BBDoodle: A whole new meaning for BlackBerry Torch in the USA come 2014

BlackBerry is BACK in the USA!
By Kevin Michaluk on 17 Feb 2012 07:12 pm
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It's going to take great products and real effort for BlackBerry to win back the love in the USA. But I believe it will happen. Step 1 is of course building great products. Those are in development now.

We outlined Step 2 this week with our plan to build a more direct relationship with the media, Wall Street and consumers by setting up a BlackBerry USA division complete with its own President.

Step 3 is getting those great products to market. We'll see the first BlackBerry 10 phones hit this year, and hopefully through 2013 we'll see BlackBerry sales continue to rise with support coming from carriers and lots of happy customers. Hopefully we'll see some awesome BlackBerry advertising too.

And by 2014 we should be onto BlackBerry 11 (or maybe 12 or 13 or 14?!), and by then I'm betting the love for BlackBerry in the USA will be soo huge again that people will want to erect statues in honor of the awesomeness of BlackBerry. Or, at least make a modification to an existing one. ;) 

Kevin Michaluk Kevin Michaluk "Founder, Editor in Chief " 3922 (articles) 3285 (forum posts)
30 comments

shiftysdad

Does the face on Miss Liberty look like CBKevin to anybody else?

kemj

Hehehe :) I liked that read.

servo

THIN-ICE this fantasy is all well and good.(its good to dream)but step #1 should be making great products.make a great product and the USA will respond.

Kevin Michaluk

OF COURSE!!!

But I'm talking order of operation here to the end user. The Great Products are in development. While that's happening, you lay the relationship foundation. Then get the products to market. 

servo

THIN-ICE understood.but it remains to be seen if BB10 will be great products.I just would want to make sure your dealing with a great product first.

Madness87

It's funny Kevin is giving advice on how BlackBerry should be run and how to bring it back, when for years he's been their number one cheerleader as they were going downhill.

Anyone could have seen this from 2008. After the Bold 9000, RIM went downhill in nearly all aspects, and yet phone after phone, Kevin kept fawning like a fangirl.

Why is RIM down? Has nothing to do with the USA. It has to do with the fact it got complacent in a cut-throat industry that leaves people behind in a very short time. Just ask Nokia, Palm etc.

RIM kept churning out the same phone over and over with slight marginal upgrades. Kevin was their first defender saying phone after phone was amazing and the best ever, when he clearly didn't see they no longer stacked up to the competition.

Not only did other companies make phones that surpassed BlackBerry in almost all their once dominant areas or catch up where they were lacking, but they are so far ahead now, RIM needs a literal silver bullet.

It's funny how Kevin now claims to know what will save BlackBerry when he didn't see their decline or chose to ignore it.

Even if RIM makes a great new spec phone, so what? Will that persuade people away from a Galaxy S3 or an iPhone 5? Why would people choose BlackBerry when more and more, even business companies have adopted iOS devices for enterprise use etc. I live in Vancouver. I've seen people with every tablet, including a touchpad, but have yet to see a single playbook.

I see great promise with the BlackBerry London. It needs to be ahead of other phones in specs, which DO matter. Even if it's superficial, people want the best specs they can get. That means above 8 megapixels in camera, a top dual-core or even quad-core, battery life over 8 hours, web browsing that surpasses the competition. Keep in mind Safari on the iphone and Chrome soon to be on Android are near flawless mobile browsers.

I think RIM's biggest failing was the App World. They released before Windows and Android marketplace and are now behind with more and more developers leaving.

livejam

Should be holding a PlayBook too!!!

tightlybound

Nice job of cheerleading, but really, ask yourself when the last time was that RIM did something innovative. And no, 10 years ago doesn't count. I'm not holding my breath.

siddo_d

I dont see the point of this article :-?

BKPruitt

I'm sorry. I loved my Crackberry until it was on its last legs. I told everyone that Blackberry just does everything right; great syncing with Outlook, great communications--everything was just right.

