New Delhi: It was only last month when BlackBerry CEO John Chen revealed that the company had teamed up with Foxconn to build budget phones, and now a new report claims that the Foxconn-built budget BlackBerry 10 phones will make its way to MWC 2014.
According to a Focus Taiwan report, citing Terry Gou, chairman of Taiwan's Hon Hai Precision Industry, known mostly by its trading name Foxconn, BlackBerry's new devices, assembled by Hon Hai's mobile unit, will debut at MWC 2014 in Barcelona.
BlackBerry last month had announced that Foxconn would help design the hardware for its future low-end devices as part of a 5-year deal, furthering the template for manufacturing specialists to scale the value chain. BlackBerry itself will remain focused on software technology.
Foxconn's BlackBerry deal marks the Taiwanese firm's biggest step up the value chain - a chance to not just assemble smartphones, but help design them, too.
The agreement to design and market phones starting in Indonesia, the world's fourth-most populous country but an under-penetrated market, is a boon to a mega-manufacturer trying to grow its margins while making a play for a bigger slice of the global mobile devices market.
Best known for putting together iPhones, Foxconn honed its skills by meeting Apple Inc's exacting standards and supply chain rigour. It boasts a workforce of more than 1 million and the scale to negotiate cheaper component prices than BlackBerry could obtain on its own.
(With inputs from Reuters)