Jim Balsillie dismisses comments made by Nokia's Stephen Elop

By Bla1ze on 15 Feb 2011 08:30 pm EST
Jim Balsillie dismisses comments made by Nokia's Stephen Elop

With Mobile World Congress 2011 well under way, Research In Motion has been showing off the BlackBerry PlayBook to Barcelona's many attendees and to say it has been well received is a bit of an understatement. The BlackBerry booth has had a constant flow of people to it. That said, some recent comments made by Nokia's Stephen Elop seemed to of have lit a fire under Co-Chief Executive Officer Research In Motion, Jim Balsillie.

In a recent interview Elop was noted as having stated "the smartphone ecosystem was now a three horse race between Windows, Android and Apple." Which prompted a response from Balsillie "I don't know how you can say that we are not in the race," Ballsillie backed up that statement by re-enforcing some Research In Motion facts such as the 70% growth they saw last year and their achievement of being the number one smartphone producer in the UK. Balsillie aslo refuted claims of RIM being solely Enterprised based by advising that 80% of BlackBerry subscribers are consumers. When Ballsilie was asked about people writing RIM off he responded "Are people writing us off? We have had huge growth in the last year. I wouldn't write us off".

No, Research In Motion may not be pushing out press release after press release announcing new devices from Barcelona but to say they are a complete write-off at this point is pretty out of the ballpark. With the BlackBerry PlayBook launch not that far off and the 2011 road map well outlined, one could agree with the analysts and say RIM is transitioning right now to put the themselves in a better place further down the road. In any event, the company isn't going anywhere anytime soon and considering Elop had to look toward Microsoft to save the once number one Nokia from themselves, speaks volumes.

Source: BBC

Reader comments

Jim Balsillie dismisses comments made by Nokia's Stephen Elop


LOL. I am a windows fan. Love the OS for computers, not sure why but I just do. My first Smartphone was a Treo 700W. Windows recent Mobile OS looks like a toy. No today screen unless you are an SMS, Facebook or twitter user it is a joke of an OS from what I can tell. And last but not least if you bought a windows phone you are stuck with that OS until you got a new phone. Not sure if it changed but no OS upgrades like the other 3 OS's provide.


Also Kevin Blaze et. al. you might want to post a link to an article in the FT today in which a few big telecoms operators over there are saying the Apple "walled garden" will fail up against the web just like WAP failed. They said it might take longer to fail but ultimately will. I believe this is true. What we see is a classic Apple over-reach, classic S Jobs.

It also makes Mike L's views and relationship with carriers look a bit smarter than people here have been giving him credit for.

Is Apple invulnerable to carriers? I think not raise the apple data plan rates and demand will dive fast. Carriers have been reluctant to do so because the phone was hyped like crazy but that wears off and competitor phones now do basically the same thing. A BB QNX phone could be COULD be a real iPhone killer with help from the carriers.

I don't understand how someone in the industry could overlook Blackberry in favor of Windows mobile, which only recently has started pumping out handsets with their new OS. Good to hear a Blackberry CEO tell another manufacturer to get their facts straight. Again. Ahem...Steve Jobs...we're looking at you lol

Big words from Elop, considering his company he had to "sell out" to Microsoft in order to stay viable....... LOL

if the rumours are true that Nokia courted RIM before Microsoft, then these comments are being made because RIM told Nokia to get lost and sent them to die along with their new partners, Microsoft.

I could understand saying a two-horse race between iPhone and Android, particularly if you're looking just at the consumer and not so much the business/international market, but if you're going to include Windows in the race, how do you not include BlackBerry?! I do like the look of the new Windows Phone, but last I saw any kind of stats on it, they were not even close to the other three.

Well it is worth pointing out that if the Playbook was released and selling like hot cakes Elop couldn't have said what he did. Also Balsille could have said something like "funny we just sold a million playbooks last month." That would have been the perfect comeback.

So come on, please at least give us the date.

yeah well don't sell yourself short on that statement, and don't be surprised when the playbook only sells under 300,000 units...in six months.

Um are you forgetting there are over 2 million registered crackberry members alone? 300,000 in 6 months I don't think so.

I wonder how often a person has to logon to stay a registered member??

The forums are not nearly as busy as they were back in the days of the STORM1.

