BlackBerry Takes QNX Technology to the Cloud with AWS

In a significant move to bolster its presence in the cloud computing sphere, BlackBerry has announced an innovative step that will bring its acclaimed QNX technology to the cloud, making it accessible to developers of mission-critical embedded systems. This announcement was made during the AWS re:Invent 2022 conference, currently taking place in Las Vegas.

At the core of this announcement is BlackBerry’s demonstration of its BlackBerry IVY artificial intelligence (AI) data platform executing natively on Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) instances. These instances are notably powered by AWS Graviton2 processors, indicating a significant push towards leveraging cloud capabilities to aid the development process. This development is especially pertinent to automotive AI-driven solutions, enabling developers to refine, test, and seamlessly integrate these solutions, which are intended for deployment on automotive-grade hardware within vehicles.

The QNX platform from BlackBerry, designed specifically for embedded systems, encompasses the QNX Neutrino real-time operating system (RTOS) compatible with ARM and x86 platforms, the QNX Momentics tool suite, and the QNX Software Center. Complementing this is BlackBerry IVY, an AI platform tailored for automotive applications and co-developed by BlackBerry and AWS.

Running the QNX RTOS in a cloud environment transforms it into a cloud-native developer workbench, offering versatility for use either as a standalone platform or in conjunction with BlackBerry IVY. This setup includes dual networking stacks — a Standard Networking stack for basic needs and a High-Performance Networking stack for more complex networking requirements. BlackBerry emphasizes that the development environment provided is POSIX-compliant, ensuring familiarity for developers accustomed to working with Linux.

This strategic move to extend QNX’s cloud capabilities is targeted at embedded systems developers across various industries, such as automotive, robotics, medical devices, industrial controls, aerospace, and defense. By doing so, BlackBerry aims to usher in a new era of accelerated collaboration and development velocity, covering the full spectrum of product development and deployment lifecycle.

Grant Courville, the vice president of product management and strategy at BlackBerry QNX, emphasized the transformative potential of this cloud-based offering. “Arming our customers with our foundational QNX software products in the cloud is a game-changer for embedded developers. It provides them with easy access and scalability at their fingertips,” he explained.

Transitioning from its former glory as a leading mobile phone provider, BlackBerry, based in Waterloo, Ontario, currently focuses on leveraging AI and machine learning to deliver cutting-edge solutions in cybersecurity, safety, and data privacy. The company boasts that it secures more than 500 million endpoints, including over 215 million vehicles, demonstrating its significant footprint in the technology landscape.

With this latest move, BlackBerry not only reinforces its commitment to innovation in the embedded systems domain but also highlights the growing role of cloud computing in streamlining and enhancing the development processes of mission-critical embedded systems.

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