BlackBerry today reported stronger-than-expected quarterly results and increased its fiscal-year revenue forecast after sales at its closely watched software business hit a record. 

The Canadian company last year stopped manufacturing the iconic BlackBerry smartphone to focus on software.

It reported a profit of 5 cents a share before special items for the second quarter ended on August 31, compared with break-even per share a year earlier. 

Revenue fell to $249m from $352m a year earlier but rose slightly from $244m in the previous quarter. 

Analysts had on average expected BlackBerry to break even on revenue of $220m, excluding items, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. 

Net income for the quarter was $19m, or 4 cents per share. 

Excluding restructuring costs and other items, BlackBerry said it expected fiscal-year revenue of $920m to $950m and positive earnings per share. It also forecast positive free cash flow. 

The Ontario-based company is aiming to notch 10-15% software revenue growth for its fiscal year, which runs until the end of February. 

BlackBerry said software and services revenue reached a record $196m in the quarter, more than analysts' estimates.