An inside look at BlackBerry - from the 'iPhone killer' to SMS 2.0

By Adam Zeis on 28 Sep 2013 08:44 am EDT
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The Globe and Mail has posted an extensive report that takes a look deep inside BlackBerry and examines much of the direction of the company for the last few years. While all the talk lately is about the sale of BlackBerry, lackluster Z10 numbers and cross-platform BBM, the report looks at much more of what went on inside the company. Most notably it looks at some of the bigger decisions for BlackBerry including being commissioned by Verizon to create an "iPhone killer", Jim Balsillie severing ties with the company and Mike Lazaridis' opposition to BlackBerry 10 phones.

The report explains how the BlackBerry Storm - one of the biggest and most complex projects for BlackBerry - wasn't really ready when it hit the market, even though it was already months behind. Verizon had hoped to team with BlackBerry to combat the iPhone but that obviously never panned out and Big Red then turned to the likes of Google and Motorola instead.

“My reason for leaving the RIM board in March, 2012, was due to the company’s decision to cancel the BBM cross-platform strategy"Jim Balsillie

It goes on to explain how Jim Balsillie ultimately chose to leave the company over issues with his long-term plan for BBM and going cross platform (SMS 2.0 as he called it). Both Lazaridis and Throsten Heins were opposed to the idea however and it was killed off soon after Heins became CEO in early 2012. Interestingly enough one of the bright spots for BlackBerry is currently cross-platform BBM, though that too is having issues once again. 

Of course they are plenty of notes about the launch of BlackBerry 10 and the Z10 as well. Mike L never really wanted BB10 and strongly argued against any devices without a physical keyboard. Surprisingly he too was against Jim Balsillie's plan to take BBM cross-platform as well.

"The keyboard is one of the reasons they buy BlackBerrys."Mike Lazaridis

The acquisition of QNX and the release of the BlackBerry PlayBook are touched on as well, with many employees questioning whether or not the tablet should have ever been released in the first place. 

There's plenty more to be had in the full story and while it's quite long, it makes for a great read. It gives a good look at what's gone on for BlackBerry over the last few years and while most of it isn't news, some of it lends a bit more insight. It's sad to hear some of what went on inside the company but as things move along it all starts to make sense.

Check out the full article from the Globe and Mail here and be sure to hit up the comments with your thoughts.

Topics: BBRY Editorial

Reader comments

An inside look at BlackBerry - from the 'iPhone killer' to SMS 2.0

356 Comments

I'm amazed at the number (and potential scale!) of opportunities they failed to take advantage of. The Storm, SMS 2.0 (huge), and China (massive)...

Also interesting to see how many discussions within CrackBerry mirrored their (very significant) internal feuds.

+1 to all of us at CB!

Posted via CB10

Totally agree!!! So many missed opportunities they had. If Mr Balsillie was able to get carriers to offer BBM as part of a standard talk and text plan for entry level smartphone s that could have helped them so much.

The only thing Mr Lazaridis did for BlackBerry s future was acquire the QNX software company. Other than that he definitely played a huge role in BlackBerry going down afterwards.

Now that we are finally getting a clearer picture of what happened behind closed doors within the company the fall of BlackBerry is starting to make sense. Sad, absolutely. I am a huge BB10 fan, and believe in Heins. It has been a hard road. And who knows SMS 2.0 could have died early, especially with the market for unlimited messaging in the US. That would have been a lot of wasted resources for something that wouldn't show profit quickly enough. However, if BB10 lived up to expectations then it would have been almost instant revenue. Being at the top isn't easy, and neither is the come back. I have high hopes for BlackBerry, either way.

Posted via Microwave Oven

Yes this detailed inside story provided many reasons to why where BlackBerry is right now.

- products rushed to market (storm & PB)
- Product delays (BB 10 at least a year late to 2 yrs)

- very poor execution with management ( so much time wasted in figuring things out and working on getting them done)

It's funny that two problems two sides of the same coin. When you cannot develop quality products quickly enough you have to release them too early or too late.

Posted via CB10

I really dont understand the support for Heins after reading this article. He was on the wrong side of pretty much every decision. Just a couple of examples of the top of my head:

1) Opposing SMS 2.0
2) Opposing releasing the Q10 before the Z10

While neither of these decisions may have made BB the next big thing, they were at least good strategic decisions. I get the feeling that Heins was constantly choosing the path of least resistance, instead of making a tough decision and sweating it out.

Surprised there aren't 1000 comments already! This is almost full disclosure of BlackBerry's downfall. Although most of the article is the poor decisions made by BlackBerry, it's one of the most informative I have seen. Great to see the time lines and also shed some light on what the f*** happened to our beloved BlackBerry. I hope the future is bright and Prem moves BlackBerry in the right direction, and continues to build mobile devices! The truth is BB10 is truly one of the best platforms available, and the devices are truly amazing. Too bad a lot have never experienced it.

Posted via BlackBerry Z10

A smaller, more nible, agile and private BlackBerry under new leadership should be able to more easily navigate these stormy technological waters... It's sad and I am a huge fan of BB, but for the sake of the company and our hard working folks in Waterloo, I'm hoping this will allow BB to get back down to a core profitable business that can bring wealth and prosperity to the region, and new opportunities down the road.

Not really. He wanted to charge for BBM.

Who would have paid when there are free alternatives? Not me that's for sure.

I would have gladly forked over a couple bucks a year for cross platform BBM. Say they charged $2 yearly for BBM, as opposed to WhatsApp's $1. Then say 400k people used it. That's $800k yearly revenue from BBM alone.

Nah, he wanted to reduce carrier BIS service fees in exchange for a low carrier BBM service fee. Basically, he wanted to lower the cost per subscriber but broaden the subscriber base (by bringing in Android and iOS). The point was to offer it with cheap talk, SMS and BBM-only plans so people didn't have to pay for a full data plan. Without paying for a data plan, all the "free" alternatives don't work.

Everyone I know pays for a data plan.

So effectively messaging is free.

There may be some parts of the earth where data plans aren't common, but BIS works perfectly fine as a service in those countries.

If they'd charged for BBM the product would have failed and consumers would still have flocked to cheap Android devices.

The time is now right to open up BBM and generate revenue using add on services. It wasn't then.

This initially played out several years ago, at a time when not 'everyone' had a data plan (definitely not the case outside of North America)... in made developing regions you could get a Blackberry with voice, sms, email and BBM only for cheaper than any other web capable device and a full data plan. Of course now it seems superfluous, since, as you said... data plans are relatively accesible.

And at that time 2G phones were the norm (still are some places). But there was still competition. And if they had charged for BBM it wouldn't have been long before they would have lost that opportunity also.

They're launching cross platform BBM at the right time. Within months they'll have video and audio as well as BBM Channels. They'll not only compete with Kik and Whatsapp etc, but with Facebook, Twitter and Tumbr.

And just this week they demo'd BBM on the desktop.

Heins has transformed the company and will succeed if given a chance.

You're wrong. As late as 2011 I was working for GLENTEL in Toronto selling phones. The number of people that wanted the "social $40" type plans (voice + social networking + bbm) would astound you. Almost every parent I sold a phone to would be getting that for their kids in high school. FYI.

BBM would have been part of your data plan just like SMS so there wouldn't be an extra fee per se. It would have been part of your data plan.

