Andrew Bocking, Executive Vice President of BBM, leaves BlackBerry (of his own volition)

By Kevin Michaluk on 10 Feb 2014 02:27 pm EST
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Executive Vice President of BBM, Andrew Bocking, has left BlackBerry. Bocking had most recently been the head of the BBM team after moving from his position as Executive VP, Software Product Management and Ecosystem at BlackBerry where he played a huge role in bringing BB10 phones to market. It hasn't been confirmed if he was fired or chose to depart on his own, but BlackBerry has confirmed that he is no longer with the company.

I can confirm that Andrew Bocking, EVP, BBM has made the decision to leave BlackBerry. We thank him for his years of leadership and contribution.

This is yet more evidence that major change is taking place at BlackBerry, since John Chen took over the reigns from Thorsten Heins as CEO. We've talked to Andrew Bocking plenty of times over the years - he's been a fixture at the company for as long as CrackBerry has been around. Rumor had it he may actually have been superhuman or cyborg. He was known for being the guy who would reply to emails within a minute, any time of day, three hundred sixty five days a year. ;)

We definitely wish him all the best at wherever he lands next.

*Update: I confirmed that Andrew wasn't let go from BlackBerry, but chose to resign. And no, he didn't submit his resignation via BBM Status update. *

 

156 comments

kscribs

Why?

Posted via CB10

newbaskerville

I don't know how to take this.

Posted via CB10

seascape

He decided to go do something else. People do that. It's good to hear he was not forced out.

Thanks, Mr. Bocking, for helping bring BBM to the masses. It's appreciated.

birdman_38

How do you know that for certain? He's not going to admit he was fired or forced out.

Wendy Reinhart

The new euphemism for "fired or let go" is "decided to pursue other opportunities".

It is cute, but completely transparent, like the last time 5 executives "decided to pursue other opportunities" on exactly the same day. What a coincidence LOL

mikeycollins13

Bungled and delayed launch of BBM?

Rub3n5

Same here. If he was very good at what he did (sounds like he was) and chose to leave, that could mean he doesn't like the direction of the company and/or the new leadership group.

Wendy Reinhart

What did he do that was so good?

BlackberryFan777

He was a big part of BlackBerry's success as a project manager and product manager who got both hardware and software in the early days. The guy was a key part of most major BlackBerry initiatives back when the company, at its peak, was selling about 7,000 devices an hour.

Yes, the BBM launch was bungled, and yes, Andrew was probably forced out. When the company's new, totally incompetent, CEO tells you that he's taking your independent team, a likely future spinoff, and rolling it under Enterprise Services so that you'll need to answer to John Sims, a guy whose only real qualification is loyalty to the new CEO, well.... that's a strong signal you're not wanted. And, well, BlackBerry is shrinking towards profitability. Chen is just going to try to resell old enterprise clients. In the end, is this lame enterprise trek really a journey appropriate for a man who had a significant part in making BlackBerry the great company it once was? I'm not sure. If I were Bocking, I would have left rather than allowing my team to be steered by Sims/Chen. Fired or not, his reputation and the respect of others within the company will probably lead to him taking no small amount of talent with him... if he so choses.

axllebeer

Agreed. I'm a little shaken to be honest. With all the great things that have been happening with BBM for the last year, I thought he was doing a good job. Must've just got a better offer or something. I can't believe that he wouldn't approve of the direction that BBM has gone.

Posted via CB10 using the power of " Q "

mandony

It is great to have a great IM service (just another),
BUT...
the name of the game ... make money for BB
There has been no disclosed way to make a profit.

The BB company has failed to sell phones ..
what good is it to give away the BBM for free if you don't need a BB phone to make it work.

Time is now for BB to select an exec who has a firm plan to build profit.

birdman_38

It could be a difference in philosophy. John Chen wants to make BBM more enterprise focused while Andrew Bocking built the consumer experience.

koolrosh

I think you're right

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axllebeer

This might be it exactly.

Posted via CB10 using the power of " Q "

WH33LZz

Agreed :)

Posted via CB10

Anthony Roberts5

Sigh...Sad times but I still believe in Blackberry and that they will regain their former glory...:). I have the Z30 and if they continue on that build quality and continue to improve BBM cross platform they will be just fine :).

The_Merovingian

YIKES! I agree, I hope this doesn't negatively effect BBM's progress either. I was loving what they have been doing with it. Hopefully he left the blueprints behind. Wish him well.

