Experiencing the BlackBerry Experience: New York

BlackBerry Experience New york
By Team CrackBerry on 10 Apr 2014 05:16 pm EDT
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My first assignment for CrackBerry entailed meeting BlackBerry CEO John Chen, President of Global Enterprise Services, John Sims, and the VP of Global Alliances and Ecosystems, Marty Mallick. Suffice it to say I wasn't expecting to meet these gentlemen let alone be speaking with them.

But before I continue, let me start at the beginning.

BlackBerry Experience: New York was held in the beautiful and historic Gotham Hall at the heart of the city. Just walking there from the subway station one can see Madison Square Garden, the Empire State Building, and Herald Square in the midst of the busy streets and bustling businesses.

I was pleasantly greeted at the entrance hall and the check-in went smooth as hot butter. Without missing a beat Kim Geiger, one of BlackBerry's Public Relations Managers, personally escorted me around, detailing everything that was to take place that day. I will admit that I smiled at the sight of the many delicious dishes and beverages being provided and thought to myself that BlackBerry certainly knew how to treat their guests.

Before things got underway, I spent some time browsing the booths featured by BlackBerry partners, inspecting BlackBerry devices (not rumored) and reviewing new enterprise/business Apps. There were a lot of interesting things to take in.

The BlackBerry Experience is about professional mobility focusing on defining Enterprise solutions for today and tomorrow. Attendees gained insight into BlackBerry's renewed focus on enterprise, how BlackBerry is redefining productivity, how the company is enabling greater communication and collaboration in order to drive the transformation of mobile computing while covering strategies that support BYOD, COPE and even Corporate Liable.

What BlackBerry managed to establish consistently throughout the day was three things: A recommitment to both former and current customers, expanding their value as a comprehensive and trusted mobility provider, and leveraging their rich ecosystem with partner applications.

BlackBerry's strategic vision will be to deliver solutions that go beyond the device. It will enable workers to maximize productivity by accessing any content, from anywhere, and at any time.

Later in the event the press and media met in a private room with the President of Global Enterprise Services, John Sims. We were able to ask all the tough questions that were on our minds regarding the future of BlackBerry's handset business, BBM desktop, tablets, BBM Money, BlackBerry Retail stores and many other BlackBerry related topics. Things got interesting when John Chen walked into the room. Exciting? Definitely.

It was a full house at Gotham Hall, the energy in the room akin to that of a sleeping giant that had been awaken. BlackBerry Experience: New York was successful at assuring enthusiasts, businesses, and enterprises that the future of BlackBerry is not only secure but also flourishing.

Are you curious to know what was asked and said in the Pressroom with CEO John Chen and John Sims? If so, stay tuned for an exciting CrackBerry podcast!

Article Written by Jubei Raziel

Edited by Sharon Mamolo

* Photo taken with my BlackBerry Q10

Reader comments

Experiencing the BlackBerry Experience: New York

136 Comments

I attended the Blackberry Experience today. There were several points that I did not see at the event.

> There was no discussion of BBM or Blackberry Enterprise BBM for PC’s.
> There was limited discussion of new handsets. The demo staff were well versed in the handsets in the current line. There was no mention of the $200 handsets. The stage presentation on handsets was limited to two minutes.
> It was apparent that there is no effort to induce the Enterprise users to integrate the Blackberry handsets into their systems.
> There was no mention of Windows handset integration into the Blackberry Enterprise servers. Except Windows 8 ‘phone’ integration.
> There appears to be an open pricing system. The Blackberry Enterprise offering is $19/per year, per instrument, and about twice that for ‘perpetual’ (service contact is extra). The pricing was shown as MSRP, meaning that the price is negotiable. If a company buys BES10, then will they have to pay again for the soon to come BES12. If not, ‘perpetual’ contract means there is a dead end to future income, beyond the second year.
> There is no ‘value-added’ for a company to purchase Blackberry handsets.
> There was no talk of ‘tablets’, even Apple or Samsung product integration.
> There was no mention of World ‘emerging markets’, rather only large corporations as main customers.

Thru QNX, the Blackberry target is clearly to go after the fast growing integration of devices other than handsets: autos, appliances, handheld devices, etc.
For servers, they want to support large scale Enterprise communication and operation.

I fully understand that while this was an Enterprise meeting, there was no discussion of support and products for the non-enterprise consumer.

There was also no discussion on how the Blackberry company would improve the widely help opinion, supported by the press, that the company is ready to rollover. I believe this is called 'marketing' and 'public relations'.

(Maybe I was in a different room. While the Gotham Hall is a vast space, only half the seats were taken, and, the staff removed many seats during the break.)
That being said, they served a great breakfast and lunch!

What was said on the floor was for the IT folk in attendance. I know not what the press was told. Different?

Jubei, I hope that the press was given enough positive information so that they would stop saying what bad shape Blackberry is in. Have you read the NY Times business section about Blackberry in the past year? If you take it literally, Blackberry is on life support.

