Chen explains why BlackBerry is still in the smartphone-making business

These days, iPhones and Android smartphones are dominating the smartphone market. Although BlackBerry has returned to profitability, it still has a lot of catching up to do. This makes a lot of us wonder why the Canadian smartphone maker is still in the smartphone-making business, when it can easily focus more on its security platform. BlackBerry CEO John Chen explains why it still in smartphone game.

Blackberry CEO John Chen poses for a portrait in Toronto March 26, 2014. BlackBerry Ltd reported a smaller-than-expected loss on March 28, 2014 as new chief executive John Chen slashed costs, but a 64 percent drop in revenue underscored the challenge he faces in turning around the struggling smartphone maker. The Canadian company, which has lost most of the smartphone market to Apple Inc's iPhone and gadgets powered by Google Inc's Android operating system, has laid off thousands and agreed to sell most of its real estate. Chen said he expects to be cash flow positive or neutral by the end of the current fiscal year, which runs to early March 2015. He does not expect to turn a profit until sometime in the following fiscal year. Picture taken March 26, 2014.     REUTERS/Mark Blinch (CANADA - Tags: BUSINESS SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY HEADSHOT)

In an interview with USAToday, Chen was asked, “You’re not just competing with the Apples of the world, but also security companies.”

Chen answered, “This is the basic building block on everything we do. And this is the major differentiation of the company. It’s starting in the software and the server that manages all these devices — not only our device, but also iPhone and Android and Windows. We also made our device more secure than everybody else’s. A lot of people ask me why I’m in the device business. First, it’s a good business to be in if you can make money. Second, it’s our first entry point of security. If we can secure the device, it makes securing the software and the data management and the collaboration and file sharing and content and pictures and videos and everything that much more easier. So this is why all the governments in the major developed countries are using our devices. You can see the heads of state using our devices.”

Do you think BlackBerry should remain in the smartphone-making business, or do you think the company should focus on something else? Let us know what you think through a comment on our Phones LTD Facebook page.

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