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BlackBerry (BB) Inks Deal With Volvo Group, Shares Rise

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Driven by its technology leadership, BlackBerry Limited (BB - Free Report) recently announced that it has teamed up with a leading Swedish automobile manufacturing company — Volvo Group. Per the alliance, BlackBerry will integrate its proprietary technology, BlackBerry QNX software, across Volvo Group’s diverse base of heavy vehicles. Following the announcement, BlackBerry’s shares soared as high as $9.51 in yesterday’s trading session.

Markedly, the integration reflects the automobile giant’s strategy to take advantage of the right software and components for safe and secure architecture of the next-gen vehicles. Volvo Group’s decision to select BlackBerry’s QNX software for its main domain controller ECUs (engine control unit) was solidified post a thorough proof of concept, demonstrating its feasibility to support the future generation of autonomous driving and electrification.

Pre-integration with various suppliers of the Adaptive AUTOSAR, an enhanced software standard for the automotive industry, was a contributing factor as well. Notably, the partnership aims to harness the capabilities of QNX Operating System (OS) to be on par with the industry safety standards.

With more than 40 years of experience in the manufacture of safety certified embedded software, BlackBerry QNX caters to the connected and autonomous vehicle industry with a wide portfolio of safety-certified solutions. These include infotainment, connectivity, in-car network security, type-1 hypervisor supporting multiple engine control unit integration into domain controllers, advanced driver-assistance systems and acoustics.

QNX OS is an ISO 26262 ASIL-D safety-certified software solution that streamlines certifications to address both performance and reliability requirements. It operates on the back of a real-time operating system and hypervisor, and is ideal for use in aerospace, medical, industrial controls and robotics sectors, among others.

Installed in more than 175 million vehicles, the software is vouched by several Tier 1 and original equipment manufacturers across the globe. Markedly, the inclusion of QNX software will aid Volvo Group to not only drive innovation but also highlight the importance of a standard OS in the commercial vehicles for a sustainable transport system.

Per the recent engagement, Volvo Group will create its ‘Volvo Dynamic Software Platform’ on the back of QNX Hypervisor for Safety and QNX OS for Safety, both of which are touted as the ideal platform to overcome any challenges related to automation and connectivity. That said, the latest deal seems to be the call of the hour as majority of the auto companies are shifting toward state-of-the-art technology to enhance vehicles’ software content while remaining committed to aligning with the highest safety standards.

BlackBerry’s foray into the automotive industry was marked by the seamless integration of navigation, infotainment and critical driving functions. The company leverages its extensive technology portfolio to extend the best-in-class security and reliability features. These include a unified endpoint management solution that provides comprehensive multiplatform device, application and content management with integrated security and connectivity, embedded systems and related services.

As a prime player in the enterprise mobility management, BlackBerry is widely recognized for productivity and security innovations. The company offers one of the most secure mobile enterprise solutions in the market through a broad portfolio of products and services. With a holistic growth model, focusing on organic and inorganic initiatives, BlackBerry aims to expand its market share in the enterprise mobility segment. The company’s solid product cycle, coupled with impending launches of new secure communication products and services, instills optimism.

The stock has soared 136.9% in the past year compared with growth of 90.2% of the industry. It remains to be seen if such technological endeavors can boost the stock in the long run.

Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider

BlackBerry currently has a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell).

Some better-ranked stocks in the industry are ASGN Incorporated (ASGN - Free Report) , CDW Corporation (CDW - Free Report) and Cerence Inc. (CRNC - Free Report) , each carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

ASGN pulled off a trailing four-quarter positive earnings surprise of 22.3%, on average.

CDW delivered a trailing four-quarter positive earnings surprise of 14.1%, on average.

Cerence delivered a trailing four-quarter positive earnings surprise of 287%, on average.

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