BlackBerry has officially confirmed the launch of the BlackBerry Priv, the rumoured Android slider that's been doing the rounds under the codename BlackBerry Venice.
Although there's been no official press release, specs or supporting images, John Chen, BlackBerry CEO, confirmed the news via the company's quarterly report, saying:
"Today, I am confirming our plans to launch Priv, an Android device named after BlackBerry's heritage and core mission of protecting our customers' privacy. Priv combines the best of BlackBerry security and productivity with the expansive mobile application ecosystem available on the Android platform."
Chen preceeds this statement, however, saying: "we are focused on making faster progress to achieve profitability in our handset business", which explains the motivation to move over to the Android platform.
The quarterly results statement goes on to say that BlackBerry Priv will be a flagship handset, but importantly offer "best in class security for enterprise customers".
Expanding on these initial comments, Chen has also written a blog post, explaining the thinking behind this move to Android. Much of it is designed to reassure customers that this will be Android with a focus on privacy and productivity, but also to reassure BlackBerry fans that the company remains committed to BlackBerry's own platform BB10.
The BlackBerry Priv will be launching later in the calendar year according to BlackBerry, and we've previously heard rumours that it will be launching some time in November.
BlackBerry concludes by saying that more details will be released in the coming weeks. If you can't wait that long, we've been keeping track of all the rumours surrounding this break-through device.