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WASHINGTON, June 22, 2018 (News Wires) - Canada's BlackBerry Ltd flagged slowing sales in its software and services business as it switches to a subscription-based model, sending its shares down more than 9 per cent.

The company forecast 8 per cent to 10 per cent growth for the business for 2019, compared with 20 per cent in 2018, overshadowing its first-quarter revenue and profit beat.

BlackBerry will no longer be selling its software and services on perpetual licensing basis and will have to convince companies to agree to subscription, Chief Executive Officer John Chen said on a post-earnings call.

The growth guidance is lower than what the market has been expecting, and that's mainly due to the company having to recognize enterprise software revenue based on subscription, Morningstar analyst Ali Mogharabi said.

BlackBerry, which dominated the smartphone market nearly a decade ago before losing out to Apple Inc's iPhones and Android devices, has been trying to win investor confidence and make money by selling software to manage mobile devices to corporations and government agencies.

As part of the transition, the company is also focusing on making software for next-generation driverless cars based on its QNX platform.

CFRA Research Angelo Zino said the turnaround is working for BlackBerry and investors need to keep a long-term view on the company.

"You don't see big top-line and bottom-line growth because the company is still adjusting every quarter from the winding of their hardware business," Zino said.

China's Baidu Inc already uses QNX in the operating system of its autonomous driving project, Apollo. Other partnerships include Tata Motors Ltd's Jaguar, Ford Motor Co and auto technology companies Denso and Aptiv Plc .

The company's net loss was $60 million, or 11 cents per share, for the first quarter ended May 31, compared with a profit of $671 million, or $1.23 per share, a year earlier.

BlackBerry received a one-time arbitration payment of $940 million from Qualcomm Inc in the year-ago quarter.

NEW YORK, June 11, 2018 (News Wires) - There’s a new BlackBerry smartphone, the latest effort to revive the once-dominant brand. The BlackBerry Key2 was unveiled recently in New York by TCL Communication, the Chinese manufacturer which took over the rights to the smartphone brand from the Canadian tech firm in 2016.

The new device, which includes a physical keyboard under a 4.5 inch screen and runs the Android operating system updates the first BlackBerry Key released last year.

It will be sold this month starting at $649 or €649, according to the company.

“Although there are many different smartphones for consumers to choose from today, most tend to offer very similar experiences without much distinction from one to the next,” said Alain Lejeune, head of TCL’s BlackBerry Mobile division.

“With the introduction of BlackBerry Key2, we’ve created a distinct smartphonethat captures all the traits that have made BlackBerry smartphones iconic, while introducing new innovations and experiences that not only make this one of the best devices for security and privacy, but also the most advanced BlackBerry smartphone ever.”

BlackBerry’s share of the global smartphone market has fallen to virtually zero from a peak of more than half a decade ago.

The dominance of Apple’s iOS and Android-powered handsets prompted the Canada-based firm to abandon the market to concentrate on software and services.

Under the agreement between the two firms, Canada’s BlackBerry will remain in control of software and security on smartphones, while TCL will produce handsets powered by Google Android software, abandoning the former BlackBerry OS software.

TCL also produces smartphones under the Alcatel brand.