BlackBerry Has Officially Pulled The Plug On Older Devices
The company is pulling the plug because it has been focusing exclusively on delivering enterprise software and services to enterprises and governments.
Long gone are the days when BlackBerry smartphones dominated the world of business with their characteristic QWERTY keyboards that made it possible for managers to bombard employees with text messages and emails at a much faster rate than phones with the old-school keypad allowed.
Now, older BlackBerry devices have turned from unused to unusable because the legacy services for BlackBerry 7.1 OS and earlier, BlackBerry 10 software, BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.1 and earlier versions are no longer available from January 4, 2022.
“As of this date, devices running these legacy services and software through either carrier or Wi-Fi connections will no longer reliably function, including for data, phone calls, SMS, and 9-1-1 functionality” stated the company in their announcement.
The company is pulling the plug because it has been focusing exclusively on delivering enterprise software and services to enterprises and governments since it discontinued its BlackBerry line in 2016 and changed its name from Research In Motion (RIM) to BlackBerry Limited.
The last mobile phone operating system released by RIM is BlackBerry 10, which became available in 2013 and reached its last version (10.3.3.3216) on April 4, 2018. Since then, Chinese electronics giant TCL released several BlackBerry-branded phones, but their reception was lukewarm at best.
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In August 2020, the BlackBerry brand changed hands again when it was picked up by OnwardMobility, a US-based company in the mobile security space. The company announced a new BlackBerry 5G smartphone with a physical keyboard, but it has already missed the advertised release date of 2021 by a few days, and there’s no indication that the smartphone will hit the shelves any time soon.
Indeed, it’s possible that OnwardMobility has realized that the demand for a smartphone with a physical keyboard simply isn’t there anymore because most consumers have gotten used to typing on increasingly intelligent virtual keyboards on their 6-inch and larger smartphone displays.
NEOM Airlines Is Saudi Arabia’s New, Tech-Centric Carrier
The airline will embrace advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence, and utilize high-tech propulsion systems by 2026.
Opening in 2025, NEOM is a $500 billion Saudi Arabian smart city that will be powered entirely by renewable energy. Now, Saudi authorities have announced that the futuristic metropolis will also be served by its own dedicated carrier — NEOM Airlines.
The service will begin operating in 2024 and embrace advanced technologies, including artificial intelligence and biometric check in. Aircraft will fly to and from NEOM Bay before moving to the soon-to-be-built NEOM International Airport.
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NEOM Airlines will focus on tourist, commercial, and residential travel and incorporate plenty of cutting-edge technology. Klaus Goersch, the airline’s CEO, revealed that existing aircraft will be retrofitted with existing technology on launch, but by 2026, an ultra-modern fleet will be in operation, “whether electric, hydrogen-powered, or supersonic”.
As well as modern, low-emissions power airplanes, NEOM aircraft will also be fitted with sleek, modern interiors, 6G Wi-Fi, large screens for every seat, plus gaming and chat technology.