Lots of news around smartphone-maker BlackBerry yesterday, not all of it positive. The Wall Street Journal reported that the company may lay off as much as 40% of its workforce by the end of this year, as it cuts costs and prepares to be sold and/or broken up. That rather took the shine off the announcement of a brand new BlackBerry phone – or rather a ‘phablet’ given its five-inch screen. The Z30 is being described as the “fastest and most advanced” BlackBerry smartphone, running its latest BB10 software. Meanwhile, BlackBerry also confirmed that its BBM messaging app will launch on Android and iPhone this weekend – the first time it’s been available on non-BlackBerry devices. While BBM still has a sizeable userbase – 60m people sending more than 10bn messages a day – it’s been left in the shade recently by the rise of apps like WhatsApp.

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