BlackBerry: The time has come for ‘strategic alternatives’

In the early to mid-2000s, BlackBerry was the unmitigated champion of the mobile device marketplace. Business professionals across multiple sectors used the smartphones to send work emails and stay connected to the office like never before. This week, however, the end seems to have finally arrived for the tech giant.

In a press release from the company, Timothy Dattels, Chairman of BlackBerry's Special Committee of the Board, said a change was coming. "Given the importance and strength of our technology, and the evolving industry and competitive landscape, we believe that now is the right time to explore strategic alternatives," Dattels said.

That could mean a company sale, joint venture or strategic partnership is in the works. The special board committee has been created to look into these alternatives.

BlackBerry's woes started in 2007 when Apple released the iPhone, changing the face and functionality of smartphones. The touch screen, smoother user learning curve and a better internet browsing experience made it the preferred option among mobile devices. What followed was the creation of the App Store, which revolutionized functionality, and the iPad, which created a brand new mobile marketplace.

On top of that, new competition from Microsoft and Google—in the form of mobile operating system Android—has hit the shelves and BlackBerry was too late to adapt. It will be interesting to see what the future holds.

Despite this news, BlackBerry will always been known for helping to launch the mobile device revolution, especially at the enterprise level.