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BlackBerry to cut 40% of its workforce, 4,500 jobs

It's tough times for the Canadian company, as it's announced massive jobs cuts ahead of disappointing results.

BlackBerry is facing more tough times, as it's announced it'll cut 4,500 jobs -- that's a whopping 40 per cent of its global workforce.

The Canadian company will announce its second-quarter earnings next week, and is expected to report a loss of around £621 million. Ouch. Still, at least the BBM app is coming to Android and iOS this weekend. That's something to look forward to, right?

BlackBerry's chief executive Thorstein Heins said in a statement: "We are implementing the difficult, but necessary operational changes announced today to address our position in a maturing and more competitive industry, and to drive the company towards profitability.

"Going forward, we plan to refocus our offering on our end-to-end solution of hardware, software and services for enterprises and the productive, professional end user."

One of the main reasons for the dive in earnings is the disappointing sales of its Z10 smart phone. The Z10 was launched in January alongside the company's BB10 operating system, but has so far failed the set the world alight. Thorstein Heins said in June that BlackBerry had only shipped 2.7 million Z10s out of 6.8 million. The handset, and BB10, were beset by delay after delay.

Over the summer, rumours abounded that BlackBerry would be sold. Its wealth of patents could be attractive to potential buyers, just as Motorola's was for Google, but so far none of the major companies have expressed an interest. Not publicly, anyway.

BlackBerry announced the Z30 this week, its biggest handset ever. Unfortunately, it coincided with two other new smart phones that were released. Talk about bad timing. Unless BlackBerry knew the Z30 would disappoint, and so wanted to bury the bad news under the mountain of Apple coverage. Or am I being too cynical?

Is the party over for BlackBerry? Who should step in and buy it? Let me know in the comments, or on our Facebook page.