BlackBerry boss confirms release of 4 new devices this year

BlackBerry boss confirms release of 4 new devices this year

BlackBerry chief executive John Chen has confirmed that the the company is set to release four new handsets over the coming year.

Pictures of the proposed new devices were leaked earlier this month, sparking fresh speculation that the firm was once again ready to challenge in the handset market.

Those claims have been confirmed by Mr Chen, who told attendees at the Kitchener Waterloo Chamber of Commerce that despite its success in providing software solutions, hardware was a key part of BlackBerry's plans for the future.

The firm has already enjoyed moderate success from the release of its Passport and Classic models – which were both released last year – although they only managed to make a modest impact on the firm's profitability.

The first of the four models set to follow those handsets is BlackBerry Leap, which has so far only been made available in selected markets around the world.

Other models include a slider-based handset, which was displayed briefly by the company earlier in the year and will boast a touchscreen display and a full QWERTY keyboard.

Reports have strongly suggested that the next model could be a modified type of Passport, featuring a Porsche design aimed at high-end users.

As well as the new models, Mr Chen claims the firm will also look to revamp its image, a comment carrying added weight given he had previously described BlackBerry as a software firm.

Mr Chen added that finances at the firm had stabilised under his guidance, stating it had bounced back from troubling times.

However, he stressed there was still plenty to be done in order to enhance growth at the company, with sales falling during the fourth quarter of the year.