I was there as well. They also didn't not mention Tablet integration.

No mention of a more robust app ecosystem for types of businesses that need to do much more than send emails and edit word docs.

And as I walked around speaking with people after the event. I ran into the SVP of Communications for CitiBank. He said they've been slowly migrating to GOOD because he's extremely unhappy with the way BB provides financials to him.

He stated that he manages 46k mobile devices for the bank and BB needs to "catch up" quickly.

I understand what is happening at Citi. My customer rep at Citi has a BB on his desk for bank use, and, he has an older iPhone for his personal use. All that BB said at this meeting, as far as having both business and personal divisions on the same phone, seems to be for naught. At least for some at Citi that is. Maybe BB should give Citi some OS10 phones at a favorable price so that the bank can dual implement corp/personal use. For sure, Citi would have to upgrade to BES10 and BES12 in favor of BES5.

I left Gotham Hall under the impression that they will provide handsets to businesses that specifically ask for them only.

The U. S. consumer market has become a non-entity.

They spoke about managing iOS and Android than BB10.

From what I heard at the meeting, you are absolutely correct: Blackberry is supporting iOS and Android at neglect of their own handsets. Really, they would provide Blackberry phones to corporates that ask for them? Maybe the governments worldwide would request them, but not the privates.

That's the risk one must take to be first. It doesn't come easy. Not even for our dear Kevin. LOL.

 CB10 

Great read and well written. Thanks for sharing your experience and looking forward to the podcast for further insights into BlackBerry strategy and responses to hard pressed questions from the press...

Posted via BlackBerry10 | OS v2.1‎.XXXX

Great post, waiting for the podcast.

Life is simple, we are the ones that complicate it !!! Z10STL100-3/10.2.1.2947/2235 on AT&T

Sounds like a cool event! Looking forward to reading more of your articles; although this one was a little hard to take seriously when I noticed you weren't wearing a shirt in your display pic ;) ... maybe a more "professional" one would fit better.

Great to see you joining our CB community. I hope you will make a few awesome movies highlighting the hardware and software features including some apps of, say the Z30.

Check the forum, e.g. Miracast issues, USB OTG issues,etc. Each one should warrant your movie effort. Poll the community for priorities.

Anyhow, welcome on board and thanks for your first insight.

Posted via the amazing Z30

Nice one Blaze.

Thought those suits were meant for easily changing to the BatSuit.

Now if Batman used a BlackBerry in the next Batman Superman movie, I'll be convinced that Chen is.....

The Batman

Posted from my awesome HUB enabled  Z10

Jubei that was an outstanding first post! I am looking forward to hearing from you often. Welcome!

PROUD to be the 1%! Z10 on T-Mobile, 32 GB PlayBook - Posted via CrackBerry 10

Excellent job on your first post. Small things like describing what you saw on your walk to the venue shows you have good writing technique. Looking forward to the podcast.

Awesome news. I am certainly looking forward to this podcast in the big City. Btw this was a nice pic with the Q10.

Man United 4life!!!!

Thanks Jubei. Well done for your first post. I look forward to the podcast and future pieces from you.

Posted via CB10 on Q10

Congrats on an excellent first post!

The event looked like an excellent way to engage with business and enterprise users, and I hope it has the desired effect.

I'm still a little concerned that BlackBerry don't seem to have any marketing strategy to reach out to regular consumers and get the enthusiasts excited again.

Kevin, are Crackberry still considering plugging this gap with some kind of fan event?

Posted via CB10

As a Consumer, I'm not very excited about the direction of the company. I don't work for a fortune 500 company; I work for myself and I've been using the devices since 2004. I recently upgraded from a 9700 to a Q10 and finally decided on the Z10.
He has pretty much given up on the U.S. consumer market and instead - and rightfully so - has "re-focused" on Enterprise. That's where they started and from their success, it was able to "bleed" into the consumer "biz-centric" market.
To me, BBM is what attracted the non "biz-centric" market (consumer base) until Apple and Google rocked the consumer base's world. We in the "biz-centric" market were not impressed and stood by our BBs relishing the productivity of the device, mainly communication via emails amongst other things.
So, I guess the only thing to hope for is that they become successful again in Enterprise and that those products "bleed" back down to the "biz-centric" consumer market.
I'm OK with it all as long as OS 10 continues to be supported and I can continually update my Z10. I really want BB to succeed because Android, iOS and WP appear to be platforms that enable mass marketing to users with the sole intent of having another vehicle to pick the pockets of "Sheeple."

I was at the event and live blogged it. One of the things they kept reiterating was that they've come to realize that individuals are productive in ways other than just emails.

Seems like they want to catch up with the world is doing with their mobile devices other than emails.

Doctors, Architects, Engineers, etc... All using their devices to get things done.