When BBM was popular (a couple of years ago) people would have paid for it.

Heck, when Whatsapp released, it wasn't free, even though it was a new network and had no established base.

You really think people would be less willing to pay to enter the massive (and much better initially) BBM network than they would for the fledgling Whatsapp?

I know, this article greatly increased my opinion of him. I always thought that his cross-platform BBM idea was good, but didn't know about his other ones. I know there was/is a CB member here from China who has complained about BlackBerry pulling out of China. I always assumed it was due to some sort of censorship dispute. Turns out they just walked away from a massive market that Apple is doing everything they can to get into. :(

Posted via CB10

"Turns out they just walked away from a massive market that Apple is doing everything they can to get into"

You really think it's that simple?

Didn't your mother tell you not to believe everything you read. The Globe article is one sided and inaccurate.

They could have simply figured a joint venture with a communist country would make their US corporate clients uneasy. All about not rocking the boat.

He had the right idea for sure. He wanted to turn Blackberry into more of a services company. Wanted to offer BBM on top of cloud services through Carriers. This could've worked.

Play Starcraft? Join our Channel: C001242DE

Uh so going after a hockey team was a good idea?
He is just at fault. All of their bad decisions compounded their problems. I hope Prem can make things right for BlackBerry. Hopefully he will keep BlackBerry together. Great read.

Posted via CB10

Just Google it. If it's true then all non-Apple users would have been subsidizing iPhones and Apple which is ridiculous.

Posted via CB10

It's true. And you're right. Everyone has been subsidizing Apple.

AT&T and Verizon (among others) were left with lots of iPhone 5's. They misread the smartphone market, which has matured over the past year.

When BB10 was launched Verizon couldn't promote the devices because of the Apple penalties. Whether that's true now remains to be seen.

When you look at the performance of BlackBerry, you must first check the relationship with carriers. The Globe article makes passing reference to carriers but completely fails to accord the weight needed.

Carriers control the smartphone market. Apple and Samsung have been able to use their size to strong arm the occasional deal, but ultimately they will pay the price. No one likes being backed into a corner.

And this is exactly why BB10 is failing outside the US too. Because global carrier Verizon can't promote them.

Oh wait...

The link worked for me. Thus might be the main reason that Sprint didn't pick up the Z10 as well. They had to meet that sell through. Couldn't risk needing to pay Apple any more $. They have enough problems as is.

I feel the same way, although, I think the China thing would have been hard because China is very intrusive into the lives of it's citizens. Think "Prison State" mentality; everything is monitored. Which is way social services like Twitter/Facebook are blocked in China. I could easily see the Chinese Government trying to get access to BBM and then if they refuse, get kicked out of the country. That would be very embarrassing for BlackBerry...

And you think the US/UK isn't intrusive to the lives of their own citizens?

Adding and abetting a government is unlikely a reason why any corporation would stop doing business. Look at Apple for their China specific features, for one.

If you want to stop a corporation from doing something, hurt their pocketbook...

I think if they had a better China strategy they would be the ones selling 9 million phones in three weeks. Instead we have the current state of affairs. BlackBerry are not living up to their own potential and I think that is what makes us on Crack berry so frustrated.

I don't care what the board, share holders or the CEO want. Take care of your customers first and then the rest will take care of itself.

Posted via CB10

I agree with you. It's sad but the new reality is what it is.

This is a great. Great article.

Stuck with this BlackBerry Z10 and a 2-year contract.

The Z10 is the best phone they've made next to the 9700, period. And it's a shame so few no how good it is.

Posted via CB10

Yep, great article - no disrespect for CrackBerry but this is real journalism.

Reading CrackBerry posts that pretty much always painted Jim Balsillie like a @sshole, I have formed a really wrong opinion about the guy. I think the guy could have saved the company if he was the CEO not a co-CEO.

Hardware innovation sequence: Storm, failed. Playbook, failed, Z10, failed. Now they better shut hardware down ASAP and start to pray for a miracle.

I think many of us formed the wrong opinion of the guy... somewhere out there, in an alternate timeline, Jimmy B probably saves RIM.

:)

In BBM, when it "shows what I am listening to", when it's a song that is in my "Library", it should show up as a link on my contacts device to purchase song from BBBWorld (if available in bbworld), launch player to listen(if same exists in contacts Library), or request transfer thru BBM

Z10/CB10

Extremely depressing. Blackberry was torn between corporate and consumer customers and ended up satisfying neither. I wish them the best of luck serving their corporate customers. I think they can be a success. They just have to be more nimble and smaller in the future.

BlackBerry's story gets more interesting by the day. I hope more than BBM and QNX machine-to-machine communications survive.

The way I see it, they all had good strategies, but because they were so divided, they didn't do anything right. It took them forever to execute on one thing, but did not follow a clear cut strategy.

Lasaridis=> Wanted to focus on Enterprise. Understood that they needed a better OS, but wanted to build a keyboard device only. Wanted to launch BB10 first with keyboard device.

Balsillie=> Saw the smartphone market as commoditised, so wanted to focus on services and cross-platform BBM. He also wanted Blackberry to start offering other services through Carriers, like cloud storage.

Thorsten=> Saw BB10 as the only way to save Blackberry and put all his focus on the launch. Cancelled all other projects and focused on delivering BB10. Wanted to launch with a touch screen first because he thought keyboard phones were dead and there was money to be made selling a superior touchscreen OS.

I think if any one of them was able to execute on their strategy from the beginning, BlackBerry would be in a better situation.

Play Starcraft? Join our Channel: C001242DE

Good summary. If they had simply executed instead of dithering they'd - likely - be in a much better position now.

still the same issue with BlackBerry, as with Microsoft Mobile.
It is not enough to have good ideas, or differentiating features. What matters in the end is Execution.

2 years later( if BlackBerry still exists) , Heins will start to look like he was the best CEO.

Posted from my Last ever BB

I recently decided to boycott The Globe and Mail since they continuously write Berry Bashing articles and are part of the problem. I'm a Canadian living in the US and I think The Globe is a disgrace to the country.

Posted via CB10

you can call it bashing but pretty much everything in the article was factual. Sadly except for the line about them having launched cross-platform BBM last weekend...

Posted via CB10

You are totally right ! Noticed that for a long while and I stopped reading it. Only reading the title of their BB related articles and you can see the hate. No doubt BlackBerry is in trouble but the press played a big role. While I can understand US press to "fight" for Apple and Google, it is shameful for a Canadian press outlet to constantly attack a Canadian company that is not even their competition. Disgrace is too soft of a word .
I hope BlackBerry will recover, I will buy their products as long as they will offer them. I'm sure like me, there are enough people to keep them in business.

Very fair. It also explains Chris Umi's headline about how "it's good that all these people were layed off" or whatever. The company was in serious need of restructuring.

--Q10 and Canadian all the way! Posted via CB10 on 10.2.0.1443. #IChooseBlackBerry10

In Australia, there's something called the 'Tall Poppy Syndrome', where successful people or companies are seen as suspect and too big for their britches, and every attempt is made to cut them down a notch or two. That is, cut down the tallest poppies in the field so that everyone is at the same level and no one is better than anyone else.

It's a social problem common to a lot of Commonwealth countries, especially Australia, Canada, New Zealand and Great Britain. It's totally opposite to the way the US operates, where success is celebrated at every turn.