That said, the tablet market is still a niche market. Very few business are going to see a NEED to provided the Playbook in addition to a Blackberry. And RIM is still going to have a hard time to beat the iPad (1 or 2) in the consumer market. Never mind all the competition there is in the tablet market now. 300,000 in the 1st six months might be generous for a device that needs a Blackberry in order to use some of the most popular BB Apps.

The Playbook won't even come close to beating the iPad, but that's not the point. The point is about Windows Mobile.

I think the Playbook will be very successful, I may be wrong only time will tell. Also I think you are off on the business perspective. A tablet that is as lightweight and easy to carry as PB has a ton of potential.

Recall there are 250,000 BES servers that's a little more than 1 PB per BES server. That isn't the companies buying them that is one guy that already owns a BB buying a PB. yes I know they are all over the world but I'm talking 1 person, so make it 5 people, you don't think there are 50,000 BES servers in the US?

Wrong on the needing a blackberry if you are talking about 6 months. 3G and 4G versions will be out before then.

good call! "Elop had to look toward Microsoft to save the once number one Nokia from themselves" basically Nokia ask for a bailout! I though all this bailout stuff was so 2008/2009.
Its going to be like a sony when it became sony erricson. nokisoft phone here we come lol. I cant wait until they merge there name heck Microsoft should just buy em out right one day. now that would be news.

If your talking about a race and RIM is not involved at least let it be iPhone and Driod. But when you through Windows 7 in the mix, that annoys the fuck out of me. What has Windows 7 done to put themselves in the position to put them alongside Android and IOS? And this is coming from a company that had to jump onto the W7 bandwagon to stay relevant.

If this company wants to talk shit than at least create your own OS to compete with the top systems, rather than do what so many companies have done lately, (LG, Samsung, Motorola etc.). With their partnership with Microsoft, they pretty much said they lost in the ability to make good devices on their own.

Nokia's latest news just shows their weakness and their lack of ability to fight, which is why I plan to stay with Blackberry and if QNX just doesn't work out then oh well.

This is what they call optics. He wants people (i.e., dumb reporters) to think WinMo is in the game so he just says it. Of course what else is he going to say.

I'm really not sure why they went with MS instead of andriod. I guess the rumor is true that MS is paying a lot. I don't own an adroid phone but I can tell you now I'd buy a nokia over a motorola or a samsung. Nokia builds the second best handsets out there I think after RIM. I hope the QNX running android apps does work out, not that I personally want any android apps but I think it would throw a lot of consumer's RIM's way.

It had to be amusing to Mr. Balsillie to be dismissed by Elop as it's RIM that is taking over Nokia's former strongholds in the UK,Indonesia and Latin America.

And it also had to be disheartening for Nokia's plans of a renewed push into the US to hear the CEO of Verizon to say that the big three are Apple,Android and RIM and they have little interest in the Nokia and MS partnership.

I am a former BlackBerry user and it doesn't mean that I am no longer a fan. Even I find Nokia's claim absurd.

Well said Mister Balsillie. I'm surprise with all these RIM bashing from competitors, they are handling it very well and in a classy way. Stop hating!

Why are you surprised at the RIM bashing from competitors? Just look at how many Crackberry users here bashing RIM for crappy phones and OS's.

What has RIM done in the phone realm recently? Where are the dual core based phones running QNX?
While HTC, Motorola, Samsung and others adopt dual core Snapdragons and Tegra2 chips with Android, and Apple developing it's own dual core A5 chip for April release. Where is RIM?

Oh wait, they are too busy with Playbook right now. Not good.

Its proud talk, similar to this, that got Nokia into the trouble its in now. If the people at RIM keep it up then in a year or 2 you'll probably be blogging about their demise.

Apple and Android are dominating with cutting edge tecnology and all RIM does, correct me if am wrong, is to push out useless OS upgrades.

Let's be honest, without BBM what's the difference between a nokia phone and a blackberry? Let me just quickly carry out a battery-pull While you think of a smart reply to that question. I just bought a fart app from app world :)

And please enough of this playbook talk, its just a poor man's Ipad.

You're a moron. This is a blackberry website. Obviously people are going to be discussing the next product being released from RIM.

When we finally have full stats on the Playbook and it proves to have better specs than the second gen iPad (Which based on current rumors, it will), and RIM discovers a way to let all of the Android applications run (Which if you read any newspaper you would know that Bloomberg has stated that RIM is currently working on allowing some sort of Dalvik JVM emulation), come back and talk to me. Tell me how that device that can do everything your iPad can, except it also has real multitasking and full flash support, and has better tech specs on paper is a "Poor Man's iPad" simply because it isn't made by Apple.