Blackberry keeps Johnson National LLC moving
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LeroyP09

Wow. Didn't see the coming. I know what place I am but not gonna say it. Good read tho

Posted via CB10

rollingrock1988

What kinda crap is that?

Where the hell is this guy going?

Emirati

Life goes on.

Posted via CB10

Bdot-1

And so does Mr Andrew Bocking. Over to Samsung or Google in exactly 1 year where they will listen to his ideas and probably pay him more. I believe he was held back from his potential at RIM.

Posted by a leaky CB10.1

Wendy Reinhart

He was part of the fail team run by the previous group of management. He was fired by John Chen. The dead weight had to go and any links to the old, slow, arrogant way of thinking had to be AXED.

Of course, everyone these days "leaves on their own to pursue other opportunities", it is the new corporate bs jargon for "FIRED".

BlackberryFan777

Bocking wasn't a Thorstein hire. I think he went to work for RIM in or around 2000-2001.

LeroyP09

Kevin what do you make if it. Maybe a article in pros and cons??

Posted via CB10

Beesh1

Now this is what you call unexpected! Stock dropped.

mandony

WRONG
As of today's close, BB stock is UP a half percent
while the rest of the DJI was flat.

jd914

It's still an F rated stock

mandony

Let us look at the competitors:

The giant Samsung stock is not traded in the US, so it is hard to say, based upon the same product mix, how it will compare.
Apple stock, from three months ago until today is flat.
BB stock, from three months ago until today is up 62%.

So, it depends upon how the analysts took at the companies. If they, or their clients, have heavy stock positions, one-way or the other, they may give a poor rating to the underdogs.

BerryRipe

I have no opinion on this but I wish him the best and I'm confident that Mr. Chen and BlackBerry will go forward from here.

Keep The Faith  BlackBerry Q10 

BBPandy

Not sure I would believe Jonathan Geller (BGR) & their "he was fired because he wasn't happy with BlackBerry & wanted to carry an Android" statement.

mrlahjr

Geller needs a spanking and his whole blog put on time out.

FeitaInc

Why would you fire the guy responsible for the multi platform initiative that is BBM for carrying a phone from one of the ecosystems that app is being developed for? Makes no sense...

/BGR

Posted via CB10

BBPandy

Well according to BGR:
"One source of ours tells us he was let go and that BlackBerry is rolling up the BBM group into the enterprise unit and that Andrew was displeased with BlackBerry as whole, replacing his personal phone with an Android phone instead of using one of BlackBerry’s products."

br14

My guess is it isn't working out as intended (what has happened to BBM Channels for example?). And there have been some notable failures with BBM for iPhone and Android.

Not sure why anyone who has the first ounce of loyalty to BlackBerry would frequent BGR. It's a long time since they had any inside knowledge of BlackBerry (especially since they have such a close relationship with Wozniak).

Jerale Hoard

I heard John Chen actually allowed BYOD at BlackBerry.

Posted via CB10

br14

Everyone gets a BlackBerry.

Anyone with a Z30 is hardly likely to carry a lesser phone.

BlackberryFan777

People at BlackBerry have used different devices for some time now. In fact, Thorstein Heins was very fond of the Samsung Galaxy S3. Most BlackBerry employees are given BlackBerry devices -- that's an age-old tradition. And many employees chose to purchase additional devices at a discount. Chen didn't change much other than retreating from BlackBerry's potential as a player in the platform wars.

DaedalusIcarusHelios

Wasn't Alex Kinsella involved with BBM too (BBM Channels Manager)? Could this be due to organizational changes in the BBM group? CrackBerry needs some investigative journalism on this subject...

Wendy Reinhart

What did Alex Kinsella contribute to blackberry other than acting like a clown? Zero technical expertise.

DaedalusIcarusHelios

That was his public persona. What do you know about his roles at BB, other than things he tweeted and posted to BBM Channels? What makes you able to evaluate his technical expertise or lack thereof? Unless you worked with him or know someone who did, I think that's an unfair assumption to make based on him being active in social media.

Wendy Reinhart

The guy has a degree in Russian and European studies - not exactly a technical genius. LOL

BlackberryFan777

Alex was primarily working in public relations. I didn't even know he was managing the BBM Channels project.

Jonathank

FIRE EVERYONE... Change Change Change... Get Rid Of All of them Chen... Seriously these old Guys have to go

Posted via CB10

mikeycollins13

I second that! Send the home in a G5 too. true Blackberry style!

