BlackBerry will end support for legacy devices on January 4, 2022

Photo: Mahesh Kumar A (AP)

Before joining the iPhone cult that I’ve enjoyed for years, my first major phone purchase was a BlackBerry. Time made it as slow as a turtle, and it started its new life in a drawer in one of the many apartments and houses I’ve lived in. Over the years, I forgot about BlackBerry devices, as I’m sure most of you did—no offense to the perennial BlackBerry fans—until now.

The only reason I’m talking about BlackBerry phones now is because they will officially die on January 4, 2022. If this sounds familiar to you, it’s because we’ve been saying that BlackBerry phones have broken since at least 2016, when the company announced it was exiting the hardware business. Pieces of his empire, such as the BlackBerry World app store and the legendary BBM Messaging Service, have slowly declined since then.

Nevertheless, for anyone who still owns a legacy device, it really is time to say goodbye.

In a recent support message on its website, BlackBerry reminded users with devices running BlackBerry 7.1 OS and earlier, BlackBerry 10 software and BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.1 and earlier versions — all of which are considered legacy devices — that after January 4, 2022, these products will lose the ability to perform key functions. to be carried out.

BlackBerry, which now provides security software, originally announced the end-of-life date for these devices in September 2020.

“As of this date, devices running these legacy services and software over carrier or Wi-Fi connections will no longer work reliably, including for data, phone calls, SMS and 9-1-1 functionality,” BlackBerry said.

In addition, BlackBerry apps, including BlackBerry Link, BlackBerry Desktop Manager and BlackBerry Blend, will have “limited functionality”. Users with a BlackBerry hosted email address or who receive forwarded email to a BlackBerry email address must migrate to another service.

Importantly, BlackBerry Android devices will not be affected by the service end date unless users redirect their email to a BlackBerry email or use an enhanced Sim-based license or identity-based license. In the case of the licenses, BlackBerry says that users must purchase a standard license to cover the use of BlackBerry business services on their device.

As for what to do if you have an outdated BlackBerry device that you don’t want to get rid of, the company won’t hold back.

“Customers will have to switch to new devices. Contact the carrier of your choice for more information about which devices and subscriptions are available,” said BlackBerry.

On BlackBerry phones. Although they will no longer be around, the company can rest assured that they have left their mark on society. As for my BlackBerry, which is still in an unfamiliar drawer somewhere, it has served me well while it lasted.

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