It must be remembered that the Globe and Mail is a very socialist, left-leaning newspaper, so it's not surprising that it would be infected with the virus that causes the 'Tall Poppy Syndrome'.

Blackberry is a good company and it makes good products. It's just having some serious internal problems right now that need to be fixed.

In Canada that's a very strong phenomenon as well to insult or cut down those who gain success instead of celebrating them, but it's easier to become rich and famous in the US for us, so we also usually add 'traitor' to the list.

Posted via CB10

Success is not celebrated in the US, just look at all the entitled people with their hands out looking for something for free, complaining about what the "1%" have and don't deserve, and what they don't have but somehow do deserve for free

Funny. Many people feel the Globe and Mail is a right wing conservative newspaper. I don't think it's either.

I find the CBC no better either... and even worse my tax dollars support the bashing so I can't boycott (

Posted via CB10

Yep totally agree. Their technology writer Omar has been quite negative the past month. Can't find anything positive to say. I did find this recent article pretty balanced and interesting. Mike L was right. They should have come out with the Q10 first. Interesting that the marketing CEO thought that would have been a mistake.

Really? Maybe because there had been zero positive news the past month. Do you expect the writer to just make things up to portray a trend that the sky isn't falling!?

Posted via CB10

I agree with you 100%, I would take anything written by the government and mail with a grain of salt. They only write whatever they feel will sell, very rarely is anything they write factual, it will be a happy day for me when the globe and Mail go under which I'm sure won't be to far down the road.

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How can one company make so many wrong decisions? It's incredible. Even if you flip a coin you're right half the time.

Thorsten should never have taken the reigns based on his vision for the company. What a mess he has turned out to be.

It's a damn shame.

Posted via CB10

The REAL Monumental Clusterfkuc is F.Boulben, the 'titular' CMO.
I think it's apparent that ALL of what he's done for the Brand, the launch and the turnaround speaks for itself:

... 'nuff said.

THAT's my 2 cents from a penny-less country.
Cheers & Keep Moving!

why, "yes, ... yes it is."
Just do yourself a favo(u)r: DON'T go around associating yourself with "le monsieur Monumental Clusterfkuc" ...

BTW, no personal foul intended here!

THAT's my 2 cents from a penny-less country.
Cheers & Keep Moving!

I agree 110%.. while marketing for BB10 has been better (I don't ever remember seeing commercials for BBOS devices...and If there were commercials, they were few and far between)...unfortunately, better isn't good enough. BBRY taking that almost a billion dollar writedown (I realize is just accounting treatment) would have better served investing half of that in more marketing (ie invest a dollar, save 2).

Posted via CB10

don't get me started on the - as I said "Monumental Clusterfkuc" that was - and 'is' BlackBerry's - self-proclaimed Marketing.

From the ridiculous "luminscent bicycles' to the "Mexicans of East-LA," the "über-arrogant 1000 eMails a day bee-yatch" and the "tools-not-toys DJ-twins" ... NOTHING GOOD has ever come out of RIM/BBRY in terms of Marketing. E V E R!!!

And DO NOT confuse the utter CR@P that's been 'seen' for BB10 of-late with effective Marketing that conveys a Compelling Message to an identified and desired Target Customer Set.
The Pre-Launch 'activity & visibility,' the Superbowl disaster, the über-quiet Launch & in-store visibility, the lack of Carrier and Retail support, and - most disppointing - Alicia Keys as the "Spokesperson" ... OMFD, what an EPIC CLUSTERFKUC of a failure, ALL perpetrated by Monsieur Boulben, from whom no-one has heard so much as a moo, a whisper, a hiccup or even a fart. Not so much as a Media Release FROM him, far as I've seen.

The AMOUNT of money one spends on ANYTHING - least of all Marketing - does NOT correlate with Quality, Reach or Effectiveness. They needed not spend 100s of Millions on the shitty campaigns they've run but, instead, get someone truly creative. Not a bunch of stuffy MBAs and Business Managers trying to look creative. And busy.

I wrote TH a lengthy application letter (cc'd their HR) in Jan. 2012 (right after he assumed "the position") outlining EXACTLY what they needed to do and that I'd be available immediately (still am) and never heard SQUAT back. Not even a gratuitous F.O. letter.
They did PRECISELY the opposite - hired a guy with a meaty resume and LOTS of experience, but the creativity and people skills of a fence-post - AND we all know how THAT worked out so far.

What they WOULD have been better served by is hiring ME and gettin' it done RIGHT for a fraction of what they spent. THEN we'd still have at least a moderately suceessful product "for now" until the next wave gets developed, without the need to abandon ship.

The reason I sound bitter (and as a shareholder, resident of Waterloo and friend of the coworkers who will ALL lose their jobs ... I AM, and Irate at that) is because it's yet another prime example of a bunch of egomaniacal know-it-alls relying on a bunch of "HR - caugh - professionals" who ONLY use keyword scanners and wrongly predefined criteria to complete their tasks - instead of actually and properly DOING their jobs.
No-one's going to take a chance on the qualities they need, but is plenty content to sink the ship with the sure guy who has none of them.

Ultimately though, as it does for the LACK of credible Marketing, the responsibility rests on the shoulders of the TOP Decision-Makers. TH may be a good Manager and Designer of stuff, but a Visionary and Creative genius he is (99.9% sure probably) NOT.
And Monsieur Boulben, ... "my" most burning desire is to see the Media Release on Monday that he's left the company. Last week.
ALL I can say is: "c'est la temps pour retourner a la France - SANS "bonus" ou "indemnité de départ;" seulement l'honte d'incompétence et d'échec!!!" and "Don't let the door hit you on the way out!" ... Imbicile!

THAT's my 2 cents from a penny-less country.
Cheers & Keep Moving!

let me think about it ... got a big project to complete for a client by Tuesday, so I won't take much time to do it before then.
Thanks for understanding.

I agree, how does a company make that many wrong decisions? As for Thorston Heins.... it didn't take him very long to finish off BlackBerry did it? He needs to be shown the door.

If you flip a coin you're statistically right half of the time, but that doesnt not mean that you cant be wrong 10 times in a row.

And it's not like there are only two options. There might be 5000 wrong decisions to make, and only one good one.

--Q10 and Canadian all the way! Posted via CB10 on 10.2.0.1443. #IChooseBlackBerry10

Untrue. The flip each time is independent of each other flip. So, getting tails on the first flip doesn't effect the second (or subsequent) flips at all. Thinking like you so is known as "The Gamblers Fallacy " and it's a big driver behind why problem gamblers end up loosing so much.

Posted via CB10 using my Zed Ten

Sorry Blue,

The odds are 50/50 every time. The coin has no memory. The 50/50 will eventually level out if you have enough tosses, but it could take thousands.

"make so many wrong decisions"

They didn't. They just made one or two enormously bad decisions.

Thorsten Heins is turning an oil tanker around and has only been in charge for 18 months. He needs longer to make a difference but has the experience and smarts necessary to deliver.

He has transformed BlackBerrys public face into a humble, open organization that listens to its partners. (Especially developers). They'll do ok if he's given the time to complete his work.

Sorry br14! If you read the article, Mr. Ketchup man (aka Mr. Heins) was part of the problem in the past and still is today! BBRY needs to get rid of anything and anyone that was related to the past problems except the employees that knew the old BBOS so they can work with QNX at integrating the missing pieces.

