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RIM could license software, sell hardware division after BB10 launch

post #1 of 44
Thread Starter 
Thorsten Heins, chief executive of Research In Motion, said on Monday that the embattled BlackBerry maker must ensure that its forthcoming BlackBerry 10 models are successful before the company can consider strategic alliances, such as licensing its software or even selling off its hardware production.

Heins spoke with German publication Die Welt in an interview covering RIM's prospects for the future, whether RIM's traditionally business-first focus is still applicable, and a number of other topics related to the health of the phone maker.

RIM


Asked whether RIM would consider licensing its new platform, Heins said that the company would need to show that "the platform has a large potential. First we have to fulfill our promises." Heins claims that BlackBerry 10 is future-proof for the next 10 years and scalable from smartphones to other devices such as networked cars.

Reuters pointed out on Monday that in the same interview, Heins acknowledged the possibility of RIM selling off its hardware production, though he specified that the company has a good deal of flexibility and time before it has to make any hard decisions on such matters, thanks to its cash reserves.

Heins said that BlackBerry 10 will launch with around 70,000 apps available for the platform, a far cry from the hundreds of thousands of apps available in Google and Apple's app markets. The raw number of apps available, though, says Heins, is less important than having a "certain selection" of apps "corresponding to regional preferences."

Heins also said that developers will be easily able to convert Android apps to compatibility with the new BlackBerry platform. RIM recently held an event encouraging developers to port their Android apps, and that event is believed to have met with some success.

Heins expressed confidence that the smartphone market, currently dominated by Apple and devices running Google's Android platform, is dynamic enough for RIM to carve out a "substantial" role for itself. He said the industry is still young, even though it is growing quickly.

He also played down concerns at RIM's having lost a million subscribers in the last quarter, noting that the subscriber loss was "not so bad" considering that RIM subscribers have only been able to choose among year-old hardware for some time. RIM still counts some 78 million or so BlackBerry subscribers worldwide.

The forthcoming BlackBerry 10 OS is viewed by some observers as the Canadian manufacturer's last, best hope to reverse its recent fortunes. While iOS and Android have gained, RIM -- once a leader in the smartphone sector -- has found itself cutting costs and going into survival mode ahead of the launch of its new handsets and platform.

The end of January will see RIM introducing its newest BlackBerry devices in a series of worldwide press events. Rolling out at those events will be a full-touchscreen BlackBerry device, a touchscreen device with a hardware QWERTY keyboard, and possibly another rumored device -- said to be codenamed 'Aristo' -- that packs very high-end specs and a bigger screen.
post #2 of 44

How about finishing and launching the product first, and then you can worry about what to do with it.

post #3 of 44
I think the new HW and OS looks great. However, I think it's likely too late to play catch up at this point.

The system looks smooth, too. Smoother than Android.

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post #4 of 44

The end is near. 

post #5 of 44

Good luck to RIM for success.
 

post #6 of 44
The REAL question is To Whom? I don't think anyone is interested.
post #7 of 44
Why would you pay money to RIM instead of getting Android for free?
post #8 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

I think the new HW and OS looks great. However, I think it's likely too late to play catch up at this point.

The system looks smooth, too. Smoother than Android.


I fear that you might be right. Btw that's either a small device or that guy has huge hands.
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post #9 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Heins said that BlackBerry 10 will launch with around 70,000 apps available for the platform, a far cry from the hundreds of thousands of apps available in Google and Apple's app markets.

 

Mmm... hyperbole. 

post #10 of 44

The problem with RIMM (and has been for years) is that they have no idea what they want to be.

 

They are an ENTERPRISE company, and what they do best is secure e-mail.  I remember when the Playbook was announced, they SAID that this was going to be their focus.  All the marketing materials... all the videos... EVERYTHING, focused on Facebook sharing... photos... games.

 

Same with the new stuff.  Are they going to try to get consumers to switch to BB10 by convincing them it's a better device to share photos than an iOS or Android device?  Are they going to keep their corporate customers with this strategy?  What is the point?

 

Similarly... I remember seeing about two years ago a big section of their website dedicated to a "theme builder."  Honestly?  Rome is burning around you and *THIS* is what you are focused on?  If you have *ONE* person working on this, it's one too many.  Actually:  https://developer.blackberry.com/themestudio/

 

They have no clue what they want to be... they are going to die because of it.