Notcho

I'm glad I'm not the only one, if it hasn't worked for many years then there's something wrong. FIRED!
Or how John would say it, FILED!
Get it, cuz he's Chinese

Posted via CB10 on my Zed10

Observation Junkie

This doesn't sound like good news

Catapulted from my Z10.

Danny Ocean

This is standard practice when a new CEO comes on board. They typically start to replace their leadership team with people they are familiar with from other organizations.

Posted via CB10

BBPandy

Yep & also, some people don't like the new leadership and so they quit

alan510

Agreed. Change at the top is happening and is expected to happen when you replace the CEO. Chen is building 4 business units and it looks like he is putting a President at the top of each unit. Perhaps he has someone in mind for that top job (if it happens) and it wasn't Mr. Bocking. Don't know but it's possible. In that scenario, he'd likely decide to leave rather than stay. At the very least, I think we can expect another announcement regarding who is going to head the BBM business unit at BlackBerry.

FastLane228

I'm sure he can be replaced...

crazycanuck329

Can't we all!?

...we are all connected...

Puz_zled

LikeTHAT! At least that's what my wife told me recently!

Posted via CB10

BionicKris

Haha!

Posted via the incredible BlackBerry Z10

G-bone

I don't know why, but I'm not going to panic or read into it. Geller, as I've said so many times before, is neither a boy nor a genius.
Thank-you, Andrew, for all your good work. Hope things are well with you.
I look forward to the future of BlackBerry with optimistic expectations.
Change happens (or it should) .

#IchooseBlackBerry10
ETC.

Posted via CB10

Shadberry Bold

If it's raining outside, it is apparent.

Posted via CB10

Markiee

Will it affect the upcoming release of BBM 2.0?

jojo beaconsfield

What I've seen of him, I liked ,Oh well.Stock took a little hit on the news ,who's going to replace him?

parapep10

Not to worry. Great soldier but it was coming. Chen has replaced all four large segments of BlackBerry now. Bockin was the last of the four.
He was great for BBM but Chen wants his own guy.

Posted via CB10

alan510

Still think there's possibly an announcement for the top job at QNX. Nothing has been announced for that position which you would think would be higher than a Vice-president level job.

br14

Why? Has Dan Dodge left? Can't see them getting rid of the founder in a hurry.

alan510

My bad, he is QNX's CEO isn't he?

Kaye_max008

As long as my z10 is still running as smooth as like now and with this amazing keyboard,

He can go
Will be replaced

Posted via CB10

BB Super Junior

I hope it's for good reason because he seems to have with him a good deal of knowledge capital. BlackBerry can't afford to lose momentum.

Aka S.Jizzle Z30STA100-5/10.2.1.1925

Wendy Reinhart

"Knowledge capital". Such as?

Bluenoser63

Has the roll out of BBM across platform been timely, effective and smooth? Has the performance and stability of BBM on other platforms been as good as on BB devices? If you say "No" to either question, that might be why he is no longer at Blackberry.

The old management seems to accept complacency and admire friendship, long time workers over results. Not this management.

jojo beaconsfield

@Bluenoser63,....you hit the nail on the head.

ptpete

Did Bocking say no to cross platform BBM 5-6 years ago. If so, I'd say it's time for him to leave, regardless of any talent or current progress in BBM.

muddberry

Hope Chen doesn't get to carried away with the firings. Getting rid of good people just to bring his own. There are good people there.

Posted via CB10

br14

The same good people that took the world leading smartphone company and drove it off a cliff?

There are good people. Managed by not so good people.

bbdodgersdude

Wasn't there problems with the BBM app with ios a few weeks ago. Where ios users sent BBM but it didn't work. Maybe his team didn't fix the problems in time. Maybe this is Chen way of saying no more problems with BlackBerry and letting problems go by without a fix in a timely manner.

Posted via CB10

crackbrry fan

Good riddance! There gave been too many complaints about BBM, J perhaps now they can place someone competent in the position.

Posted via CB10

06nasti

You will never know the true story this early. He may have left on his own, got fired, or given the opportunity to leave.

Posted via CB10

Wendy Reinhart

Fired. The new corporate bs is "left to pursue other opportunities", it sounds great but doesn't pass the bs test especially when 5 executives at BB left the same day, all to pursue other opportunities.

digitalsurfboard

something is rotten in the state of denmark.

i know of people that are praying for a severance package cause of the mess they perceive.