I want to know what to think from purely a consumer side??
Also, keep the podcast short, don't have hours to listen.

Posted via CB10

Great post Jubei, and what a awesome first assignment.
Looking forward to more in the future.
Good to see Chen out there talking with people.

Posted via CB10

Welcome to the CB blogs. It's refreshing to read your post. Good opening and descriptive. I feel like I was walking down the street of New York.

 CB10 

Awesomeness. Thank you for the imagery.

So happy the event was a success and looking forward to the podcast with the rundown.

Aka S.Jizzle Z30STA100-5/10.2.1.2141

What a great first assignment to have. Very well written I might add. Welcome and have fun in New York.

Powered by BlackBerry

Congratulations on your first post! Your display pic is a lil distracting tho lol. Looking forward to more post from you

Posted via CB10

Congratulations on your first post. Looking forward to the podcast and more from you in future posts.

Posted via CB10

Wow, that's a nice piece of first post!
Nice writing and infos, welcome aboard! Now let's ear you in the podcast !!

Posted via CB10

My experience with the q10 especially since 10.2 with a few minor issues has been better than I could have ever imagined. To me it's the perfect communication device

Posted via CB10

That was a very intriguing, interesting article that grabbed my attention. Looking forward to your work. You just got me so excited about BlackBerry again. Welcome aboard starship BlackBerry. I feel team BlackBerry just got its second wind. Here we go folks enjoy. The ride.

Posted via CB10

Can't stop thinking about BlackBerry and this article. PLEASE PLEASE POST REPOST IM THINKING YOUR WRITING NEEDS TO GET OUT TO AS MANY PEOPLE AS POSSIBLE.
OK team BlackBerry. How do we do this? Let's make a plan for what is it we can do as a team.

Posted via CB10

Fantastic article! Great to have your talents on Crackberry. Awesome engagement in the comments...

Looking forward to the podcast.

Posted via CB10

When harley - Davidson was hurting in the 80 s 90s they redesigned there engine got a partner and built the v-rod. Not for the harley guy but a new generation. One of the things they did was a infomercial. 2 to 3 hours long. Telling the harley story . The truth. BlackBerry needs a infomercial ! The company is a pioneer and the most innovative technology companies there is. Not to even mention secure. What do you guys think?

Posted via CB10

Excellent Jubei! I felt I was reading through a Great Adventure. You have Talent!!! Keep on Rocking Jubei! Loving IT!

CrackBerry Team y'all have some talent and this article is a perfect example that going forward we have a lot to look forward to!

 BlackBerry Q10 

Very well written article. Thanks for making us all feel like we were at the event. Congrats on making it official as a CB writer. You seem to be a great asset to the team.

Posted via CB10

Okay, I'm gonna admit, your first post wasn't news, it's on worthy of that. In fact your post was great! It was a story, I actually felt as if I were the way you started off.

I have to say I look forward to more post from you, great job and Kevin, great decision to bring this guy on board.

Posted via CB10

Excellent first article, and looking forward to more. Like your narrative style. Good grief! That photo looks like it was held in the Great Cathedral of BlackBerry!

Posted via CB from "Z" best

Nicely written - congratulations and welcome to the Crackberry team, Jubei! I look forward to more of your input.

Typed on my Q10, SQN100-2, OS 10.2.1.2234

Welcome to the team. You are now in the company of BlackBerry soldiers that define a brand which is unique. As the orc of Tolkien expressed before the battle, " We face certain death, with a slim chance of success, what are we waiting for....".

Posted via CB10

Amazing! Thank you for writing this article and all others! I love reading these, makes me feel more and more comfortable owning and using my Blackberry Q10. Looking forward to the next article related to the Experience! Long Live Blackberry!

Posted via CB10

Well written article, great job!

If I could speak to Mr. Chen, I would encourage they build a creative division,and aim towards a niche market. Division would be made up of young artists which encourage creativity in graphic design and uniqueness. The same choice Apple made in the early 2000s.

Make BlackBerry feel wanted again!

Posted via CB10

Great 1st post, with a cliffhanger ending at that.

I'm shocked he didn't add "Same Bat Time, Same Bat Channel!", we were in Gotham Hall After all.

Posted via CB10

FYI

If you want some more information about what went on and most likely what the podcast will highlight, head over to n4bb, lots of good stories there
Not sure why CB makes us wait so long when other sites have already written about it.

Anyway great article, good going:)

Classifieds Canada and GeoYeo App all the way!!!

I'm new to the BB experience. Enjoying it. So far. I did read an interesting article about the Foxconn agreement. They agreed to take a percent of revenue from handset production VS the previous agreement. BB had to prepay for parts before production would start. That had to burn some serious cash. Hopefully this will speed introductionm and help save capital. Just a thought.

Great blog post jumei! That was awesome and it was a grrreat insight too!

Posted via CrackBerry 10 (CB10) application using my BlackBerry Q10.