 

Even until very recently, they had a product that was entrenched in the corporate world around the globe.  BES was used by *EVERYBODY* and they would have loved to continue to use it.  RIMM had an opportunity to focus on this and become the leading provider of secure communications software and services (on the back end).  Instead... they had people working on developing a "theme builder" for phones that nobody wanted.

 

Idiots...

post #11 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

How about finishing and launching the product first, and then you can worry about what to do with it.

Always best to be ready for all scenarios.
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post #12 of 44

I think this could be used in more than just mobile phones. For example, Chrysler uses a QNX based OS to run its uconnect touchscreen radios which work very well and are very responsive. I happen to have their 8.4" screen in my new Dodge Dart and it works flawlessly. The next gen also supports apps which I could see being very successful in the automotive space. This is just one example. You could see this in other devices, appliances, etc. 

 

I think its way too late for them to come back in the phone space. They're so far behind, people and companies are still dropping them for other alternatives. Its almost like an uncontrollable downward spiral. They don't seem to have the customer loyalty to keep them going like Apple did during their tough times. I think licensing their software is their best bet. 

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post #13 of 44
Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post
Always best to be ready for all scenarios.

 

Launching it seems to be the least likely of those. lol.gif

post #14 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

I think the new HW and OS looks great. However, I think it's likely too late to play catch up at this point.

The system looks smooth, too. Smoother than Android.

Indeed, it looks very good. Including their Z10 & X10 Launch Promotion



  1. 70.000 is a lot of apps to get from the start; that ought to cover anyones wish, no? I certainly have a difficult time to choose from all available Flashlight apps that the App Store has to offer.
  2. Did you guys get any of this German? Or perhaps mainly the numbers, i.e. 4.2", Dual-Core 1.5GHz, 8MP, 1280x768, 1800mAh, 16GB, (microSD, NFC)
  3. I like the 'flip up for the recent 4 apps tiles', and when flipping to the left the springboard comes back. Do all Smartphones come with a springboard, and hav they all copied Apple, including the dots at the bottom indicating there are more 'pages in your springboard'?

BlackBerry Z10 retail images spotted online, another leak suggests CAD 799 retail price



Wait, is that a, what do you call it...?



16 pics
Edited by PhilBoogie - 1/21/13 at 9:45am
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post #15 of 44
Probably their best shot at survival, but futile all the same.
post #16 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

I think the new HW and OS looks great. However, I think it's likely too late to play catch up at this point.

The system looks smooth, too. Smoother than Android.


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post #17 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

Indeed, it looks very good. Including their Z10 & X10 Launch Promotion

video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XFGR24jid3k
  1. 70.000 is a lot of apps to get from the start; that ought to cover anyones wish, no? I certainly have a difficult time to choose from all available Flashlight apps that the App Store has to offer.
  2. Did you guys get any of this German? Or perhaps mainly the numbers, i.e. 4.2", Dual-Core 1.5GHz, 8MP, 1280x768, 1800mAh, 16GB, (microSD, NFC)
  3. I like the 'flip up for the recent 4 apps tiles', and when flipping to the left the springboard comes back. Do all Smartphones come with a springboard, and hav they all copied Apple, including the dots at the bottom indicating there are more 'pages in your springboard'?

BlackBerry Z10 retail images spotted online, another leak suggests CAD 799 retail price

image: http://forums.appleinsider.com/content/type/61/id/19416/width/500/height/1000

Wait, is that a, what do you call it...?

image: http://forums.appleinsider.com/content/type/61/id/19417/width/500/height/1000

16 pics

1) I think 70k is very reasonable to assume a healthy ecosystem. If they vet their apps, a good SDK, and good support from companies they could have a more attractive store than Android which might be able to attract users and developers.

2) Thanks for the translation of the specs.

3) Not sure about the Springboard but I think the dots for pages first appeared in the iOS jailbreak app store back before there were additional pages to wit no App Store.

4) $799 CAD?! That's $804 USD. We're talking more than $150 USD more than the same capacity device from Apple. Am I missing something here?

5) That video of how they are going to market this device reminded me of this classic and funny video from Charlie Brooker on how to report the news...

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post #18 of 44
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post
Heins expressed confidence that the smartphone market, currently dominated by Apple and devices running Google's Android platform, is dynamic enough for RIM to carve out a "substantial" role for itself. He said the industry is still young, even though it is growing quickly.

It's still a very young industry.  The post-PC era has just barely begun.

But that's no excuse for RIM letting Apple and its imitators pass them after having the early lead.

RIM has fallen well behind the pack now, and that gap is "growing quickly."