JasonGallagher

I don't know much about him or the politics with this decision, but I do know that I'm not happy with how xbbm was released or with the progress of where xbbm is now vs in October.

Aside from the feat of delivering xbbm, which shouldn't be understated, their focus with being able to improve the experience for android and iOS users doesn't seem there. Instead of serious reliability bug fixes, all I read is about find-a-friend updates and channels.

I hope this change means Chen is bringing in someone who can better oversee this messaging division and be a real cross-platform IM contender, and really soon.

Go BlackBerry!

Posted via CB10

nutellapr

Good riddance. The whole BBM multi platform debacle, the lack lustre channels design and adoption and missing API integration in BlackBerry 10 BBM calls for someone with a better vision of what BBM should and could be.

Posted via CB10

wincyUt

We all have to remember that "NO ONE IS INDISPENSABLE" regardless of how good the person is. When the dust settles, I am sure we will all know why.
Anyway, wishing Andrew good luck in his future endeavours..

bradpromac

Well said, coupled with the fact that some people just do not like change!

On my awesome BlackBerry Z30

Wendy Reinhart

What exactly did he do that was "good"? LOL

kennyiceberry

Headline somewhat contradict content...?

Posted by the inimitable Z10 handheld system

40blind40

The way I read this , he was probably asked to leave, Blackberry under Chen is looking for results.
BBM has had a few hiccups and this updates coming within months Bs just isn't Chen's style. I see this as
he was not performing in the position he was put in and was asked to leave. I can't see him just quitting when he was given this position only back in June. Result are what Blackberry needs, timely announcements, and deliver what the customers wants now not later. Good luck to him

kennyiceberry

That makes sense to me. I hope Chen's C Suite has plans to bring in a winner to replace him. So far that seems to be a pattern for areas of BlackBerry which could be deemed to be 'failing'. We don't know whether these personnel changes have been definitively for the better yet though. We have to wait up to a year to know for sure, I would guess.

Posted by the inimitable Z10 handheld system

kjpeigan

Keep in mind, Chen is a software animal himself...I'm sure he has someone lined up with software knowledge and expertise to continue a bold new path for BBM's future...

Rocking the Z30 Regina SK Canada

tnewton85

Company needs to take action, stop all the talking and planning.

Drop this 8 core phone this summer instead of 2015 if they want to be taken seriously.

Posted via CB10

LamarStarr

This isn't John Chenks doing

Posted via CB10

Supa_Fly1

^ I'll have two of what you're smoking. Stop sucking the "Sack" will you ;) Honestly, this is what Mr. Chen is known for (if chenks was a mobile spelling mistake on your part). Sybase anyone?!

J_R_TheMotorMan

To reply to an email that fast, he had to be using a legacy BlackBerry, because, email sync on BB10 is no less than 5 min. Least that's what mine says in the account setup section. So, he in fact, is a cyborg or he has better sync capabilities on his 10 device than the rest of Us.

BBW Lovers Unite- OOLONG. The Eye of The OOLONG :C00121B8B

leehardballer12

I get my emails nearly instantaneous. Pretty much like texting.

Posted via CB10

LamarStarr

U guys need to post the reason!!!!

Posted via CB10

Dhruv Brahm

I think he took down BBM on his way out.

Posted via CB10

Paul Callahan

His Contributions to Blackberry and in turn to us the Blackberry people have been great and monumental. Thanks on behalf of myself and other Blackberry users as well. Best of Luck! : )

Posted via CB10

BlackberryFan777

I'll name one. Andrew managed the very successful effort to add NFC to the BlackBerry platform amongst other duties in 2010 - 2011. Apple will probably finally add decent support in iOS 8 this year and Android support has been spotty compared to Bocking's efforts, which helped generate industry partnerships for BlackBerry that are important. In many ways, he was responsible for finally getting BB10 out the door, although he'd be the first to tell you that was a company-wide effort.

I think if Mike L. and Qualcomm had gotten their deal past the cancer that is the "Warren Buffett of Canada," Andrew would have successfully spun BBM off into a major skype competitor. No idea what it'll do as part of Enterprise Services...

New_Z10

So what has NFC fine? Who talks about that? Who cares aside from a few here perhaps.

