CrackBerry video interview with BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins!

By Kevin Michaluk on 22 Mar 2013 02:42 pm EDT

With the Z10 officially arriving in the USA this week, BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins was on location in New York City to celebrate the launch and spread the word via the US media that BlackBerry is back.

The CrackBerry team is also in NYC right now, so we were able to drop by Thorsten's hotel room on the eve of the launch and spend twenty minutes talking about the US launch and a whole lot more.  

We had some fun with this interview and did it up video style - be sure to watch our edited 7 minute video above. It's a great interview with a lot of honest straight talk from Thorsten. We cover a lot of topics. Beyond talking about the importance of regaining mind share and market share in the US, I even ask Thorsten the toughest BlackBerry 10 question of them all.... if you had to choose between the Z10 and Q10 (and your answer can't be both), which one would you choose?

I want you all to sit back and watch the video, so am going to keep the write up on this one short and sweet. WATCH THE VIDEO. We'll follow up soon with our longer interview write up. Enjoy the show!

Reader comments

CrackBerry video interview with BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins!



My near 50 year old eyes chose a Z10 over a Q10 for the extra screen real estate Thorsten also sought. It is great hearing Thorsten thanking customers for keeping the faith in BB. However, as a shareholder I'd also like to hear him say the same to BB's shareholders. It's hasn't been an easy journey. I'm most interested to hear when BB will be scheduling an investor day that they cancelled last year. Shareholders are waiting for such an event to be engaged in BB's future.

Great interview Kevin. Love how open and genuine Thorsten always comes across. Refreshing to have a company want to meet the needs of consumers instead of forcing them to adopt ridiculous habits or just accept the simplest features are not available.
TeamBlackBerry all the way!

Posted via CB10

Thanks to you Mr.Heins! FYI; I have money on hand to buy a Q10 so send me one. LOL. Let's get that on Sprint soon enough!

Good interview that touched on BBRY's struggles, past, and current direction. Very subtle, but he mentioned that women like the touch keyboard of the q10. He's correct. I know quite a few ladies who are waiting to see that q10. Glad to hear that BB10 is not just a cheap knockoff but a new experience. I'm very curious to see what other BB10 devices are in store for this year.

Well holy cow balls! Now this is truly an honor to see!! How may years were you trying to get a sit down like this with Jim and Mike? Just outstanding and i feel so humbled. Bravo gentlemen!! And to you too of course Thor. :)

Thorsten Heins is the first "human" CEO I've seen...human as in how down-to-earth and close to the ordinary consumer (this goes to BB the company as well, few large companies ever bother to really listen to their consumer feedbacks). Most CEO's feel very distant and aloof with all those other rich execs but Heins is something else. Kudos to Heins and hope that he can steer BB all the way back to the top.

Good interview Kevin!

First thing I noticed ? Even before pressing play ? Kevin is wearing a DRESS SHIRT, not a t-shirt, under the jacket. Looks good Kevin !

very pleased and impressed with Blackberry CEO! .. and the Z10 and Q10 are awesome phones!! .

... this is just the beginning for Blackberry and their customers!!! …. a lot more to come!!!

Great interview. Kevins questions held nothing back, and Thorsten ws very human and seems connected to the people. We are with you as BlackBerry fans of CrackBerry World. 3-28-13

Good interview Kevin. I agree with Taede, Promote promote all around town. TV AD, banners, flyers, subways or train stations, I see other smartphone being promoted on train stations, and on buses here in Los Angeles. I don't see Blackberry. U.S. media loves money, give it to them and they will do the job for you. Come to Los Angeles and see, Take one of the buses here that goes from downtown on Wilshire blvd through Beverly Hill to Santa Monica and place a good graphic AD on the buses, on bus station, you will get some good attention to BB10. Again Taede is right, promote, promote promote.