Agreed, however they can turn it around and refocus. Many companies have done it. I believe BlackBerry can. Let's see how this turns out.

Posted via CB10

Yes, i believed on that one too.. even though everyday i'm reading a lot of bad write-ups on Blackberry, still this is the great phone for me, i hope somebody will step up and put Blackberry back on the Game!
and hope this time, they will show to their valued clients some love.. i mean REAL LOVE :)

When a business doesn't have a single leader it falters. When Steve jobs was pushed out this happened. No single leader, no straightforward ideas, no single captain of the ship. When hobs returned, he cracked the whip and look at what happened. When competition arrived for BlackBerry, they started to decline and this is genuinely a major reason. This is proven by the writing above.

You can compare Jobs to a LeBron James. Both are Prciks but once in a lifetime leaders. I doubt we'll see one soon at BlackBerry.
I understand your comparison and i hope BlackBerry can find someone to do the same thing Jobs did but it's unlikely BlackBerry will see the same results. If they survive it will be by carefully moving forward and developing a business plan that works. The last few years have been horrible.

One thing to note, Jobs lead Apple back not to take back the PC market from Microsoft. They went and disrupted the mobile world with a touched screen phone. Now whether BlackBerry can come back and do something disruptive or not, I don't know. One thing I know is they still own the physical keyboard arena and BB10 has tremendous amount of potential; however, the current screen size of the Q10 is still too small.

Post via CB Z10

I find it more than sufficient for my needs. There isn't much more they could do without making the size of the phone bigger or making it a slider--which is bound to fail.

--Q10 and Canadian all the way! Posted via CB10 on 10.2.0.1443. #IChooseBlackBerry10

The Q10 screen size seems sufficient for those who insist on a physical keyboard, ie. those that view their smartphone as primarily a communication device. Screen real estate is important for videos and games, but not quite so important for emails and BBM.

Posted via CB10

DISAGREE! Sorry, but the Q10 needs a similarly-proportioned screen to the Industry Standard ... not the square POS-size that it is. THAT is why I would rather ditch my hard-keyboard for the Z10 or, preferrably, the 30.

WHY? Because when viewing ANY video or photos of ANY kind, the LAST thing I want is black bars above and below, thereby reducing my viewable video/picture to tumbnail-size. WHAT'S THE FRIGGIN' POINT OF THAT?!?!?

YOUR comment smacks PRECISELY of the same "tools not toys" theology that is ONE of the root causes of this epic disaster.

L I S T E N I N G to the Customer is ALWAYS key in avoing ANY future FKCU-UPS ... and "THIS" isn't helping. Q10s are probably selling even worse than Z10s, at a time when 9 MILLION re-hashed and barely upgraded "new" POS iPhones alone flew off the shelves in the FIRST weekend ... because people WANT TOUCH screens. Large screens at that. And apps. And a cool Brand. Notice "Keyboard" isn't on that list? Neither is "Small Screen." That's why Samsung's New MONSTER phone is "AB-SO-frickin-LUTELY HUGE!"

Screen Real Estate is important for EVERYTHING and it's ONLY up to the BUYER to decide "what for" ... whether videos, baby pictures - or naked pics of your B/GF - or plain eMails. Because NO-ONE wants to use BBM's Video-Chat on a crappy little 3" screen.
Not even YOU.

THAT's my 2 cents from a penny-less country.
Cheers & Keep Moving!

They have to come out with a Super High spec 7 media Qwerty phone called the Q50 with a virtual Track Pad that can be turned Off or On by the user , and yes with a bigger screen like 3.80 inch screen and sold with a Dummy Tablet that comes with a typing physical keyboard. Then market the mobile computing aspect of the phone. Include Wireless charging, wireless HDMI, key Bold 9900 features... Etc...

The Q50 can be pre-ordered for a fee with side - ported Apps like Netflix, Instagram etc.

The Prosumer Q50 can't hurt !

I am in for the Q50 $$$

Great story, and I also agree, there have been many companies that came back after hitting bottom, and BlackBerry can do the same!!!!

Posted via CB10

Basically they f*cked themselves because of that co-CEO thing. Things moved too fast in the telecom space for dinosaurs to survive. They should just let the dev team take over the whole thing.

I agree you can't run a company with two CEOs. You need one person, one vision, one person to kick ass if it doesn't go according to plan.
Not sure if any other company in the world had two CEOs at any given time... too lazy to look it up.

And when has it been shown that developers are good leaders?

--Q10 and Canadian all the way! Posted via CB10 on 10.2.0.1443. #IChooseBlackBerry10

Oh right, I forgot. Google is doing so bad atm.

Dev team is not just techies, you have managers there too.

very interesting, thanks. Yes, there have been many Phoenix's that rose from the ashes including Apple. BBRY can be another...let's hope!

A Canuck with STL100-3 Z10 10.2.0.1743...yep a leak :)

The one guy that wanted change, Jim, was ousted. Remember when Thor took over, even Kevin was quite impressed, I wasn't buying it. Mike L doesn't understand the business anymore, Thor and mike have and will continue to run this company in the ground. It's sad but it's time to let go.

Jim was ousted because he had allowed the company to become slow and fat. He had no enterprise experience and was bamboozled by his subordinates.

He had a real problem acknowledging the companies problems and would have driven them off a cliff.

Thorsten Heins is in the middle of a turnaround. The changes in development relationships are amazing. It's like a completely different company. He's more approachable, likable and very smart. I hope Prem Watsa gives him the chance to complete the turn around.

Every big company goes through this process,Change is not easy for everyone,some will want it n some will be reluctant.
BlackBerry must focus on getting other investors cz i really dnt think this "fairfax" deal will do 'em any good

Now it's clear that Blackberry's management was/is a mess. How could anyone argue against BBM cross platform project? How can you be against a physical keyboard when you buit your name on it and see how efficient it is on BB10 ?
I still hope Fairfax will patiently rebuild Blackberry from its core business without letting down larger consumer market (let say 70% business focused/ 30% media-entertainment business) but to achieve that they must absolutely find a bold CEO with strong ideas and let him work without useless and harmful interferences from the board.

Posted via CB10

"How could anyone argue against BBM cross platform project? How can you be against a physical keyboard when you buit your name on it and see how efficient it is on BB10 ?"

The article is inaccurate. Cross platform BBM as we know it wasn't what Jim was suggesting. He wanted to charge for it.

And the Q10 was released within weeks of the Z10. It made no difference because the market was skewed.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-07-10/verizon-seen-owing-apple-up-to-...

This was particularly interesting to me because I always gave them benefit of the doubt when it came to missing deadlines. I know first hand that a lot of times no matter how hard you work, things go wrong and you're not able to deliver on time.

However this article made it clear that the problem wasn't that the programmers couldn't finish coding on time (which was my assumption this whole time) but rather that management could not come to consensus on critical decisions, sometime even for years!

Its fascinating that having a democracy inside a for-profit company can actually be a bad thing, slowing down decision making and innovation. If one person had "dictatorship" in this company, in the 6 years they wasted they could have tried all 2 or 3 strategies and scrapped the ones that didn't work, and moved on to the next. Sure there would have been some discontentment over the lack of input but like I said they could have gone down the list and tried multiple strategies if one didn't work, in the time it took them in reality to decide and execute on one.