 

Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post
The forthcoming BlackBerry 10 OS is viewed by some observers as the Canadian manufacturer's last, best hope to reverse its recent fortunes. While iOS and Android have gained, RIM -- once a leader in the smartphone sector -- has found itself cutting costs and going into survival mode ahead of the launch of its new handsets and platform.

Good luck with that, Thorsten.  RIM talks up BlackBerry 10 as if it were The Messiah.

But frankly, it doesn't matter how great BlackBerry 10 actually is.  Still too little.  Still way too late.

RIM's former bread-and-butter, corprorate IT, will take a "wait and see" approach now.  

Because who knows if RIM will even be around next year.  Time to implement plan A: Apple iPhone.

 

RIM is falling into an obvious trap.  They're thinking "cool new hardware plus cool new OS equals survival."

I don't think so.  Hardware is the first baby step.  The OS is a bigger step, but you're still only two stairs

up from the basement floor. Unfortunately for RIM, steps three and four are impossibly large at this point.

 

Step three would be to design, implement, and expand a content and delivery infrastructure.  Kind of

like, oh, I dunno, maybe iTunes.  You know, the infrastructure that made iPod successful.  Then iPhone.

Then iPad.  Apple has been working on that infrastructure since before the first iPod was released.

They laid the groundwork with iTunes' "Rip. Mix. Burn." then released iPod ten months later. 

And they've been relentlessly scaling up that infrastructure ever since.  And without a content delivery

infrastructure like that, you have no chance of survival.

 

Got an iTunes killer, Thorsten?

 

Step four, of course, is "the cloud."  The most successful post-PC players all have robust cloud infrastructures

to support their content infrastructures.  The "cloud" is now as important to those big players as iTunes

was to Apple in the 2000s.  The key word being "big."  Because cloud-based computing requires massive

server farms on huge tracts of land.  All of which requires both time and money to acquire, develop, implement,

test, and scale up.  And RIM has neither time nor money right now.

 

Got an iCloud killer, Thorsten?

 

(Tech newsreading tip: every time you see the word "cloud" in any blog or news story about technology,

just mentally substitute "internet" for "cloud."  E.g. "cloud-based" becomes "internet-based."  

Boom. Clearer, no more obfuscation.)  


Edited by SockRolid - 1/21/13 at 10:04am

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post #19 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by RichL View Post

 

Mmm... hyperbole. 

 

How, 70k is not nearly as robust of a market as the App Store or Google Play Store offer. I wouldn't call that hyperbole at all, in fact I think it is a perfect explanation of how distant the gap is in the markets.

post #20 of 44
RIM couldn't keep up. They were really a one trick pony.
Now the investors want a way to get out because RIM just won't be able to penetrate the iPhone/Android stampede.
Look at Palm. Them clowns reached the end of the line, broke the company up into hardware and software and then finally sold to those printer clowns at HP.
post #21 of 44

The end is near, I hear the fat lady ... great run while it lasted ...

post #22 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobringer View Post

The problem with RIMM (and has been for years) is that they have no idea what they want to be.

They are an ENTERPRISE company, and what they do best is secure e-mail.  I remember when the Playbook was announced, they SAID that this was going to be their focus.  All the marketing materials... all the videos... EVERYTHING, focused on Facebook sharing... photos... games.

Same with the new stuff.  Are they going to try to get consumers to switch to BB10 by convincing them it's a better device to share photos than an iOS or Android device?  Are they going to keep their corporate customers with this strategy?  What is the point?

Similarly... I remember seeing about two years ago a big section of their website dedicated to a "theme builder."  Honestly?  Rome is burning around you and *THIS* is what you are focused on?  If you have *ONE* person working on this, it's one too many.  Actually:  https://developer.blackberry.com/themestudio/

They have no clue what they want to be... they are going to die because of it.

Even until very recently, they had a product that was entrenched in the corporate world around the globe.  BES was used by *EVERYBODY* and they would have loved to continue to use it.  RIMM had an opportunity to focus on this and become the leading provider of secure communications software and services (on the back end).  Instead... they had people working on developing a "theme builder" for phones that nobody wanted.

Idiots...

Losing focus is bad, but I don't know if they would survive even if they retained their enterprise focus. It's an open question whether users would want to carry two devices in the long term, and I think the loser would generally be the BB device.
post #23 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by drblank View Post

The REAL question is To Whom? I don't think anyone is interested.

