Tuesday 4 January 2022 was a day of mourning for legacy BlackBerry device owners since, as of this day, services for BlackBerry 7.1 OS and earlier, BlackBerry 10 software, BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.1 and earlier versions were permanently shut down.
Why did BlackBerry shut down legacy devices?
Back in the early 2000s, and more prominently, the early 2010s in South Africa, BlackBerry, a product of Research In Motion (RIM) was a status symbol. From a South African point of view, it offered users class status and reliability with its desktop-style keyboard and, perhaps, most important, the BlackBerry Internet Service (BIS) which was discontinued in 2013.
However, it seems the smartphone manufacturer reached a ceiling in finding new ways to enhance its product and, consequently, BlackBerry gave way to Apple‘s mammoth ascension as a dominant force in the market, next to Samsung.
“Today BlackBerry is focused on providing intelligent security software and services to enterprises and governments around the world,” the company revealed.
What services have been impacted?
From Tuesday, following the termination of support, “devices running BlackBerry 7.1 OS and earlier software, BlackBerry 10 software, and BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.1 and earlier software through either carrier or Wi-Fi connections will no longer reliably function.”
The tech giant further explained that legacy device users will:
- lack the ability to receive over the air provisioning updates;
- have no access to data usage;
- not be able to make or receive phone calls;
- not be able to send text messages; and
- not be able to make emergency calls
Applications like BlackBerry Link, Desktop Manager and Blend will also have limited functionality.
Here’s what will happen to your BlackBerry data
“When personal information is no longer necessary or relevant, BlackBerry will delete, destroy, erase, or anonymize your data,” the company says
Requests to delete personal data can be made to [email protected].
These devices will not be impacted
The death of this dynasty does not necessarily spell an end for the tech giant. The mobile company licences its brand to phone manufacturers who run the devices on Android.
TCL and OnwardMobility are two third-party manufacturers who supply BB phones on Android and these, according to RIM, will not be impacted by the shut down.
The only way users of these devices will be affected is when a “redirected email sent to a BB-hosted email address, or assigned an Enhanced Sim Based License (ESBL) or Identity Based License (IBL).”
BBM Enterprise will be available on other platforms, the company confirmed.