Thanks, Thorsen, for talking with us directly (well, through Kevin). :) I'm in Canada and have had the Z10 (Zed or Zee it doesn't matter--we're one family) for a month and a half. I love it--the peek into the Hub and all my messages is genius! Coming from a 9900 physical keyboard I was worried about the touchscreen after disliking the iPhone 4's virtual one. After a couple of weeks, however, the Z10 keyboard knew my style and no matter how I type it comes out right. I'm glad BlackBerry is entering the US market as I know there are a lot of Americans waiting on it. It's now the carriers' turn to step up to the plate with BlackBerry.

excellent! z10 makes great hits in Indonesia. Sales went crazy! they even plan to up the price this week officially. glad i bought mine already...

Really enjoyed that interview Kevin. I always enjoy hearing Thor speak in interviews but this one was different. What I loved the most is Thor's honesty about BlackBerry 10 and how good it feels that blackberry kept fighting and created and released a new OS and devices. It was refreshing. I'm looking forward to future products launching And to see BlackBerry rise in the market share.

BlackBerry Z10 and 32gb PlayBook

Great interview, with a great CEO! Keep moving BB, keep moving CB, keep moving guys!

Cheers from Germany

Kevin, Thorsten looks so damn exhausted. Hope u guys took good care if him. I even cannot imagine how much work it is for him right now. N don't forget the pressure - this pressure!!!

Posted via CB10

Just got mine today. Watching the video made me regret for not getting the white one. But I'm excited nonetheless. Thanks #teamblackberry for keeping us going!

Posted via CB10

Thorsten is now truly 'Mr Heins'.
He has grown from COO to a TOP CEO. What a joy in life.
Here's to you Mr Heins and to Blackberry. May you both have a wonderful innings!
S. Dey

Ya know what's interesting? Where I live, we say both Zee and Zed, and frankly Zed sounds better and more official.

Posted via CB10

Thorsten is the Guy.
What a turn around for BlackBerry, BB10 is definitely the 3rd way and I'm very glad that BlackBerry and CrackBerry have worked so hard to push this platform forward in such a short space of time.

People with open minds and hearts will at least give BlackBerry 10 a try, and in doing so, find that change can be a very positive experience indeed.

Congratulations to all who believed.

Great interview. Video off in grains. But it is very important. I like the new version.

Posted via CB10

great interview.. glad to hear some of the questions answered here.. this wasn't a typical media interview where the interview was trying to see if blackberry is going to make it or not.. blackberry is here.. and is here to stay..

Really proud of how far and how fast you turned this company around. Had faith all along and was glad I stuck it thru. Either way, there was no other better alternative if it didn't, I was prepared to go down with the ship...

Great interview as usual from Thor... He is personable and charismatic. makes you feel passionate about the new company and its products.

Thor for president! Lol... ok maybe not

Posted via CB10

You can see the excitement on Thorsten's face.. he genuinely loves what his team has come up with. To be so proud of a product. ..that's awesome! I've never seen someone more excited about blackberry than Kevin before today. :)

Great interview. I found it very comforting. Thorsten Heins exudes confidence. He is not a "jabberwocky".

I always love hearing him talk, great how involved he is in the media. The interview was a lot of the same stuff we have heard though. I want to find him at a bar one night and really hear what he thinks and spill some secrets about apps ect haha

Posted via CB10

You are both awesome! Loved the interview. Put a smile on my face and can't wait until the 28th to get my white Z10 and start selling the awesomeness to others.

Thoroughly enjoyed the interview! What I liked most is that Thorsten noted that phones shouldn't be compared to Apple iPhones, which is true. I'm looking forward to playing with a Z10 very soon!

I like what the CEO is doing for Blackberry, he's the "Rockstar" of Z10, instead of napping at the office, from time to time he visit places to promote the Blackberry brand, which is good all I wish he can throw an iPhone out of the window (hint : Stephen Elop) LOL

good job, Kevin!!! lookin' sharp & gettin' it done,,, & what, have you gone full gangsta??? between the sign flashes, hip hop/rap articles/intros & pimpin' suit, i think you're about to get your ghetto card...

Just played this video on my Z10 and watched it on my 70"... man that was awesome. I love this phone

Posted via CB10

Really great!
as someone has written, "You can see the excitement on Thorsten's face.. he genuinely loves what his team has come up with." With this excitement I'm sure BB will make it, even if it seems do be a tough start into the US market.