Posted via CB10

Nicholas Kathrein

NFC has been spotty on Android? I've had Android since the HTC G1 and i don't remember when NFC was added but there has never been any issues with NFC on Android. Has there been a huge use for it since it came out? Not really but the support and functionality has been consistent. Can you tell me what you referring to?

BlackberryFan777

I meant that NFC deployment has been spotty in the sense that, while your HTC G1 may have implemented it, others did not. This made NFC less valuable because you never knew if someone's phone had it. But, with a couple of exceptions, BlackBerry's support has been there across the portfolio. I use it as part of a wireless charging setup with a Z30. And I used it to share files and contacts with other BlackBerry users, albeit not with strangers.

But, my point wasn't that NFC is super cool, it was that it is a hardware-software integration problem, which made it a difficult commitment to implement within BlackBerry's structure, but Bocking got it done. It's just one little example of management skills moving things along despite a lot of momentum to stay put. But, Andrew was a manager. I'm not giving him credit for inventing NFC or any of the greatness of BlackBerry during the mid-2000s or for navigating around the nightmare of the BBM infrastructure, I'm just saying that he's proven himself to be an excellent manager and whatever company picks him up -- if he chooses to continue working -- will have gained value that BlackBerry will have lost. That's all.

Nicholas Kathrein

Pretty much all Android phones have NFC. BB makes their phones so they decide which have it and which don't Google doesn't choose that. The makers of the phones do. Below is a large list. Thanks

http://www.nfcworld.com/nfc-data/android/

BlackberryFan777

Yes, that's true now and has been for a couple of years. The main thing is that he was a player within BlackBerry who had the respect and the knowledge to make things happen. That's not necessarily such a big deal in a small entrepreneurial environment, but it is within a company that's large and has too many people with too much of a say. I think part of the problem here is that people think because he was a manager that the software efforts and OS restructuring he helped manage weren't real achievements of his. But, simply getting everyone on the same page in an organization like BB is not easy.

For what it's worth, my recollection is that when BlackBerry first introduced NFC into the Bold 9900, many hardware vendors choosing Android did not support the standard. Up until that point BB had been very proprietary and rarely integrated standards into its systems, at all. That's changed, of course, but from a management position, even with Mike L. enthusiastic, it couldn't have been totally smooth sailing. Bockings push for BlackBerry support was a big deal for BlackBerry although Apple's refusal to support the standard really reduced its utility. Android's initial support was only for part of the standard and I think that's what hurt it so much and weighed heavily into Apple's decision not to support NFC. In regards to the OS, if I remember Android was early to the game in sort of implementing, but late to the game in providing a fuller implementation. But, why does any of this history really matter. Bocking helped get NFC into BlackBerry's OS when it was already growing somewhat stagnant. That's a worthy achievement. And, what's her name said, "just name one." So, I did.

El Platanero

Reading these responses is like listening to a broken record. I remember the days when I used to panic when someone left. Now I just sit back and wait until the actual growth starts. It doesn't matter how they have working anymore. Blackberry needs an overhaul. I'm glad names are changing. I don't carry a blackberry anymore but I can't wait until they give me a reason to come back.

Posted via my sexy Note 3. Big hands ;-)

br14

I take it you can't get hold of a Z30.

I looked at the Note 3. Nice phone if you can get past the most confusing OS in the world.

The Z30 on the other hand is sublime.

GreekboyD

I've seen countless Z30 in discount bins next to the Playbooks where I live.

br14

You'll have to let me know where that is. I'm always on the lookout for low cost Z30's for friends and family.

You're sure they're Z30's right? Hardly anyone sells them in store.

Doolittle2

You must be thinking of the Z10. The Z30 is still selling for over $500 in the US.

Posted via Z30

PG923

Yeah, where?

Posted via CB10

El Platanero

Z30 is the size of a S4. I had the S4 for a short time and that is because of the size. I really do have big hands and although it isn't an issue where I couldn't continue with the z10 or s4 for lack of comfort but man was it ice when I got this big screen. And the of its only as confusing as you leave it. Just like I had my Z I keep my profile quite simple on my note.

Posted via my sexy Note 3. Big hands ;-)

tsquare

Well... I think that we can confirm that he didn't retire off of his BBY stock options.

People... rats & sinking ships. This one must have found better cheese somewhere else.

Or the water got up over his knees...

br14

Or he was asked to walk the plank...

beantownwindsorite

This is good news. Out with the old, in with the new.

Posted via CB10

rickster2611

Mr Chen isn't messing about.

