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Devices/smartphones

BlackBerry to Cut 4,500 Jobs

Embattled Canadian smartphone maker BlackBerry revealed Friday that it will cut 4,500 jobs -- or 40 percent of its workforce -- and drop two smartphone models as it tries to lower costs.

BlackBerry -- formerly Research In Motion -- revealed on Friday afternoon that it will be posting a net operating loss of approximately $950 million to $995 million for its fiscal second quarter. The loss is down to unsold phone inventory and a restructuring charge of $72 million.

BlackBerry has not yet said when or where it will specifically cut jobs.The company's stated aim, however, is a cost reduction of 50 percent by the first quarter of 2015.

The company also announced that it will slim down its future smartphone offerings from six devices to four. The portfolio will focus on enterprise and so-called "prosumer" devices, including two high-end devices and two entry-level models in all-touch and full-keyboard versions.

On top of all that, BlackBerry's special committee of the board continues to evaluate strategic alternatives, which include a possible sale of the company.

After pinning its hopes for a revival on the series 10 models, BlackBerry continues to be crushed by iPhone and Android phones in the marketplace. BlackBerry already slashed jobs in 2012 as it struggled to deliver a new operating system and devices.

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— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading

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DOShea 9/20/2013 | 9:52:11 PM
Buyer? Maybe Microsoft will acquire BlackBerry--oh, wait...
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