Posted via CB10

I forgot to add, this is actually the first time I'm realizing that TH was more of the same. I scoffed at people who called him part of the old guard and a source of the original problem, but I stand corrected. I also thought of carriers as goons rooting for BlackBerry to fail, but now I see how many chances they gave BlackBerry, who proceeded to fail spectacularly to capitalize on them.

I also believed at first that BBM shouldn't go cross platform because it would take away a key incentive to buy BlackBerry phones. But making money and being successful in this business is no longer just about selling hardware, particularly low margin hardware. (Nobody views owning BlackBerrys as a privilege so nobody would pay a premium for that anymore. Which relegates BlackBerry to the realm of low margin devices if they want to increase market share).

Hopefully the new owners read this article or are already aware of these things, and internalize the failures and address the root problem of a molasses-like management culture.

Posted via CB10

I'm sure the potentially 'new' owners know this in spades, hence the low bid of $9 with no other bidders to be seen.

Couldn't have said it any better. My thoughts were identical to yours. Now I see it from a completely different aspect. Clean house. Old guard all of them must go.

Posted via CB10

Every one keeps talking about Steve Jobs, and he was THE old guard at Apple and look at what he came back to accomplish. Why couldn't Mike L come back and do the same thing for BlackBerry? They aren't the same kind of company as Apple, and wouldn't need as big of a miracle to come back. No one is saying they need to be no. 1, they just need to be viable and profitable again. The rest can come once they get some breathing room. Also remember, the reason Jobs was able to turn Apple around is because he cared about the brand he started, and didn't want to see it die. Mike L is the same way.

Posted via Microwave Oven

Agreed. I don't flatter myself to think I know The Way for them to get back on their feet, and plus hindsight is 20/20. The important thing is whether or not they do look back and learn from it, and try something different. I'm just really hoping for a comeback and if they can assure me that they will continue full support consumer for devices I'll be the first one to get the Z30 when it comes out.

TH has transformed the company.

Any developer would know this. And the first thing he did on getting the job was call Crackberry Kevin. Balsillie would never have done that.

Don't blame Heins for mistakes made earlier (that are still being paid for). The Globe article is interesting but highly inaccurate in its assumptions.

"Its fascinating that having a democracy inside a for-profit company can actually be a bad thing,"

Not Democracy per se. Much more of a collectivist attitude which can never work in a environment based on capitalism.

"However this article made it clear that the problem wasn't that the programmers couldn't finish coding on time (which was my assumption this whole time) but rather that management could not come to consensus on critical decisions, sometime even for years!"

Not true. They took on more than they could finish with BB10. And the divisions in the company meant that whole sets of function from BB7 were missing from BB10 (Rumour has it the teams wouldn't talk to each other).

Fortunately it is easy to sit behind a computer saying "BBRY needs to do A, B, C, and D" and then chastise them for not doing A and B, doing D, and only do C half arsed. Not making any excuses for them because I think they totally f'ed up, but you are fortunate not to have to deal with real world issues.. i.e. resource constraints, technology limitations, conflicting wants/needs from the "customers", internal culture issues, etc..

Posted via CB10

Dude you don't know where I sit or what I do and I won't even make those judgements about you. When CB members said that top execs leaving a company is never a good thing, lots of spin was reported. Being late is never good for any business especially a technology firm. How could they possibly miss repeated deadlines and expect uptake?

They have a whole forum to get ideas from, I doubt they took any of them. All of that old guard needs to go. Now their latest debacle with some BS story behind it, unable to launch BBM cross-platform. The spin from last week was incredible.

Keep believing the BS.

Well it is inevitable... BlackBerry is at the end !!! I'm a big BlackBerry fan and very sad to see how things are unfolding. I'm also an App Developer and I've been building apps for RIM since 2008. I had high hopes for BB10 and many development projects on the table... but now it's time to re focus... I'm currently working a project which is at about 50% completion, I will complete it but this might very well be my last...

Posted from my Z10 which really kicks ass... but unfortunately people are too dumb to buy them :(

Posted via CB10

Don't read the Globe and Mail, however. There is a fair point to be made. Who makes the best communications tools - Blackberry. How did they get in the position they are today - poor decision making. Remember when BB 10 first came out and they said there would only be 2 models?

I always tried defending BB and its decision makers, but this puts everything in a whole new perspective. Clearly the leadership of the company, including TH are utterly incompetent i they were against the very things that could have saved the company. I guess they really did need an outsider who understood the market because clearly no one currently inside of BlackBerry does. There's nothing left for this clown show but failure, and they seem adamant on racing towards it.

Interesting article! Answers a lot of questions I had. It also changes my mind on what I thought about Balsillie role. I think he was on to a good idea with the SMS 2.0 but was just to late when he lost control to Heins. They need to clean house of all the old baggage if and when they restructure. I'm an optimist most times but I'm not sure if this is to little to late.

Posted via CB10

Yah I had thought that maybe the new owners would keep TH has the CEO but now I really hope not. Definitely an outsider is needed, even at the price of $55M or whatever Heins' severance amounts to.

Posted via CB10

What the hell. Why does it seem that that sms 2.0 and the China plan were brilliant ideas. What missed opportunities. Sigh

Posted via CB10

Would explain a lot. Looks like BlackBerry is now dismantling BlackBerry old to BlackBerry new. The future is with BlackBerry 10 and BBM cross platform.

Posted via CB10

'You blew it up, you destroyed BlackBerry.
Damn you all to Hell.'

Slight variation on Charlton Heston's Taylor

Planet of the Apes 1968

Retraining over redundancies.

Get the people who know the devices to show people how easy it is to use BB10.
Instead let's throw 4000 people on the scrap heap.

'Defeat from the jaws of victory '

'Nothing worse than wasted talent. '

BlackBerry......Get it done

Posted via CB10

The article by the Globe is a well written piece with a lot of facts that really paints a not-so-pretty picture of what life has been like inside BBRY, especially in the executive ranks. It is too bad that they couldn't get their isht together because many of the items discussed in the article (aka getting BB10 devices to market earlier, rolling out SMS 2.0, and the big China deal) could have made BlackBerry THE big player in the mobile space. Sad to see this because I love my Berry..

Posted via CB10

Well written maybe.

But inaccurate and skewed to one perspective on the failure.

They shouldn't have rushed it to market so quickly.

The Globe sheds a lot of insight into how it all broke down, however what happened is in the past. We need to move on from all this.

It is now more important than ever to keep moving forward with the 10 O/S or risk alienating users, myself included , who have adapted & prefer 10 over the competition.

Probably best to split their business strategy into two parts: the Z series for the consumer market and the Q series for enterprise. I'd go so far as to say BlackBerry may want to consider making the Q series an improved O/S 7 environment only because this seems to be the environment organizations and government prefer. I'll leave that one to the experts and the consumer base that prefers a physical keyboard. I'm obviously part of the touch screen crowd.

I'm prepared as a consumer this year to upgrade to the Z30 because in spite of all, the negativity surrounding the Z10 the phone I currently use, its better in some ways than my wife' s iPhone which is not a knock to Apple products because I think their products are dynamite. The number of apps I'm finding in BlackBerry World are getting better and better all the time. I'd like to see this momentum continue.