BlackBerry can't afford to slip up at any point.

Any problems with BBM for iOS and Android will definitely get his back up.

I'm thinking he stepped down before he was pushed.

BlackBerry cant do what they did before.

NO MORE!!!!!!

BlackBerry has to get into its head that this is a RESULTS business. This has to be the mantra for all the departments.

Posted via CB10

GreekboyD

Hey Rickster, trade in your outdated/underpowered brick for a new iPhone/Android. This guy cashed in his chips and got the fuck out before the Titanic got fully submerged. Tools like you remain on the ship's deck sipping Cosmpolitans with nary a clue as to the gravity of the whole reality.

I won't even toss you a life preserver as I read about the news from my Note 3.

Peace out, small fry.

iwasspartacus

Chuckle. Greeks giving advice? How's your banking industry fella?

Posted via CB10

GreekboyD

No idea. I just enjoy rogering BB fanboys.

Giro_UK

Guessing Samsung have offered him a big bonus.

Posted via CB10

Prem WatsApp

Well, give someone else a chance to have a go at it!

iPhone for me? Scr... ahem Q that! (posted from the latter)

BlackberryFan777

I'll be sorry to see him go. The BBM launch was rockier than we'd hoped, but Bocking was strong managerial talent with the potential to do great things with BB. I can understand the decision to leave, though. In many way, the company decided to give up the race when it hired John Chen. Chen can probably make the company profitable again simply by focusing on upgrading existing enterprise customers, but the market and mindshare lost in the US since BB failed to go private has been considerable. If Chen builds a great sales infrastructure that can expand beyond the shrinking "enterprise" niche than that's great news. But, Bocking dedicated much of his career to building BlackBery and that meant something. In the end, BlackBerry isn't BlackBerry under John Chen. I wish Bocking the best in all his future endeavors.

I also think that BBM4ALL could benefit from a relaunch with BBM Audio & BBM Video, which should have been there in the initial launch as BBM's real competitor in the long run is Skype and not whatsapp or other services that will never adequately monetize. Still, I don't think Bocking was to blame for this. I actually think that BBM with AV should have launched at the same time BB10 did, so as to increase the chatter about BB, but that would have meant starting earlier and that was likely not Bocking's call.

br14

"I actually think that BBM with AV should have launched at the same time BB10 did, so as to increase the chatter about BB"

And if BB10 was launched in 2008 the iPhone would never have taken off.

The problem for BlackBerry has always been their inability to turn around software quickly enough.

While BB10 is a terrific OS, the delay in launching the completed OS (10.2.1) is the primary cause of their demise.

Had they have leveraged the BB7 OS as an interim measure (perhaps running the Java components of BB7 on QNX) they'd have maintained a reasonable market share while they completed the OS rewrite.

A major strategic mistake that led to a year without new product, and a consequent huge drop in sales.

Wendy Reinhart

He had zero technical expertise and the BBM launch was a FAILURE. He was fired.

BlackberryFan777

You are probably correct insofar as it seems he was demoted to a point most probably knew he couldn't accept. But, you are wrong that he had zero technical expertise. He's one of the industry's best technical managers and was educated in electrical and computer engineering. He helped lead a number of BBOS updates and was a big part of the software side of BlackBerry for over a decade.

I understand that you are angry that the BBM launch sucked. The delay sucked, the lack of a viral mechanism sucked, and the lack of BBM Audio and BBM Video on iOS/Android gave the wrong first impression to too many users. I understand that there have been outages, as well... and those suck. But, remember that almost a year passed before BlackBerry was able to get BBM for devices not connected via BIS/BES. Remember people here on CrackBerry crying constantly about their Playbook not being able to use BBM without bridging. BBM was built on an old infrastructure and the technical feat of getting it to work on QNX and then for other OSs was not small or insignificant. Bocking may not have been your favorite, and he was one of Mike L's favorites, but I'd be very surprised if Chen is able to hire someone who understands BBM and its infrastructure as well as Bocking did. That's particularly true given Bocking's hardware-software integration background...

