"Bye Bye BlackBerry. How Long Will Apple Last?"

in General Discussion edited January 2014
I thought this was a good read with a fair bit of "humor" (well, depending on where you stand... and whether or not you've owned RIM, Nokia or shares of Microsoft vs. AAPL ). I'm not sure what the rules are here on posting entire articles, so here are some snippets, along with a link to the entire piece on Forbes.

Bye Bye BlackBerry. How Long Will Apple Last?


Just five years ago, “BlackBerry” was virtually synonymous with “smartphones.” It was well on its way to becoming a generic trademark, like Kleenex or Band-Aid, that would seemingly forever be associated with its entire sector. “For many, the Blackberry is a must-have gadget, a wireless hand-held computer that can send e-mail and make phone calls,” noted a 2005 NPR story on the “CrackBerry,” as some BlackBerry addicts referred to the device. (Incidentally, the story compared the BlackBerry to the Palm Treo, an equally popular device at the time.)

Today, however, Research In Motion Ltd. (RIM), the maker of BlackBerry smartphones, is a financial basket case that has come to symbolize just how turbulent life in the modern digital economy can be. On Thursday, RIM announced that it was laying off top execs as revenues continued to plummet and the firm’s stock price hit its lowest mark since 2003. Industry analysts are lowering their projections for the firm and wondering if any corporate suitor—Microsoft is commonly mentioned—might be willing to step in and save the day by taking over the company.

Microsoft also had a huge lead in licensing its Windows Mobile OS to high-end smartphone handset makers until Apple and Android disrupted its business. It’s hard to believe now, but just a few years ago the idea of Apple or Google being serious contenders in the smartphone business was greeted with derision, even scorn. Consider some of the pessimistic predictions that preceded Apple’s entry into the smartphone business:

In December 2006, Palm CEO Ed Colligan summarily dismissed the idea that a traditional personal computing company could compete in the smartphone business. “We’ve learned and struggled for a few years here figuring out how to make a decent phone,” he said. “PC guys are not going to just figure this out. They’re not going to just walk in.”

In January 2007, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer laughed off the prospect of an expensive smartphone without a keyboard having a chance in the marketplace as follows: “Five hundred dollars? Fully subsidized? With a plan? I said that’s the most expensive phone in the world and it doesn’t appeal to business customers because it doesn’t have a keyboard, which makes it not a very good e-mail machine.”

In March 2007, computing industry pundit John C. Dvorak argued that “Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone” since “There is no likelihood that Apple can be successful in a business this competitive.” Dvorak believed the mobile handset business was already locked up by the era’s major players. “This is not an emerging business. In fact it’s gone so far that it’s in the process of consolidation with probably two players dominating everything, Nokia Corp. and Motorola Inc.”

This serves as a classic example of those with a static snapshot mentality disregarding the potential for new entry and technological disruption. Today, less than five years after these predictions were made, Nokia’s profits and market share have plummeted and a struggling Motorola was purchased by Google last summer. Meanwhile, Palm appears dead and Microsoft is struggling to win back all the market share it has lost to Apple and Google in this arena.


  • Reply 1 of 2
    relicrelic Posts: 4,735member
    Well of course Apple will last a long time but I really feel that these are the hay days of Apple. Steve Jobs is unfortunatly no longer with us and as there is very talented people working for Apple I dont think they'll be able to hold onto their crown for much longer.

    I forsee Apple slowly declining by the year 2014 as the wave starts to recede. Who know's really though maybe Apple has a few more tricks up their sleeves.
  • Reply 2 of 2
    There are two things that will symbolize the peak of Apple (for a while)in my opinion. One is that Apple will make big screen TVs and two is when the 'one ring to rule them all' new HQ gets built.
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