Two weeks ago, with no new or contemporary Berries in sight, I broke down and moved to a Windows-based phone (the Titan). It's awesome. It doesn't do everything as perfectly as I'm used to, but it certainly performs better than the current RIM stable. The new "hub" approach greatly reduces key strokes and leaves all my important data easily accessable.

My point: to regain their standing in the Americas RIM will have to contend with some pretty hefty challengers. Microsoft has resources on par with Apple and seems anxious to take advantage of this moment to grab momentum from both Silicon Valley and Waterloo. Only time will tell...

Brianflys

Must not have looked too hard. The OS7 devices are every bit as good as the other phones out there. And it has a cohesive mature system for sharing and syncing your information. And OS10 is coming out, so there is both current systems and a pipeline for new products very will known. If you want something new, that is fine, but don't make it sound lime there are no comparable BB options. You will want to come back within a year.

mousii

+1 Totally agree with the comments about OS7. Great phones, I have the 9900

BKPruitt

I hope you're right about desiring to return to BB in 12-months ... truly. I agonized over the decision. I yearn for RIM to return to their former glory.

I write a little farther down the blog about the "trust gap" that has developed between RIM and their long-term customers. After rushing out to but the Playbook last April, then waiting nearly 12-months for the promised native apps, some of us are wondering if the upgraded OS will be all that is promised--or will we be waiting into 2013 for its fruition.

These are factors being parsed in the minds of a great number of loyal Berrybees as their contracts expire and their phones reach their life expectancies. These are facts that RIM must acknowledge. As I say, I hope things change.

tatame

well,

First, a higher quality piece of hardware
9930 is great. Everything else is cheap plastic with a bad feel to it. IPhones just feel good in your hand. Most of HTC's products are metal & glass as well. They feel good in the palm. BB doesn't. Not the cheap ones anyway.
. The current OS isn't bad, it really isnt. But, Americans want more real estate. They dont wamt dads business phone. They want their own hip, modern phone. Real estate does that.
tons of apps aren't necessary, but people want what their friends have. BB loses apps faster than they add them.
. I had an 8330 ,& didn't realize how great most other parts of it were until I switched to an HTC Arrive. Love the hardware, hate the OS.
Want a 9850 now more than ever. I want the buttons back & my flashing LED

www.hybridroanoke.com

The_Adventist

"We outlined Step 2 this week with our plan to build a more direct relationship with the media...."

I would hope that the elimination of being elusive with their announcement dates/launch dates etc would be part of this plan.

Pick a date. A realistic date. Stick with that date. Be ready by that date. Toying with media and customers isn't the best plan of attack. IMHO anyway.

BKPruitt

The_Adventist has a point. I bought my Playbook on the first day it was available--heck, I bought it when my local Staples opened. We were being promised at that point that native email, calendar and Kindle would be coming within weeks.

It's nearly eleven months later. We HOPE those promises are about to be fulfilled on Tuesday. I still believe Playbook is the finest pad available and has the most potential. But I believe a lot of the most loyal customers a company can have feel screwed-over by Waterloo.

Now they are promising radical new designs and software "before the end of the year." I don't know ...

spencerdl

Sounds like a plan.......like my grandfather used to say..."a plan is better than no plan at all"

johnizomi

Another Great Post, Kevin!,,,, I like your spirit. whether or not it can be realized,,,i don't care. The good things are vision, believe, effort, and hope. I'll stand by you.

Blu-Bear

If Desktop Software 7.0 is any indication, then RIM is continuing with business-as-usual in 2012, meaning the release of well-intentioned but half-baked products. To be fair, RIM compensates their frustrated customers by remaining resolutely silent and leaving them to fend for themselves. So far, the new CEO is just talking the talk...

For me, Step No.1 would be, "Stop f***ing up, for once"

Rootbrian

Half baked? Seems you don't even own a blackberry or playbook. Give it a rest. Buy one and then comment once you've had the experience of a few years. You won't bash again.

