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Forget Apple Inc.: 1 Reason to Buy BlackBerry Ltd. Instead

While investors gawk over Apple Inc.’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) latest piece of “iJunk,” they could be missing out on an even larger opportunity.

Apple has come to dominate the smartphone revolution. In 2015 alone, the company is on track to sell 270 million iPhone units, accounting for four out of every 10 handsets sold globally. No wonder shares of the Cupertino giant have soared over 2,000% since 2005.

BlackBerry Ltd. (TSX:BB)(NASDAQ:BBRY), however, which practically invented this industry years ago, has been kicked to the curb. Consumers have dropped their once beloved “Crackberry” handsets in favour of Apple iOS and Google Android devices. As a result, BlackBerry shares have plunged 80% over the past five years.

But behind the scenes, new CEO John Chen is working on something that could be even larger than the smartphone. And for investors getting in on the ground floor, the gains could be impressive. Here are three reasons to skip Apple altogether and buy BlackBerry instead.

1. The stock is cheap

Today BlackBerry is priced as if the company is about to go out of business. While investors throw money at any security in front of them, they seem to have short arms and deep pockets when it comes to BlackBerry’s shares.

The company has a market value of US$5.5 billion today. At that price, you’re only paying for BlackBerry’s cash, patents and service business. You can get all the upside from QNX, BlackBerry Messenger, and anything else the company might be cooking up for free.

2. The upside is huge

Today 99% of all “things” are unconnected to the Web. But soon just about everything you own—including your house, TV, and coffeemaker—will be online. Cisco CEO John Chambers calls the phenomena the “Internet of Things,” or IoT, and predicts that by 2020

  • global Internet traffic will grow threefold;
  • the number of devices connected to the Internet will hit 50 billion, compared with just 12 billion today; and
  • the market for IoT products and services could hit US$2 trillion, larger than Canada’s annual gross domestic product.

With the company’s QNX operating system, BlackBerry is helping businesses turn the oncoming wall of data into actionable information. The company has already made opening forays into the automotive and healthcare sectors. Given BlackBerry’s first mover advantage, these industries could just be the beginning.

3. The smart money is buying

Of course, I’m not the only one who spotted this opportunity.

Last quarter a number of respected hedge fund managers—including Jim Simons, Cliff Asness, and Prem Watsa—initiated or increased the size of their positions in the company. And as I wrote earlier this week, billionaire financier Ken Griffin has built a US$14.7 million stake in combined shares and call options.

What could have these investors so excited? I’d say it could only mean one thing: they see an epic rally ahead.

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This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium service or advisor. We’re Motley! Questioning an investing thesis — even one of our own — helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer, so we sometimes publish articles that may not be in line with recommendations, rankings or other content.

Fool contributor Robert Baillieul has no position in any stocks mentioned. David Gardner owns shares of Apple, Google (A shares), and Google (C shares). Tom Gardner owns shares of Google (A shares) and Google (C shares). The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple, Google (A shares), and Google (C shares).

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