You're just like every other troll that comes to this site. Well guess what, we don't care what you have to say, we don't care about your uneducated opinion is, so get lost.

Another socially challenged teenager, you can communicate without the insults you know. its easy, let me show you....... Hi, my name is Michael, I respect your opinion but I don't agree with it.

"And please enough of this playbook talk, its just a poor man's Ipad."

poor as in smarter and not stupid to be controlled by apple and their dumb ecosystem then yeah but in what ways does the ipad compare to the playbook and dont bring hat apps bull..not even that ipad 2 can compare to the playbook..let me see you take a picture with the ipad..oh yeha no camera and why because when apple puts a camera on their new ipad its gonna change every thing again.
dumb fanboys go read a book and stop playing with silly birds on your devices

Very odd comments from the CEO of Nokia - a very respectable competitor. I work in an office with over 100 people. The office is primarily a call centre so, all phone services are provided as part of a hub network. No individual phones/smartphones are required, at all.

I am constantly surprised how many of those 100+ people I see with Blackberrys. It is definitely not required for the job so, they have them strictly for personal use. Clearly, the Blackberry is highly appreciated by consumers for strictly personal usage. I can also say the vast majority would have a Blackberry again if their current one failed.

Odd comments? perhaps not considering the NOKIA CEO is actually former microsoft executive.

nokia as a company lost its soul moving to windows 7 phone. sure its an okay os but there's a reason why so many people bought nokia phones especially lower end market - ease of use, costs and features. shame about meego and future updates to symbian. windows 7 update better be worth it nokia.

I like how people just shrug of blackberry. The devices are great except for the occasional battery pull. THe road map ahead looks great for RIM and the fact they are combining the trackpad with their touch devices makes it even better alongside their 6.1 os and QNX. it's going to be a great year ahead!

"With the BlackBerry PlayBook launch not that far off and the 2011 road map well outlined, one could agree with the analysts and say RIM is transitioning right now to put the themselves in a better place further down the road."

RIM is going out and announcing what they HOPE to do six or eight months from now. Sounds like a move from a Company that realized that are falling behind and are trying to play catch-up by announcing these great future devices. Only problem is by the time we will see these devices in the stores... they will just be mid grade devices when compared with with others will have.

Blackberry used to be at the top of the food chain for smartphones. Apple and Motorola have surpassed them now. I wish Blackberry would make a push to be top dog again by getting their QNX based phones out. They should also be the front runner for 4G phones which seems to be the future. With that being said Nokia shouldn't be making any comments because they've almost fallen off the map.

This is really a bit of a distortion of the truth. As much as I love blackberry phones, the truth is that Blackberries never were/ never have been smart phones. They are the world's best communication devices that morphed to phones.

Apple has had their turn in building a smart phone: The iPhone. Motorola used Andriod to build their first smartphones and soon RIM will "enter" the smart phone market with QNX... and then the world will learn what a smart phone is.

Judging by the playbook and thinking about the future of chip technology and QNX ability to do multicore. RIM is basically going to put a computer in the palm of your hand. THAT will be a smart phone.

the elop guy is a Big Blind Idiot. that's why Nokia went down the drain. I think he should be replaced ASAP.
Indonesia was the biggest Nokia market in the whole SE Asia. now it's nowhere to be seen. only those cheap phones is selling well to the farmers. Smart-phone wise... u can only see 1 Windows based phone in 10,000 BlackBerry here.

Nokia was already down the drain before Elop took over. Elop is trying to save the company from the money hungry crappy OS that is Symbian and made the change to Windows Phone 7.

Give them time and you will see them recover.

i think if bes was open source even apple will try to use it in their devices the face that Nokia joined with MS would change anything people dont buy W7 phones and they wouldnt start everyone wants a phone that can do the "BBM" or an iphone

How can Elop say that? He can. Apple, Android, and Windows are tops in the cellphone and smartphone market. Even Howard Stern let go his BlackBerry for an Android. I added an android to my smartphone collection. and I was with BlackBerry for at least 5 years. These phones are the way of the future, and the Android Market beats the BlackBerry App World by a mile, in my opinion only. Most of the Apps App World has, I have on my Android also now. C'mon RIM, make a phone that a consumer can enjoy as well as the "businessman or businesswoman."