I strongly disagree. If the new version is any good, I would expect quite a bit of interest. Samsung or HTC would be prime candidates. Perhaps Google.

A lot of companies are starting to realize how much they give up by being tied to Android and would like an alternative. Obviously, Samsung or HTC wouldn't drop Android entirely, but they might well like to have an alternative line of phones so they have a backup plan - and can tap into the people who don't like Android for one reason or another.
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post #24 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


I strongly disagree. If the new version is any good, I would expect quite a bit of interest. Samsung or HTC would be prime candidates. Perhaps Google.

A lot of companies are starting to realize how much they give up by being tied to Android and would like an alternative. Obviously, Samsung or HTC wouldn't drop Android entirely, but they might well like to have an alternative line of phones so they have a backup plan - and can tap into the people who don't like Android for one reason or another.

Why would they do that? Just fork off Android and you already have a more robust OS to start with and on top of that one that you've already spent time adding additional elements to. Plus you still could tap into the app market that Android has rather than taking a risk and hoping that the market for RIM doesn't sink.

post #25 of 44

Pity poor RIMM. Their sales have fallen so far that it view with Microsoft for last place on the charts.

 

Never before have too few battled with too big to produce too little too late and priced too high.

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post #26 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by SockRolid View Post

It's still a very young industry.  The post-PC era has just barely begun.
But that's no excuse for RIM letting Apple and its imitators pass them after having the early lead.
RIM has fallen well behind the pack now, and that gap is "growing quickly."

Step four, of course, is "the cloud."  The most successful post-PC players all have robust cloud infrastructures
to support their content infrastructures.  The "cloud" is now as important to those big players as iTunes
was to Apple in the 2000s.  The key word being "big."  Because cloud-based computing requires massive
server farms on huge tracts of land.  All of which requires both time and money to acquire, develop, implement,
test, and scale up.  And RIM has neither time nor money right now.

Last I checked RIM had massive server farms in Canada. They're well versed in cloud based services. Their email delivery and security is still tops in the industry which are very attractive to many corporations.
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post #27 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post


Losing focus is bad, but I don't know if they would survive even if they retained their enterprise focus. It's an open question whether users would want to carry two devices in the long term, and I think the loser would generally be the BB device.

 

I agree with that...  But if they hadn't lost focus many years ago they might be in a better place today.  I think they should have dumped their hardware division 3-4 years ago and focused on the enterprise back office back then.  Once the Storm came out, it was clear that they were never going compete on the device front.  Your point about BYOD is exactly right.  Not sure why they thought THEY were going to be able to make the devices that employees were going to push employers to allow them to use.

post #28 of 44

With Android, iOS and Windows 8 there is no reason for Blackberry to even exist anymore. They have proven an utter inability to operate and compete is a company, just take them out of their misery.

post #29 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

I strongly disagree. If the new version is any good, I would expect quite a bit of interest. Samsung or HTC would be prime candidates. Perhaps Google.

A lot of companies are starting to realize how much they give up by being tied to Android and would like an alternative. Obviously, Samsung or HTC wouldn't drop Android entirely, but they might well like to have an alternative line of phones so they have a backup plan - and can tap into the people who don't like Android for one reason or another.

I agree. BBs are also very data efficient. Any company with data overage concerns would be attracted to switching to BB.
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post #30 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by AZREOSpecialist View Post

With Android, iOS and Windows 8 there is no reason for Blackberry to even exist anymore. They have proven an utter inability to operate and compete is a company, just take them out of their misery.

I wouldn't write them off just yet. Companies have come back from tailspins and recovered nicely, especially one we all know quite well, Apple.
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post #31 of 44
I should put my bid in to buy that out. It can't be worth more than $50 at this point. I could use the ownership of it as a part of a pickup line regimen at my local bar. But would anyone actually remember who they were in the first place?
post #32 of 44

RIM is is always late to the game. It took them forever to come up with an answer. BB10 will not save them.

post #33 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Thorsten Heins, chief executive of Research In Motion, said on Monday that the embattled BlackBerry maker must ensure that its forthcoming BlackBerry 10 models are successful before the company can consider strategic alliances, such as licensing its software or even selling off its hardware production.
 


Idiotic comment.

 

"Hey buyer/developer, we plan on selling off asap. Do buy this doomed product."

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post #34 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post


Last I checked RIM had massive server farms in Canada. They're well versed in cloud based services. Their email delivery and security is still tops in the industry which are very attractive to many corporations.


