BlackBerry Signs Long-Term Smartphone Agreement With TCL

BlackBerry branded smartphones will be made and sold by TCL from now on
BlackBerry handsets back

17 December, 2016

Today, the company has officially announced that now it will be TCL Communication, the company behind Alcatel brand of mobile devices, which will design and build smartphones with BlackBerry's branding.

At TCL Communication, we are committed to creating the best portfolio solutions, while ensuring the quality support to consumers and enterprise users who trust the integrity of the BlackBerry device and the brand's security leadership, coupled with the Android platform. BlackBerry CEO John Chen has already promised earlier that the company is releasing its final home grown device before terminating its hardware business. Apparently, the agreement will also see the company take care of selling the phones as well as offering customer support, just in case anything goes wrong. The company in question is TCL, the Chinese multinational electronics corporation that also sells mobile devices under the Alcatel brand.

Well, nearly. There's a few notable exceptions in the form of Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, India and Indonesia, where separate licensing deals are said to be being negotiated, according to Bloomberg.

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This news comes fairly hot on the heels when BlackBerry announced that it'll stop manufacturing and designing handsets after suffering a loss amounting to $372 million back in September, saying that it'll depend on partners for the hardware side of things. Together with BlackBerry's smartphone software platform, this partnership will strengthen our position in the global mobile market.

A deal signed in September between BlackBerry and Indonesia's BB Merah Putih gave the latter the rights to manufacture and sell the devices in the Southeast Asian country, which is BlackBerry's largest handset market. TCL wound up manufacturing BlackBerry's recent DTEK50 and DTEK60 smartphones, and could be the manufacturer behind a rumored upcoming BlackBerry keyboard phone.

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