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BlackBerry Ends Terrible Week With Mass Layoff

Mark Lennihan/AP file photo

BlackBerry debuted its Z30 phone on Wednesday as its new flagship smartphone. There's nothing wrong with you if you missed this. Because with all of the excitement over the new iPhone that was released Friday (you can get it in gold!), it was hard to think about the technological dinosaur that is BlackBerry. 

And that Z30 may have a very short life span. 

On Friday, BlackBerry briefly halted its shares before announcing its disastrous second-quarter revenue results. The company's $1.6 billion quarterly haul came in well short of investors' expectations of around $3 billion, according to CNBC. Over the quarter, the company shipped just 3.7 million phones while racking up a net operating loss of $995 million in the second quarter.

On top of that, confirming reports from The Wall Street Journal, BlackBerry announced a massive layoff of 4,500 employees out of a total of around 12,700. That's around 35 percent of BlackBerry's total staff. BlackBerry isn't even done with the worst of Friday yet, as shares are down over 20 percent as of about 4 p.m.

At the end of August, BlackBerry director Bert Nordberg told WSJ that he thought the company could survive as a "niche company," and that there wasn't much sense in "battling" Apple or Google. With a newly announced plan to reduce operating expenditures by 50 percent by 2015, going small doesn't even seem like much of a choice.

BlackBerry, once the unquestioned king of the Washington, D.C., smartphone market, has even had trouble surviving in Congress over the last year. But that doesn't mean it'll be too easy for members of Congress and Capitol Hill staffers to just trade in their BlackBerry phones for gold iPhones. Because there's already a long wait list.

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