A move too far away from the consumer base might make this base consider alternatives; myself include but not this year.

For now we'll see far into the corporate sphere and away from the consumer base BlackBerry plans to go.

Sent from my BlackBerry Z10

Bring back Laz & Jim and fire or de-mote the current Management team. Come out with a Super High spec Qwerty phone called the Q50 with a virtual Track Pad that can be turned Off or On by the user , and yes with a bigger screen like 3.80 inch screen and sold with a Dummy Tablet that comes with a typing physical keyboard. Then market the mobile computing aspect of the phone. Include Wireless charging, wireless HDMI, key Bold 9900 features... Etc...

The Q50 can be pre-ordered for a fee with side - ported Apps like Netflix, Instagram etc.

The Prosumer Q50 can't hurt !

I am in for the Q50 $$$

Posted via CB10

+1000 He most certainly doesn't.

QWERTY phones and ported apps. Hahaha... Here we go again...

A the dummy tablet thing was hilarious. I'll sure him buying all 50 of them will keep BB in business.

Super QWERTY High spec phone for the prosumer who has cash to spend. Walk into a room full of gadget phones and you walk in with a Q50 package ! Bingo !!

Nice article.
Seems the company had some good ideas about turning around but the organizational structure killed it. They need dynamic teams and structure. By the time they discuss an idea, the market would have been already changed.
Really surprised how a company with this structure has survived this long.
They need new dynamic,innovative team and structure.

Posted via CB10

When in doubt start over. Something men fail to do most of the time. BlackBerry needs to put the pride aside and start over. Money really makes some people stupid. I'm saddened by all the opportunity they put to waste. I read the whole article surprisingly. Props to the globe and mail and crackberry.

Posted via CB10

Sent from my BlackBerry Z10 and soon to be BlackBerry Z30.

I love a good roller coaster ride. This is one of the best!

Posted via CB10

Is it just me or is the only time you hear the word blackberry it's coming from news reports??? I've never seen any marketing or advertising on TV for the product which is amazing. IPhone 5c just came out and I see 50 commercials for it a day.

So Mike L wanted to concentrate on keyboard on my phones?? When it was clear as day that iphone was about to change the mobile phone platform completely. What an absolute chump he was, it's been proven that your average Joe on the street would go for a touch screen phone over a keyboard one. I wonder if blackberry had gone only keyboard phone only, how many apps we would have seen and whether it would have been successful or not.

Shame that mike L for all the good/great things he has done couldn't get his mindset towards a touch screen phone. The less said about the storm the better.

All in all its been one humongous cluster**** from the whole BlackBerry management and team. What a joke an absolute joke of a company to be led by these monkeys.

Posted via Z10

So that means Lazaridis was against touch screens and both Lazaridis and Heins were against BBM going cross platform?

Oh dear...

Posted via CB10

Excellent article. RIM's downfall appears to be a combination of poor timing, ineffective leadership, and lack of luck.

Sad. There have been SO many opportunities for these products (and the company) to succeed. But they've been consistently late out of the starting gate. The app ecosystem. BBM expansion. BB10. PlayBook.

Posted via CB10

Wow, I always Jim was the issue, but it was Mike not seeing the forest through the trees! And to think there is talk of Mike getting back involved with BB through Fairfax, scary!!

Good read, mistakes made by all but of course looking back is easy. It seemed like no matter what choice they made, they would've lost because it just took too long.

Posted via CB10

Sms 2.0 can still happen. Carriers haven't come up with a solution yet. Nobody pays for sms anymore it's just tossed in the package unlimited.

China is making moves with Apple more and more but nothing is concrete yet. This could still happen.

We shall see if under private management this and any other moves can be done.

Posted via CB10

Possible but not probable. These ideas made sense back then when BB was first to the table talking about them. Those courted companies 'kept moving' and have moved on without BB.

This is why big companies fail at some point. I work in a very big company that once was the bigest at what we do but we have fallen far since those days. The best ideas have to go through so many hoops to just be heard and then someone has to decide on it. Steve Jobs was pretty good at looking at an idea and seeing potential in it. Most companies don't have someone like that. It may not even reach them. With big companies they tend not to take chances. They play it safe esp when the money is coming in. Once it's not, your loosing "real" money fast. With the large size of the companies they have huge amounts invested in employees and real estate. In smaller companies their more likely to evolve quicker and run with ideas. I think the way Google is setup they tend to give their employees room to work on their own ideas and then sometimes implement them. Lots of Google's biggest hits are just things employees worked on their 20 % time. That's where in a given week the employees work on their own ideas for 20% of the week. One of these ideas was Gmail. Another idea was G+. In the company I work, none of these things would have possible. Like most big companies they where once big like BB but have fallen far from those days. People are working very hard but ideas are shot down left and right and eventually you do what they want but nothing more. You learn it's not worth you time to think "out of the box" because nothing changes. I don't work in tech but if my company did it would have gone down like BB. Tech is a what have you done lately business. One day you're on top. The next you're out of business or at the very least changed to a different business.

I love the Z10 at first I was a bit unsure after having a Bold and Curve, but this phone is brilliant but it needs better marketing, and I believe the reason it has not been marketed is most likely the idiotic in fighting within Blackberry,
A company is a team when a team is not working as a team there will be breakdowns, and this is what happen to Blackberry, all should be ashamed of themselves for letting their petty ego's get in the way.
I feel that Blackberry will rise again but there will be pain, loads of it, and when the smoke clears, I am not sure who or what will survive to be honest.
I have 2 years with this phone, so we will see what happens, it can either turn positive or it can completely belly up, which would be a sad day in Canadian Technology Front, ironically maybe different depends how you look at it. Canada at one time was at the forefront of Aerospace, with the Avro and what happen to that, and if you look at history the engineers went on to NASA ,and helped put men on the moon.,
Blackberry is a very important part of Canada, and I am hoping that the Fairfax deal does go through, we need to keep Blackberry in Canada.

There wasn't too much in there that was a surprise to me but that's because I've been following the company so closely for the past 4 years. Mike, Jim and Thor have all made stupid decisions and now we're paying for it. We as in shareholders and loyal customers.

Someone help me understand why the Z30 is coming out around the same time as the Nexus5 and will probably launch at a higher price point with 2/3 the specs?

Posted via CB10

One perspective from an inside view... the company has never really been about getting things done, or holding people accountable for anything except victories. When a lack of real action and accountability are present, combined with executives asleep at the wheel, the result is BlackBerry these days. I believe Thorsten was, and is a good CEO for the company, and it's naive to call for his ouster too. Thorsten took the helm of the Titanic just before it broke in half and sunk... what was he supposed to do? Laying off most of the company is a good start, sadly. There are some amazing, bright minds at BlackBerry, but they are bogged down by beaurocracy and a "these are my toys, don't touch" style of teamwork. The BB10 OS is a monument to what CAN be achieved by the people of BlackBerry, but there is so much more that could have been. I really hope BlackBerry rises to prominence once again. BB10 and a lean company at all levels is their key to success...

Posted via CB10

Great read!

My prediction is if/when the Fairfax deal goes through Thor will be gone, Lazaridis will be back and they will focus on what got them to the top, the corporate/business customers. As long as they're profitable it doesn't matter what % they hold world wide in total market share as the total smart phone market has swelled in recent years to include the non productive toy/gadget crowd.

