code," Chen said.

Wall Street clearly loves the new BlackBerry as well. The stock is now up 14% this year despite the recent volatility in the broader market and the tech sector in particular. Investors are probably happy to hear that Chen isn't going anywhere anytime soon either.

BlackBerry announced earlier this month that Chen's contract as CEO has been extended through November 2023.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 307519

Reported Deaths: 7096
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto20772248
Hinds19888408
Harrison17489302
Rankin13311275
Jackson13097243
Madison9895210
Lee9856169
Jones8290160
Forrest7523146
Lauderdale7187237
Lowndes6262144
Lamar610584
Lafayette6027117
Washington5280132
Bolivar4769129
Oktibbeha455297
Panola4442103
Pearl River4419139
Warren4280118
Marshall4273100
Pontotoc416472
Monroe4057132
Union403675
Neshoba3987176
Lincoln3869108
Hancock372085
Leflore3468124
Sunflower329389
Tate322681
Pike3180104
Scott310572
Yazoo304368
Alcorn297764
Itawamba296776
Copiah292965
Coahoma289677
Simpson287484
Tippah284668
Prentiss275659
Marion265779
Wayne261341
Leake261073
Grenada254982
Covington254580
Adams245882
Newton244859
George237847
Winston225981
Tishomingo222067
Jasper219748
Attala213273
Chickasaw204857
Holmes186471
Clay182454
Stone179131
Clarke176876
Tallahatchie175240
Calhoun163230
Yalobusha158836
Smith158534
Walthall130543
Greene129433
Lawrence126223
Noxubee125933
Montgomery125542
Perry125138
Carroll120826
Amite120041
Webster113432
Jefferson Davis105432
Tunica102525
Claiborne101330
Benton97225
Kemper95226
Humphreys94332
Franklin81823
Quitman78916
Choctaw72817
Jefferson64828
Wilkinson64727
Sharkey49617
Issaquena1686
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 518899

Reported Deaths: 10712
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson753641487
Mobile37763798
Madison33859494
Tuscaloosa25266443
Montgomery23962565
Shelby23106238
Baldwin20631300
Lee15524165
Calhoun14284311
Morgan14139268
Etowah13662345
Marshall11957219
Houston10380278
Elmore9993200
Limestone9811147
Cullman9470188
St. Clair9426234
Lauderdale9215227
DeKalb8746181
Talladega8058171
Walker7087275
Jackson6754110
Autauga6723103
Blount6483135
Colbert6203130
Coffee5399112
Dale4767110
Russell428838
Franklin419982
Chilton4083109
Covington4053114
Tallapoosa3893146
Escambia387674
Dallas3527149
Chambers3499122
Clarke346360
Marion3065100
Pike305875
Lawrence295395
Winston272372
Bibb256258
Marengo248661
Geneva245875
Pickens232959
Barbour224755
Hale218775
Butler212266
Fayette208960
Henry187844
Cherokee182044
Randolph176941
Monroe171440
Washington164038
Macon154548
Clay149354
Crenshaw149257
Cleburne146041
Lamar139234
Lowndes136453
Wilcox124327
Bullock121340
Conecuh109028
Perry107926
Sumter102932
Coosa99228
Greene90734
Choctaw58724
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