It’s been a long time since we saw a BlackBerry-branded tablet. The firm’s only slate to date – the BlackBerry Playbook – was released back in April 2011, but we could be about to see the iconic brand return to the form factor.
BlackBerry CEO John Chen has said the firm is looking into new licensing deals after a successful partnership with TCL saw the BlackBerry name land on a selection of handsets including the DTEK50, DTEK60 and KeyOne.
A BlackBerry statement reveals that "the company is now pursuing additional endpoints which could include tablets, wearables, medical devices, appliances, point-of-sale terminals and other smartphones."
BlackBerry is exploring wider licensing deals which would see its name and software attached to a broader set of devices, and Chen said he was making no promises on a recent earnings call.
"We are now expanding to the next phase of our licensing program. This will focus on a broader set of endpoints. What this might mean, and I make no promise, is that you may soon see a BlackBerry tablet, and it will also extend to co-branded handset with IoT and Enterprise of Things to EoT devices.
"These endpoints will run our software and security features and be cobranded Secure by BlackBerry."
While BlackBerry’s dominance in the market is long gone, there’s still a devoted group of fans that love what the company is doing in the security space, as well as putting QWERTY keyboards on smartphones.
What this means is there will be a demand for more Blackberry branded products, and while the sales numbers may not be huge it’s still a big enough name with a strong heritage to pull it off. At least, that's what the company hopes.
If Nokia can do it, BlackBerry can too, right?