I remember seeing a Bold 9000 for the first time in the hands of a very powerful ceo and thinking "wow that's the real deal right there" and wanting to get one immediately. If they can get the big business leaders and higher-ups using their products again as the tools they were intended to be, everyone else in the will want one too.

Quit trying to get cozy with an audience that focuses more on TMZ instead of BNN.

Anyway, just some thoughts from a BlackBerry fan.

Posted via CB10

The guy who runs TMZ is also a CEO. So is the guy who runs Apple, BNN. Or do those types of CEOs not count in your world...?

Take your time...

I'll wait...

The is the classic issue of have a two many partnership. They all end bad if they even do last that long as blackberry did. So it was bond to happen. BB10 can be the best OS in the market, but rush deadlines trying to play catch up makes it look like a failure to many. Let's hope we can correct this with a right leader if we survive.

Posted from the most powerful smartphone,z10

So from that article I get this:

Mr Ballsy was doing everything he could to push BlackBerry out there but he was held back by Mr Lazy and Mr Heinous.

Fable Publishing: C0012255F

BlackBerry reminds me of the boy that cried wolf, 28 times too many. Then told the truth (BB10 OS), albeit too late.

Posted via CB10

Hope has now died.

I think I will buy a Q10 just so I can tell my grand kids I once owned the last great BlackBerry phone.

Posted via CB10

I want BlackBerry to survive soooooooo bad, sometimes I think it's not natural but I can't envision myself using an Android or Apple device. People always ask me what my Z10 can do that their Samsung or iPhone can't and it's not easy to explain unless you have used the device...................Productivity! The OS is built for getting things done, not for playing. The Hub and Peek has changed the way I use my phone and I can't imagine how I managed without it. Being able to glance to what's happening in multiple areas of the device without leaving the app I'm in. Simple things like that. Call it blind faith, but I believe if they can get BBM channels out there it would do really well and I'm hoping for that.

Hilarious, I do the same thing. I can't ever see myself using a different platform. I've briefly tried different family and friends ios and android devices and just can't see me doing my job with them.

Posted via CB10

If they just focus on keyboard type I'm sure BlackBerry World would not grow like it now. Z10 quite good but not so good. Z10 still have some rooms to fix and improve for better power performance in future. My issues with z10 is battery drain and hot cip or processors under. That only my issue other than that it just ok.

Posted via CB10

BlackBerry almost had a monopoly on SMS 2.0.

I can see Jim saying "I told you so!". He's a smart business man.

Posted via CB10

Ok I have to say that was the best article I've ever read on why RIM/Blackberry is where it is right now. Thanks for the heads up Crackberry!

Great story...too bad blackberry didn't innovate sooner...now I understand why we got devices that were old and now I see why it's always too late because a divided company. i hope blackberry can innovate and listen to the consumer market on what we really want...i have to say I did get a Z10 but I don't really use it anymore ever since I got the Q10 it just feels right and it's just better device. after January when they took forever to launch BB10 and it's last year model specs the hype for BB10 just went away.

Posted via CB10

The attitude of telling customers what they need, rather than giving them what they want. We still get that. You don't need instagram, because you have Facebook and bbm channels. You don't need Netflix, because you have crackle. You don't need banking apps, because you have a Web Browser. You don't need toys, because you have a tool.

Very little in this article surprised me. Think a bit more highly of Jim though. I think the 4500 layoffs should start at the top and work down.

Posted via CB10

Very interesting read. More like an Epilogue to a great dream ending up as a nightmare.
its a great lesson and im sure it will be one of the top cases to be studied in Business schools for years to come. how can one single CEO destroy a company in less than 2 years ( board has its share of blame for all this too )
Technology is a cutthroat sector nevertheless Blackberry always had its own niche for alot of years, a series of wrong decisions ( evidently ..) led us to where we are now.

Internal fighting in a hyper-competitive market and having an ego in believing that you are the greatest thing since sliced bread is what killed them. Jobs was a tyrant and believed that nothing was ever good enough and always pushed the envelope. At the end he would even accept the fact that cancer could kill him!

BlackBerry needs a leader that is willing to step on people's toes to get things done.

Why would Heins want the company to succeed when his contract included getting paid more if it didn't and he got bought out.

I guess Jim saw that he wasn't being taken seriously in the company and quickly became disinterested in BlackBerry but then became interested in purchasing the Phoenix Coyotes!

This all makes sense now.

My epiphany I guess.

Posted via CB10

This article is great in depth reporting. Still it fails to get at the heart of the biggest problem. In recent years, BlackBerry has had strength in essentially 3 specific and separate markets areas: 1) enterprise and prosumers 2) keyboard loving consumers, and 3) Users of BBM/BIS who want to avoid SMS and/or data costs.

Once you see this you realize that their biggest strategic mistake was to go after one big consumer market head to head with Apple, Google, Samsung, etc. while letting these 3 markets get ignored and taken for granted. So for example, with number 1, as a first priority they needed to push BES10 much harder and faster into the MDM space so that there could be some buzz about key bb10 differentiators (e.g. Balance, UI, multitasking, etc.) for enterprise to be one of the major initial adopters of the bb10 phones. For the second market, the q10 is a fine product, but they needed to make sure ALL of the bb7 keyboard tricks were incorporated or had equivalent shortcuts. I don't agree that they should have released a keyboard bb10 device before a touchscreen, because the timing for keyboard lovers is less important than the love itself. Market that love in a targeted way and keep / build on this core market. With the third market a strategy to leverage BBM cross-platform AND take advantage of the NOC had to be carried out in a manner that works on the cheapest whitebox phones. It sounds like Balsillie was on the right track here, but now that it's a general app rather than under carrier control, I'm not sure how the NOC is leveraged (can anyone provide some comments on this?). It's now already very late for this market. They should have paid more attention to the popularity of Kik (it's right down the street fer pete sake) and got the bb7 team working on rolling this out much sooner (cross platform is not qnx dependent) so that they felt more connected to the future of the company. Ultimately the company seems to now be realizing what I'm saying, but only after the board and senior management has essentially destroyed all the net value, brand value, shareholder value, and organizational morale. Sad state of affairs, for sure. They need fresh blood from top to bottom.

Posted via CB10

A lot of great ideas on both sides that never came to market. Tough decisions to make. We need focus and hopefully now they could see after the fact what needs to done. Cross platform on Carriers rather than a stand alone app on iPhone or Android is a big question. If go the Carrier root they could market the idea and phone but have to share the profits. If you go directly as an app, you will market it free but no revenue for years. What to do?

Posted via CB10

I hope BlackBerry makes a huge comeback, then make a movie and make a huge profit out of that as well.

The behind the scenes sounds pretty intense. I'd watch it.

Posted via CB10

It's never good to have Co ceo's because there will be two visions on the direction the company needs to go and it will slow down production and cause more confusion. You can't blame Thor for this. Would you rather be using a Bold 9900 or Z10? I think the BlackBerry 10 os is the way to go and a drop in price that is why android is killing everybody right now. BlackBerry til my updates stop coming

Posted via CB10

Some of you can't seem to grasp that Android is killing them because REGARDLESS of how much you pay for your phone, if you have access to the latest OS, you have access to the same content that every other phone does. A $0, $99, $700 android can all view Netflix, Instagram, etc.