Apple should buy them. RiM is good in what Apple (iCloud pings (mobile)Me, so I respond) is not, and the opposite.

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post #35 of 44

It's never too late to play catch up.  Markets and consumers change all the time.  RIM was once top dog and it was considered absurd that anyone could catch them.  Now look at them.  

 

Anyhow, the phone and system looks great, it could be popular, especially among corporations, business people, and people who want lower data costs (RIM has traditionally given carriers the tools to keep different kinds of data access separate, and enabled different kinds of data plans).  Keep in mind RIM still has a pretty large user base, so you can't write them off.  Especially the upcoming BlackBerry that's said to have a physical keyboard AND a fairly decent 720 by 720 screen.  

 

Anyhow, I wouldn't bet against RIM, though I certainly don't think their comeback is a sure thing either.  

post #36 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikeb85 View Post

It's never too late to play catch up.  Markets and consumers change all the time.  RIM was once top dog and it was considered absurd that anyone could catch them.  Now look at them.  

Anyhow, the phone and system looks great, it could be popular, especially among corporations, business people, and people who want lower data costs (RIM has traditionally given carriers the tools to keep different kinds of data access separate, and enabled different kinds of data plans).  Keep in mind RIM still has a pretty large user base, so you can't write them off.  Especially the upcoming BlackBerry that's said to have a physical keyboard AND a fairly decent 720 by 720 screen.  

Anyhow, I wouldn't bet against RIM, though I certainly don't think their comeback is a sure thing either.  

I agree, and I may get one. I love my iPhone, but my company is very conservative and is still "testing" BYOD software like the Goode Server (sp?). I use quotes because i think they'll drag their feet forever. Anyway, they do support RIM devices.

I have been getting burned by work calls and text messages eating up my personsl plan, but I refuse to carry a second device. If RIM can make a phone that is even in the same league as the iPhone, I'll ask my boss for one and also use it for my very light personal needs. There must be others in my situation, where my addition to RIM's customer base would be a subtraction from Apple's. This would cause market share to shift relatively quickly.

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post #37 of 44
I think this gives a better idea of BB10 than the other video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qxxo3Fen_Qw
post #38 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluedalmatian View Post

I think this gives a better idea of BB10 than the other video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qxxo3Fen_Qw

Definitely better. The OS is even more impressive than it was before.

If I have any complaint it's with the HW. It looks great but the fit and finish looks less refined than the iPhone.

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post #39 of 44

In poorer countries like South Africa they sell in huge numbers as a cheap way to get 3G internet. I moved back to South Africa from Australia and was surprised to see Blackberries everywhere. I can't recall seeing one at all in Australia though no doubt they have a presence.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bobringer View Post

The problem with RIMM (and has been for years) is that they have no idea what they want to be.

 

They are an ENTERPRISE company, and what they do best is secure e-mail.  I remember when the Playbook was announced, they SAID that this was going to be their focus.  All the marketing materials... all the videos... EVERYTHING, focused on Facebook sharing... photos... games.

 

Same with the new stuff.  Are they going to try to get consumers to switch to BB10 by convincing them it's a better device to share photos than an iOS or Android device?  Are they going to keep their corporate customers with this strategy?  What is the point?

 

Similarly... I remember seeing about two years ago a big section of their website dedicated to a "theme builder."  Honestly?  Rome is burning around you and *THIS* is what you are focused on?  If you have *ONE* person working on this, it's one too many.  Actually:  https://developer.blackberry.com/themestudio/

 

They have no clue what they want to be... they are going to die because of it.

 

Even until very recently, they had a product that was entrenched in the corporate world around the globe.  BES was used by *EVERYBODY* and they would have loved to continue to use it.  RIMM had an opportunity to focus on this and become the leading provider of secure communications software and services (on the back end).  Instead... they had people working on developing a "theme builder" for phones that nobody wanted.

 

Idiots...

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post #40 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

1) I think 70k is very reasonable to assume a healthy ecosystem. If they vet their apps, a good SDK, and good support from companies they could have a more attractive store than Android which might be able to attract users and developers.

The 70k figure is somewhat misleading. Keep in mind RIM's positioning - heavy duty business apps. Even today, their business app selection is very strong. Sure, they don't have 500 different Angry Birds clones or 700 fart apps or 2,000 flashlight apps, but there are still businesses out there that rely on Blackberry apps.

That's why I suggested that it would be attractive to someone. The ability to immediately access the business market with a differentiated, compelling product would be attractive.
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
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"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
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