Look, I bet Thor wasn't terminated, either. But, could he just sit around while the board was transferring his authority as CEO to a guy who wouldn't have even made the cut for consideration when Thor was hired... and a guy who was clearly willing to abandon the promise of a BlackBerry that competes in the platform wars? Similarly, Bock went from leading an independent project to answering to John Sims as part of a vision he no longer controlled. I would have quit, too. In fact, everyone who loves BlackBerry should refuse to consider the company under John Chen as BlackBerry, at all. They should just call BlackBerry a company that was formerly a contender for the future of mobile computing alongside iOS/Android/WP8, but will now strive to regain profitability by selling BES upgrades to enterprise. Furthermore, CrackBerry should investigate the connection between Chen and Silver Lake and the ethical issues involved...

I think a lot of people who loved what made BlackBerry great are having trouble swallowing the return to mediocrity that Chen promises, not when there was still a path to competing in the platform wars.

RyanGermann

Oh, that photo is soooo AWKWARD... they look like being at a 'sports game' is pure torture and they're taking the picture because the CMO told them to, not like they actually SAW something they want to take a picture of... SIMULTANEOUSLY. Good riddance Boulben.

GreekboyD

That awkward look is because they are both using phones that they were paid to use. I'm sure they both own an iPhone/Android in "real life" there junior. They know full well that pulling out a BB phone will not get you laid. Look up the word "cock block" in the dictionary and you'll see a pic of an outdated/underpowered slow as molasses BB phone next to it.

Later junior. Time to immerse myself in something you BB fanboys don't have...apps.

DaedalusIcarusHelios

Why would any phone get you laid? I'm sure trolling CrackBerry isn't getting you laid either.

Nicholas Kathrein

Some might think Kevin's Porsche phone might.

GreekboyD

Pussy penetration is directly proportional to market penetration. In other words, you and BB both aren't getting any. On the other hand when I pull out the pussy magnet, aka Note 3, boxes start dripping and my man root leaves devastation in its wake. Carry around a Note 3 and women just yearn for that man root extract. Carry around a BB and your extract ends up on your tissue after you wipe it from your hands.

Later junior.

ibmbc

Wow and how is this post not removed and this guy banned? Come on crackberry step it up.

And as for you Greekboy, much like guys who by sports cars, I think your overcompensating with your brick of a phone

GreekboyD

It's "buy" but in your case I'd hazard a guess that "bi" is more apropos where "you're" concerned.

Later troll.

trwallace

they need new blood in the company. im sure these people have all given great efforts over the years but they need to change or have the company roll over and die. This is to be expected. Get some new fresh ideas in at the top especially where the old guard was. im sure he did a great job well he was at blackberry but its time to take some risks and get some fresh ideas in the company. The days of stand pat are over.

SplatHead

Why did he leave? -- We may never know the truth. Could be bored, better offer, or.. pushed out and agreed to leave as if it was his idea... (Doesn't make either look bad)

Don't mean to be harsh.. but....
Executive Vice President.... I don't know the guy but the EVP's I've dealt with just keep office items from floating away... Occasionally give their opinion and ideas...

Bocking may have wanted one thing and BBRY wanted another..

I will have to say its always good to see / hear someone moving on. My grandfather told me to never work at the same place for more than 5 years, unless you're moving up the ladder. Wisdom can only be gained by doing something new.

Supa_Fly1

WOW!

NOT good news! I'm willing to bet 2 things coincided for his reason to leave.
1) Strong armed choice by Mr. Chen as John Sims, who was brought on board in December, is one of several executives Chen worked with at SAP AG and Sybase Inc.!! Funny how Mr. Sims gets the job (think more cash bonus')
2) Due to the strong-arming, Mr. Bocking looks for a new job, finds one and chooses to leave - with agreement that Mr. Chen will authorize his full severance pay and stock options that have vested over the years are worth it.

I'm not liking this set of news ... any more like this and you'll all see that Mr. Chen is NOT the saviour you all hold him to be but the axe for a complete sale - not what I stated above "Sybase & SAP" !!

BlackberryFan777

Sadly, I believe you are correct about Chen not being a saviour. And, I think there is an outside chance that Chen was brought on by the board simply to enable a sale to Silver Lake. Some good things could come from turnaround efforts aimed at a sale, but I would have liked to see BlackBerry get a CEO who was intent on restoring BlackBerry's standing as a thriving tech company in its own right... and one with a strong claim as a contender in the mobile platform wars. We'll see.

New_Z10

Maybe it's the old job. Software product development and ecosystem. Maybe it's time to pay the piper for many of the prior debacles of which there are many.

Posted via CB10

joshua_sx1

If the company terminated an employee, they have a better option... if the employee resigned, he/she has a better option...