They now have potential iPhone killers in the Z10 and Z30, but they need to get their marketing act together. The tv ads in the UK don't focus on the capabilities of the devices.

Posted via CB10

"They now have potential iPhone killers in the Z10 and Z30,"

The Z10 has already flopped and is being pulled off carrier shelves. Please explain how it will kill the iPhone. I'm how can a phone that doesn't have large scale distribution take down the iPhone.

Or were you just being sarcastic?

This sounds so much like HP and the dysfunction of their board. BlackBerry needs to admit it has an issue and if the Fairfax deal goes through there needs to be a major 'come to Jesus' meeting among BlackBerry executives and the new owners. A strategy needs to be decided on and executed and something needs to happen fast.

Also, has BlackBerry ever heard of a project manager?

Posted via CB10

All I can say is that I love my Q10. The build quality is so much better than Samsung Galaxy S,2,3,4. Plastic toy for gamers, not a tride and true business device. I used my Q10 yesterday pretty consistently from from around 6AM to about midnight and still had 40 percent battery life.

It is often said that an average plan well executed is much better an exceptional plan poorly executed. I think the focus must be on the execution- not the plan.

Posted via CB10

Very interesting and informative article from the Globe and Mail. Thanks for linking.

@dunaway - Posted with TMO Q10 via CB10

Only very AGRESSIVE marketing can save Blackberry.
The new devices are excellent but no one knows it.

Posted via CB10

Heins needs to GO! And nothing should be paid to him for being a bumbling buffoon. He is not a visionary, just a person out to make a buck by whatever means possible. Think about it...this guy was head of their handset division...somehow, explains it all.
Great article.
Thanks...

Good article. This case will be studied for years. Really difficult to comment but I always wondered how long RIM could survive against the big guys. To me it is this. But there are many lessons to be learned. I like bb10. But I think BlackBerry should have gone with Android to start. Second, the fee structure killed it. Economics rules. The cheapest syst that meets the best quality will win.

Posted via CB10

To quote the late, great Paul Harvey, "And that's, the rest of the story." This is a great example of how journalism should be done. Sure it's doom and gloom but it's done in an informative and non-biased way.

Posted via CB10

I don't care what happened in the past. I want BBRY to stay a public company and get on with deploying BBM.

Dont you think it was just about impossible for BlackBerry to have success with BB10, stories, rumors, reports of BlackBerrys decline and eventual expiration have been around for more than a few years. Once negativity is in the media that often your screwed, nobody wants your shut, even if it's actually good.

Posted via CB10

It's a sad story. As a developer of Wine Diary I found this story painful. I can't imagine all the employees sadness now. One day you work for one of the best technology company and now you know nothing about the future. :(

Posted via CB10

It sounds like the visionaries were overruled by the techies and now BlackBerry is in "no man's land."

Running a large company should been in the same light as running a country. You can have your Parliament, you Congress, Senate, pick your poison. But there can only be one leader to spearhead growth and adaptation. Consensus isn't always a productive thing. And collectivist attitude to decision making will ultimately fail.

I want to add...in hindsight Heins was and is the wrong guy for the job. After reading this article you can not help but shake your head at the missed opportunities. Maybe Jim and Mike can come back and give the CEO job to a master marketer like John Legere who is running T-Mobile. Say what you want but he has done wonders at T-Mobile and is full of energy.

I'm not particularly sold on any of the schools of thought. Whether BBM is a hit (or a flop) is yet to be determined. As well, I love the Z10, as an overwhelming percentage of (Z10) users would agree. My Z10 is the best of both worlds, and I use it for business and pleasure. Sure there are options and apps I would like to have available also, and if Wall Street fails with their bid to crush BlackBerry, they have a great chance of becoming the success that they could be. Does anybody have a logical reason why the 10 OS is crap? Not a chance in hell. All these alleged reports of the OS being unstable are a mystery to me (and if you want glitchy....an Android is the device for you). I figured with all the info about the NSA's monitoring, and with all the hacking going on, that it might draw more users to the platform. I guess watching a behemoth crumble is more important for the masses than their personal info getting hacked....as odd as it sounds. If the BB10 OS was released when it was originally supposed to, with adequate marketing, BlackBerry would not be in this nightmare. I will support the OS, and continue to buy BlackBerry for as long as they remain the most secure platform out there.

Sent from the future on my Z10.

I have to admit the initial 10.0 OS had issues I was doing the 5 swipe to recharge the Hub daily but Blackberry very soon came out with the 10.1 then the10.1MR OS and man I have not shut off my phone since. And I have used both iP5 and Z10 . The iP5 is a toy email platform and when I show the Z10 Hub people agree. 10.2OS will leap even further the iO7 email platform.

Blackberry internal conflict is causing its own downfall. I love bb10 but I don't see any future for it anymore.

Posted via CB10

Heins is an idiot that was hired by an incompetent company. So many missed opportunities.

Can't get the rollout of their OS right. Can't get the rollout of cross platform BBM right..... delay after delay.

Just die BlackBerry, you are a blemish to Canadians.

Posted via CB10 on my white Z10

Heins has a PhD in Physics. He may be many things but he's not an idiot.

The Globe article authors on the other hand are idiots. They have interviewed a handful of disgruntled ex-employees and come up with a one sided view without giving the alternate side.

This is exactly the kind on garbage that has been killing BlackBerry for the past few years. Thank goodness Prem Watsa will take them private.

The only idiot here is u. Read many of your comments and most do not make sense at all. Why are u defending TH or this management team. They have done a really bad job!
GET REAL!

In what way has TH done a bad job? There have been issues with marketing - due largely to a skewed US market, and the BBM for Android release was done badly (should come soon) but those are minor compared to blunders before his time.

In 18 months Thorsten Heins has restructured the company, implemented an entire new OS and eco-system, greatly expanded BlackBerry World, dramatically cut costs reducing the staff by half without impacting service, released 5 new phones, and will release BBM for Android and iPhone - probably in the next couple of weeks - with BlackBerry Channels to come soon afterward no doubt. For developers BlackBerry is a whole different ball game with maybe the best environment for any smartphone. None of this is mentioned in that rather poor Globe article.

Finally BlackBerry has a chance of success and is thwarted largely because negative press (such as the Globe article) has destroyed the public image of the company. As a Canadian news outlet they should be ashamed of their contribution to the damage.

What Heins needs is a year or so without negative press coverage to complete the job. Hopefully he'll get that chance when the company goes private.

sorry man...but you have to get your head out of you aXX and quit sucking up to this guy, it's embarrassing to say the least. He has done nothing for this company other than to drive them down the tubes with every comment and/or strategy he has implemented. It's not hard to lay off or fire people but very difficult to execute a plan that is successful and this guy, your hero has killed off all the good things that BB stands for. Anyone can throw darts at the wall and hope for the best and then revise their strategy once again. BB needs a leader who is looking after the company, has vision, can make believers out of the masses instead of just trying to line their pockets...quite simple really.

Heins is an idiot.. or maybe he is faking to be one to rob 50 mill from blackberry..

Posted via CB10

He doesn't get $50 million - his remuneration is based on the share price - which has kinda dived. And if he stays as CEO he gets nothing.

But don't let the facts get in the way of your outrage.

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