Kevin is mentioning an earlier interview with Thorsten last year, can you still watch this interview somewhere (link)?

Great interview...And Thorsten is correct....why compare to Apple ? I am sure this will be the start of #Applecrumble .....I have to wait until November to get a X10 because of my contract!

I figured Thor would go with the Z10; very well done interview
Proud owner of a Bold 9900 (soon Z10) and a PlayBook

"Where's the back button? Where's the home key?"
- BlackBerry 10 naysayers

Great interview CB. Thorsten was great, candid. A really likeable guy.

Posted via a BlackBerry 10 - iPhone killer device

Great interview CB. Thorsten really comrs across as candid

Posted via a BlackBerry 10 - iPhone killer device

It's pretty silly for him to keep mentioning iPhone is outdated when your software is based on gestures and UI from that very brand worse yet when it takes you this long to release an OS that could of been out nearly two years ago...

Worsest interview ever. 7 minutes advertisment. No critical questions nothing. What a waste of time and opportunity missed.


A) This was 7 minutes of a 20 minute interview. More to come. Including some tough questions.

B) In case you didn't know it, RIM is in their "quiet" period right now leading up to earnings. There is a LOT they can't talk about right now - so if you ask the "hard questions" related to numbers, etc., you won't get answers. 

I hear what you're saying in your comment... but don't think you fully get how it works too. Wasn't an opportunity missed. Asked all the questions I could.

Interview was like this, school boy Kevin (who claims to be the voice of BB users worldwide) ..'Ahhh..Ahhh Mr Heins may I ask you...' in response media professional Heins 'We are the best, we have the greatest... bla bla bla...'

Kevin is pretty representative of the community, at least, the one on CrackBerry (3M+) probably a little bit of the whole 80M community...but anyway he has never been shy of criticisms towards BlackBerry when they "deserved" it. But here, is a different story, the Z10 is a remarkable device, far superior than anything out there, from an experience point of view. From a spec point of view, new devices will fill the gap it is not an issue. Mobile computing is the future of BlackBerry and BB10 is the right platform for that.

So, this is an interview in a positive spin that goes with the launch. OF course, we don't expect Kevin to bash Thorsten or to ask him vicious questions which at this point would not make any sense anyway....

What a legend I think thorsten rebuilt blackberry he really is for the people unlike Steve jobsworth

Kevin you should of quizzed him on the dock and when it would be out!!

Posted via CB10

BlackBerry has a secret weapon, 80 million salesman! Get your phone out there show people how great it is.

This will be the greatest comeback of all time.

Time to sell like hell.

Posted via CB10

I think that Heins is one of those CEOs that kind of have this genuine way built into them. That makes the company way more "people friendly" and is truly a change compared to many other company CEOs.

I'm the only one in my friend group who stayed loyal to BlackBerry,despite all the frustrations from time to time the old OS could bring, and can't wait to get my hands on a Q10 to flip all my friends off! :) Go Berry! Awesome vid btw.

Enjoyed the interview, Kevin. Met Thorsten in NYC in January. He seems genuinely earnest and humble. When we voiced admiration for what he's done with the company he was quick to give the credit to his employees. It is easy to see why he would generate a great deal of loyalty in the company. If the Z was crappy, it would just be the end of a sad story, but this thing is a marvel of hardware and software engineering.

Great interview. Nice office, nice view, nice suits! I'm due an upgrade and my phone is getting old, but my 9360 is still an amazing phone. I was wavering as to what to get next, but I'm getting a Z10 when my contract expires in two weeks. I've had a good long play with iPhone, and it is a nice device but it hasn't got all the things I love about my BlackBerry...bbm, blackberry travel, the ease of use, great call quality, password keeper, integration of sicial networks and email and calendar. I had a play with a Z10 and was convinced within minutes...feels so good in the hand, and has all the BlackBerryness that I love. Go team Blackberry! :D

Awesome interview.

I love that Thor is so real... Keep pushing apps BlackBerry, the only thing people complain about now are the apps. Show them what this device can do when it comes to apps. That is all that people these days are loyal to, but with the push I've seen, I know BlackBerry realizes this.

Keep up the great work.