One of the biggest reasons why I love investing in tech stocks is because of the opportunity they hold for really changing and advancing society. Unlike other companies that either offer an existing service or make a product that accomplishes an existing task, the more innovative tech companies in the market introduce new technologies and processes that could be radically different and, to investors, lucrative.
For many investors, the thought of investing in BlackBerry may seem a little unorthodox. The company has been involved in a very public, long, and difficult turnaround that has resulted in BlackBerry shift from being the predominant smartphone marker on the market with millions of device sales to a much smaller, leaner, and focused software-first technology company.
Often, the snail pace of a massive turnaround gives the impression that there has been little to any movement at all. This results in critics often dismissing the potential that BlackBerry holds based on prior failures, and, ultimately, they move on other investments.
Here’s a quick recap of everything that BlackBerry did last year, and how this year is slated to be an incredible one for the Waterloo-based tech shop.
IoT solutions are the way of the future
Over the past few years, BlackBerry has invested heavily in a number of IoT-related solutions, such as the innovative BlackBerry Radar asset-tracking solution. The key point for investors to keep in mind when it comes to these new IoT offerings is that the solution itself needs to integrate and communicate well across both the software and hardware layers, even spanning multiple companies.
A prime example of this is BlackBerry’s work in the autonomous vehicle market. Despite QNX already existing in over 125 million vehicles around the world, for a fully autonomous driving experience, the vehicles will need to communicate with each other as well as with ground-based infrastructures such as traffic signals and weather stations.
Coincidentally, BlackBerry announced a vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure service late last year that establishes a secure means of communications. The software was provided for free to both automotive manufacturers and public offices working on creating the smart cities of tomorrow.
AI & security are driving growth
BlackBerry announced its biggest acquisition to date late last year for California-based Cylance. Cylance is a cybersecurity firm that uses AI and machine learning to protect any number of internet-connected devices from cyber attacks. The acquisition dovetails nicely with BlackBerry’s existing portfolio of projects, with everything from cybersecurity and enterprise management to IoT and autonomous driving solutions potentially benefiting from the acquisition.
Here’s the interesting part: BlackBerry is synonymous with security, with decades of experience, yet the company hasn’t engaged in offering any semblance of cybersecurity consulting business until just the past few years.
To say that segment is not going to continue to grow would be incorrect.
BlackBerry is an intriguing investment option that should be on the radar of nearly every investor contemplating their tech portfolio. BlackBerry’s recent return to profitability and solid growth numbers also showcase that the nearly decade-long turnaround is finally complete, and that there are new revenue streams to offset declining access fees and the company’s former handset division.
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Fool contributor Demetris Afxentiou has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of BlackBerry. BlackBerry is a recommendation of Stock Advisor Canada.