How did BlackBerry fare at MWC 2016?

How did BlackBerry fare at MWC 2016?

BlackBerry is a company that has seen some dramatic changes recently, but the firm took a rather reserved back seat during this year's Mobile World Congress.

Much of the talk had been about whether BlackBerry would use the event to launch what has become known as Vienna, widely believed to be the next Android device to be lined up by the company.

However, rumours of its release at MWC never came into fruition, sparking fresh speculation around the device's release and what specs it will carry.

Rumoured specs

Reports suggest that the Vienna will be a mid-range device and will be a cheaper option compared to the Priv.

The intensified rumours around the Vienna have lead some to predict that the device will carry 3 GB of RAM, although the phone's hardware may well contain a chipset that is not comparable to BlackBerry's first venture onto the Android platform.

The Priv contains a Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 chipset and it is, therefore, likely that the version on the Vienna will be an older one.

However, traditional BlackBerry fans will be excited by the return of the company's trademark physical keyboard, while the size of the Vienna is rumoured to accommodate a five-inch display.

And yet, while there are plenty of rumours around what users can expect from BlackBerry's latest model, there is little indication about when the new device will be released.

Moving closer into security market

However, that's not to say that BlackBerry was completely quiet at MWC. Indeed, the company seems to have shown a willingness to go back to exploring cybersecurity consulting services.

The company used MWC to announce secure enterprise solutions and services via Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform, in a move that will allow enterprise customers to better manage their BES12 deployment.

On top of that, BlackBerry and Microsoft are planning to add a network crisis communication solution from AtHoc into Microsoft’s Azure Marketplace.

It all comes amid BlackBerry's reported takeover of UK-based cyber security consultancy Encription, which will move it further into the services business as it continues to morph into a more software-focused tech firm.

The cyber security consulting market is currently worth an estimated $16.5 billion a year, with BlackBerry clearly still keen to gain a slice of the sector's profitability, despite hardware remaining an important part of the business.

The acquisition of Encription is the latest in a string of moves into the software and services sector over the last year.

In September, the company agreed a $425 million deal for security software maker Good Technology.