It isn’t err’day that a major rapper makes, um, headlines with the news that they are about to be brand ambassador for struggling smartphone maker BlackBerry -- and perhaps today isn’t that day either.
BlackBerry is denying a report at TechCrunch that rapper and Toronto native Drake is in talks to be the company’s official spokesperson for the BlackBerry Classic -- a new phone, to be launched in November, that brings back BlackBerry’s much-loved physical trackpad.
But the company told MobileSyrup the report is not true.
“We can confirm that we are not in conversations with Drake,” a spokesperson told the blog.
The company had tried something like this before. It brought crooner Alicia Keys on board as "global creative director" in 2013 but parted ways with the singer earlier this year. The partnership suffered from some publicity failures, such as Keys tweeting from an iPhone.
BlackBerry announced this week the launch of the BlackBerry Passport, a passsport-sized hybrid device that CEO John Chen described as either “the world’s smallest phablet or the world largest phone.”
The company surprised the world this week by reporting a profit for the first quarter of the year, earning $23 million in net income. Revenue, however, was a fraction of what it was a year earlier: The company brought in $966 million in the quarter, down from $3.07 billion the same time a year earlier.
All the same, analysts said the profit showed BlackBerry may yet be able to transition to being a successful -- if significantly smaller -- player in the smartphone market.
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