BlackBerry to sell legacy smartphone IP for $600m
The Canadian software company – formerly known as Research in Motion (RIM) – will receive a license back to the patents being sold which relate primarily to mobile devices, messaging, and wireless networking.
In a release issued today the company added that it will license the patents and that the deal won’t affect any of its products or services.
The firm added that any patents that were essential to its current core business operations in cyber security would be excluded from the deal.
In September 2020, the company behind the iconic phone and keypad – which first rose to prominence in the early 2000s – announced that was now focussed on software and was decommissioning all its legacy services.
However, CEO John Chen has said that the firm was keen to realise the value of its intellectual property and was reported to hold around 38,000 patents in its library.
Last year the firm confirmed that it had sold ninety of its smartphone patents to Chinese tech firm Huawei.
Some of BlackBerry’s patents are believed to reflect key innovations developed by the company during its heyday such as the presentation of text and images on devices depending on its physical orientation as well as the geotagging of photos.
At the beginning of this year BlackBerry officially decommissioned the use of its smartphone software – meaning that classic devices running on the company’s operating system will no longer work.
Newer Blackberry devices running on Android software continues to work for the time being.
Once popular among CEOs, President Barack Obama and celebs including Kim Kardashian, Blackberry launched the last version of its operating system in 2013 and ceased the manufacturing of its own smartphones in 2016.
Since then, the Canadian based firm has made a successful pivot into the cybersecurity software market and in 2019 bought AI based cybersecurity company Cylance for $1.4billion.
In its new guise BlackBerry’s core customer base includes enterprise, government, healthcare, financial institutions, and the automotive industry.
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