BlackBerry CEO predicts tablet market will diminish within five years

Posted:
in iPad edited January 2014
The CEO of the seemingly reinvigorated BlackBerry doesn't have much faith in the long-term potential of the tablet sector, saying in an interview that in five years there might be no reason to have a tablet at all.



BlackBerry chief Thorsten Heins said in an interview on Monday that the tablet market may not exist as it does now in five years, Bloomberg reported. Heins' comments cast doubt on the possibility of BlackBerry launching a follow-up to its ill-fated PlayBook tablet, even though such a move has been expected by many observers.

"In five years I don't think there'll be a reason to have a tablet anymore," Heins said. ""Maybe a big screen in your workspace, but not a tablet as such. Tablets themselves are not a good business model."

Heins' reference to "a big screen in your workspace" could indicate the direction in which the company plans to move with its devices. Prior to the release of BlackBerry's Z10 and Q10, the company was rumored to be working on a mode for the handsets that would allow them to connect to a display and essentially work as a computer with external inputs. Such functionality did not emerge at the launch of BlackBerry 10, but the firm may still be developing it.

Monday's comments aren't Heins' first words on tablets. The BlackBerry exec said in March that his company would not reenter the tablet market unless it had a gamechanger.

"I think the profit pool is very, very thin," Heins said to the Australian Financial Review. "Kudos to Apple, I think they really managed to own that space, so it doesn't make sense for me to just take this head on. I need to figure out, for my enterprise customers, for my consumers, for my BB10 audience, what can I do that provides them a mobile computing experience in the form factor of a tablet, which goes beyond just the puristic tablet experience."

Heins' nod to Apple underscores the Cupertino company's dominance in tablet computing, a segment Apple reinvented with its iPad. Apple CEO Tim Cook regards the segment as "the mother of all markets," and indicative of the "Post-PC era" proclaimed by late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs.

BlackBerry's previous foray into the tablet sector, the PlayBook, proved a disaster for the company. The small form factor tablet never took off, and the company was forced to write down roughly half a billion dollars in unsold inventory.

The launch of BlackBerry 10, though, appears to have slightly altered the company's fortunes. Sales of the all-touchscreen Z10 are as yet unknown, but the firm expects its hardware QWERTY keyboard-enabled Q10 ? highly anticipated among BlackBerry devotees ? to sell very well. Encouraging initial indications from both models ? along with shrinking quarterly losses ? have pushed BlackBerry shares higher.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 101
    drblankdrblank Posts: 3,383member
    I think the should have said Blackberry tablets won't be around in 5 years and that Blackberry tablets are not a good business model. Why? Because Blackberry tablets are a failure.
  • Reply 2 of 101


    It's always dangerous to make any kind of tech projection, especially five years out. But ... I really don't see tablets going the way of netbooks any time soon. Thinner, faster, more capable, sure; gone? Hmmm... no.

  • Reply 3 of 101


    Blackberry isn't known for having keen insights lately. I wonder if they also predict a sudden demand for BlackBerry Bold. :)

  • Reply 4 of 101
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 7,302member
    "We don't know how to make a tablet so we will simply wish them away."

    Did I get that right?

  • Reply 5 of 101
    [QUOTE]BlackBerry CEO predicts tablet market will diminish within five years[/QUOTE]

    Blackberry's first tablet attempt was a dud... even though the tablet market flourished around it and is still growing. Notice all the other tablets that are still on the market today.

    But now the tablet market has no future?
  • Reply 6 of 101
    umrk_labumrk_lab Posts: 550member


    The professionals will leave this market to amateurs ?

  • Reply 7 of 101
    This I don't know but at least I can say that u will not be around after 5 yrs in BlackBerry to validate ur stmt....
  • Reply 8 of 101
    malaxmalax Posts: 1,598member


    "I need to figure out, for my enterprise customers, for my consumers, for my BB10 audience, what can I do that provides them a mobile computing experience in the form factor of a tablet, which goes beyond just the puristic tablet experience."


     


    Uh, what?

  • Reply 9 of 101
    yvvvyvvv Posts: 18member
    While I respect BB, this is some crazy statement. If recent PC and Tablet sales tell us anything for the future, tablets are the way to go.

    Sure their interface can be ported to big screens or surfaces, but they'll keep on eating the PC sales in the forthcoming future. Maybe tablet sales will go down because of the rise of wearable electronics.
  • Reply 10 of 101
    The big screen in my workspace (which I have), doesn't do me much good in Starbucks, on the plane/train, or on my sofa, in a meeting, at a conference or in the hotel. My iPad does, though. Tablets will evolve, sure, but won't disappear for a while.
  • Reply 11 of 101
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,691member


    “In five years, I see BlackBerry to be the absolute leader in mobile computing -- that’s what we’re aiming for,” Heins said. “I want to gain as much market share as I can, but not by being a copycat.”image


     


    This guy is insane. I think that he should be put in a straight jacket and thrown into a padded room.


     


    Blackberry knows nothing about tablets. They are the company behind the hugely catastrophic Playbook after all. "Playtime is over" turned out to be a true phrase, just not in the way that RIM expected.


     


    What success is Blackberry currently having? Making obsolete phones with a hardware keyboard on it, for a small, niche market of dinosaur people out there, who lack the dexterity to type on a touch screen?


     


    Certain CEO's should become comedians, because they'd be better at that job than at their current one.


     


  • Reply 12 of 101


    Thanks. BB is not coming up with any other tablets. Already we have million models of Samsung out there!

  • Reply 13 of 101
    Not thanks for that advice. Geeesh! This guy...Lol
  • Reply 14 of 101
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,715member
    I thought BBY got rid of their dumb CEOs.
  • Reply 15 of 101
    bdkennedy1bdkennedy1 Posts: 1,459member
    Blackberry CEO's don't exactly have a reliable track record of predicting the future.
  • Reply 16 of 101
    I think all the previous comments are on the right track. The Playbook was a failure, so Heins is going to bury his head in the sand, and believe the market is going away. The only thing that is going away is the Playbook. Tablets, iPads, are here and will continue to get better.


  • Reply 17 of 101
    I could see the tablet market replacing the desktop in a few years as they get more powerful and more storage capacity. Eventually you'll have your iPad and just plug in the monitor and keyboard.
  • Reply 18 of 101
    stelligentstelligent Posts: 2,680member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by bdkennedy1 View Post



    Blackberry CEO's don't exactly have a reliable track record of predicting the future.


    Not completely fair or accurate. But, without question, this is a stupid thing for Heins to say.

  • Reply 19 of 101
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,949member
    crhain88 wrote: »
    Blackberry isn't known for having keen insights lately. I wonder if they also predict a sudden demand for BlackBerry Bold. :)

    I don't know if they've had a decent product insight for most of a decade. Most of their responses to a changing market were a bandaid when they needed a tourniquet. They've done tablets, but they screwed themselves for waiting too long to open the tablet up to non-Blackberry customers.

    lkrupp wrote: »
    "We don't know how to make a tablet so we will simply wish them away."

    Did I get that right?

    It would seem so. Tablets seem to be here to stay for a while, at least. They didn't fizzle like the netbooks did.
  • Reply 20 of 101
    nagrommenagromme Posts: 2,834member
    People are twisting his words out of context to make him sound clueless. He's not talking about ALL tablets going away. He's talking very specifically about tablet-style computing devices, such as the iPad and Kindle. He's NOT saying we won't have medicines taken as oral tablets, NOR is he saying we won't have tablets of paper used for arts and crafts.
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