Blu-Bear

Pretty big assumption you make there, Rootbrian, and utterly unqualified, not too mention wrong.
Back in the land of facts and figures, even RIM's CEO is forced to acknowledge execution problems. Investors hate what's going on. Customers defect.
My Playbook, which I bought at full price one month after its release, will become a textbook example of "half-baked". The recent release of DM 7.0 should have been an indicator of the new and improved RIM, instead I wasted an entire evening and early morning dealing with its inadequacies while trying to restore my 9780 Calendar.
My first BlackBerry was an 8800 model, Rootbrain (sic), I'm sure you know what that is. As long as longtime RIM supporters like me still post negative comments, RIM still has a shot of returning to relevancy. Once people like me silently move on to "give it a rest" you can have your little make-believe world all to yourself.

napleskahuna

Crackberry Nation, I owe all an apology, we have all gotten angry with RIM in some shape or form and have posted my anger about certain issues and have been labeled as a "troll" however, no matter the likes or dislikes of former CEOs such as Lazardis...and the "other" guy,I feel a change in representation for RIM was well over due! Whatever your likes or dislikes of the new CEO, I think it was well needed and I see Thorstien bringing new and improved that matter to Blackberry!
No more waiting game other than rumored news, this will for sure restore the faith and embolden the name that be... Blackberry! Good Times ahead my fellow friends...Good Times!!

Perjade

Most of you guys are living in fantacy world. BB Will never be that great again. You have to be a little realistic. I have a 9900 and a Playbook. They are OK but not that great. Cannot compete with Apple. I am sorry to hurt your feelings but that is the truth. Anyway I am waiting for the OS 2 for Playbook. I hope that will be nice.

rfalter

'We' outlined the need for a BB USA division????? Wow, wasn't it great that 'we' thought of that. I saw immediate response from RIM indicating what a great idea they thought that was.....

Wouldn't you think with the number of members of the Crackberry forums, certainly the foremost forum dedicated to all things Blackberry, that someone in the upper echelons of RIM might post from time to time thanking all of us for hanging in with them? Nah, but we did get a corrupted new version of Desktop.....I read something about OS 12,13, 14.......is this the SyFy Channel.....I'd bet my bottom dollar that there won't be a properly working OS10 phone out in 2012.....aren't those poor PB owners till waiting for OS2? And March is coming up fast. Think it will work?

Strider2112

Maybe I wasn't around when this question was asked but what happened to BlackBerry 8 or BlackBerry 9? Do they call it BlackBerry 10 because of the model numbers? (10xxx or even 10xx)?

qbnkelt

Love how even a positive blog post is hijacked into a hate thread.

Personally, love all my BB7 devices. Really excited about the next crop...and will be scooping up the first Bold-like. I don't expect BB to overtake Android or iOS. They don't have to in order to keep this consumer happy. I expect them to give me the next step from what I have now. So...very excited about the future.

joaosousa

As I see it Blackberry as always been a niche brand... However the other platforms are getting more popular and competitive in this segment. Losing ones core users is a sign of sure doom. Foresaking one's base audience is just plain stupidity (Microsoft did it in the WM6 to WP7 transition). RIM needs to do much in a short period of time else it'll face the same fate as Palm.

As I see it, in order to make a comeback, RIM needs to:
1- Deliver state of the art hardware ( the current Bold / Torch segment has the hardware specs of a 4 year old device).
2- Deliver a powerful and appealing operating system (judging from my Playbook RIM as a chance to do so... though they still have much much to improve)
3- Competitive pricing ( current top models have the hardware of low/middle segment Android devices )
4- Atract developers ( there is no Blackberry equivalent to XDA Developers... the BlackBerry App World is pretty weak... very few quality app in many segments and quality free software is almost unexistent... )

RIM has become an underdog. Most of my more corporate minded friends are either getting idevices or galaxies... It still has a fighting chance though (that is if they can stop the current bleeding in their core userbase ).