Everyone is destined to leave a company (except only if you are the owner and you are not selling it)... it just only a matter of a "better option"...

Posted via CB10

yvpan1

So sad to hear this news. Thanks Andrew for all your hard work. all the best for your future endeavours and hopefully you'll always support BBM from the other side.

John Kastanes

Predictable ; no mention by pop culture media when BlackBerry hires Indian R and D companies, but is all over it when someone leaving the company.

Investors, do not be fooled by Wall Street marketing blitz.

Z10

rickster2611

Crackberry should invite Mr Geller for a podcast.

Let's see what's this nonsense about BlackBerry really about.

It's like there is a vendetta against BlackBerry by US Carriers.

I don't understand, maybe Mr Geller can enlighten the Crackberry nation.

If he refuses then what I say is true.

Posted via CB10

jd914

Another big player quits. House of Cards is crumbling fast.

jasm817

Hey. Look. Heins was in on bringing the company down with his comments about tablets won't be around in a few years and than later letting out that blackberry was up for sale. Common. Seriously? I even recall part of the break up deal was to have this guy head of BBM and spin it off as a separate company with a separate ticker and all. I don't foget nothing and I know more than you think. Good riddance. We need BBM to be like skype and why has it taken so long. It is all about the mighty dollar and people hold out for the cash.

Posted from a Blackberry Z10

Wendy Reinhart

Stock is up on word that the dead weight was shed.

Pard

The writing was on the wall when he was a no show at CES.

TranceRomance

Well good luck in whatever you do.

Posted via CB10 with my T-Mobile USA  ‎BlackBerry Q10...SON!

ptpete

Kevin, how did BGR scoop Crackberry on this?

canuckbear

What impact will this have on the company and users?

Posted via CB10

christoph77

Great loss, wish you all the best Bocking!

C0038297E Quote of the Day (BBM Channel)

jic999

Maybe Chris Umi went over, since he is talking with the BBM Team and he probably said " we need to focus on ease and performance commerce.....somebody has to go here ". lol

Posted via CB10

tupi222

The best lucky for him... but may be the bbm service will work better and the updates will be faster than before (bbm 2.0); remain all of you how was the bbm start for android and ios, it was very bad with many problems,in beta version with many buges... and now still thare are people unistalling the app at ios becouse problems... the latest update with the feature "find friends" doesn´t work fine, it doesnt find bbm pins...

John Kastanes

Pathetic media is making this out to be bad. No man is an island onto himself.

Good riddance!

Z10

Supa_Fly1

Can't wait, and about another million, are ready to say the same when you're canned!

Maybe do your research and see how a change like this has a major impact beyond just re -rganising of resources.

Man the level of ignorance!

BlackBerry Q10  & Full Metal CB10!

tgtallinn

Whilst he may have talent and past successes he may have lost a lot of energy in past battles that may haunt him. current state of BBM isnt very exciting as a cross platform (no video, no audio, not talking of multiparty video) and even inside blackberry ecosystem it has issues (read all complaint about where is the video icon). Not sure a new VP can do better, but clearly the strategy should acquiring companies such as viber, tango to grow the user base and acquire some talents who must have moved away from Blackberry. and not sure they will have budget that for. it only requires 30 good engineers to make such a system, but bureaucracy can stuck much more just to roll over stupid release procedures and ineffective qa.
profitability is also a challenge... skype barely was (wouldn't have been baught else, but lync is much more else it would have disappeared from msft) nor are all other solutions. So it looks like business application has more edge than consumer one. But you still need consumers if you want to address b2c.

Graheem

I wonder what phone Thorsten uses now.

adonesc

"I can confirm that Andrew Bocking, EVP, BBM has made the decision to leave BlackBerry. We thank him for his years of leadership and contribution."

Read: "Pack your shit, and get the fuck out of here! Middle finger and a kick in the nutsack courtesy of...John Chen."

Bocking was a Thorsten Heins Ketchup acolyte and a reminder of a time that was supposed to mark a new beginning for BlackBerry it instead ended up being a big fat nothing...

Bocking was going to get clipped and I guess he knew it.

Chen is gangsta that way!

Cartman says: Screw you guys I'm going home!

Nana Yeboah

Do you want daily life tips and how to simplify difficult tasks?? Subscribe to C0014290Eٓ.

Posted via CB10

tripple dunk

How are you executive vice president for just BBM. Seems like a waste.

White Z10