*UPDATED* Dear Mike: Touchscreens are popular. Just Saying. Love, CrackBerry

By Bla1ze on 16 Apr 2010 04:30 pm EDT
Mike Lazaridis Once Again Downplays Touchscreen Devices; Adds Tablets To The Mix This Time

*UPDATE - At the time of writing this article we had based our original information as it was posted on Electronista. Since the time if the original publishing, new information has come about wherein the quoted comments from Co-CEO Mike Lazaridis may have been taken out of context or looked into to deeply. Since the new information is now available to us, we have posted the transcript below the break for you all to read. *

It's stories like this that make our brains hurt. When RIM's Founder and Co-CEO Mike Lazaridis says things like "touch-only phones like the iPhone aren't that popular" we find it really confusing... 1) We're pretty sure touch-only phones are popular - we see a lot of them and more being offered every day. 2) We're pretty sure RIM makes some touchscreen-only phones (whether they've made a good one or not yet you can debate in the comments). 3) We're pretty sure RIM is going to keep making at least some touchscreen-only devices moving ahead.

This new talk of touchscreen phones and tablets is stemming from a recent TD Newcrest technology conference keynote Lazaridis gave in Toronto. While Lazaridis was downplaying the efforts of the iPhone he addressed the tablet hype as well. Lazaridis claims there is no market for tablets and that as smartphones are getting more powerful and more computer like, this by extension would reduce the need for a tablet. While we tend to somewhat agree that tablets and devices like Apple's new iPad are still finding their place in the world, the fact that Apple has pushed well over 300,000 of them and stores have long waiting lists clearly shows there is indeed an emerging market here that appears to have momentum behind it.

This is one of those posts where I could go on a big never-ending rant, so we'll end this early knowing that WES 2010 is just around the corner, where we'll hopefully gain some more insight into this and other areas of interest surrounding RIM. Worst case, we'll carry on this conversation in a live CrackBerry Podcast next week where plenty of booze is involved. That will be fun. 

In an effort to clarify the situation at hand, here are some excertps from the transcript from the TD Newcrest keynote:

Transcript excerpt #1

<Q>: Let me move on to one more. In December, you gave an interview to the Financial Post, there was a really interesting paragraph that you talked about handling devices and you raised a lot of good questions about their value in what they would accomplish. You didn’t really spend as much time, I think as everyone here would want, if you want to answer me, and it was a shorter interview. Maybe you can answer some of those questions now, the markets evolved a little bit, there’s been some product announcements. What are your thoughts about that type of form factor?

<A – Mike Lazaridis>: Well. The trends we’ve been following have been an -- there’s been, over the last three to four years, organizations have discovered the value of smartphones clearly, and that’s why we’re here, and that’s what we’re talking. And smartphones are always starting to space the need for laptops, but not all laptops, and not all needs. And I know that there are risks organizations that ask their customers when they join, when get hired, do you want a smartphone or a laptop very few get the opportunity to have both. So I think that’s an important thing, those are differentiated.

So the question you have ask yourself is when it comes to tablet, what market or what opportunities still it’s solving, what problem is it solving, and is it just a replacement laptop. I think that’s a difficult one to judge. But I think again if you look at what’s happening with smartphones are getting bigger, screens are getting bigger and getting more powerful and faster CPUs, more memory, we go in the 4G networks, we’ve got Wi-Fi, it’s just got everything, the operating systems are becoming more, more powerful, the tools are becoming more, more powerful, more applications are being developed, and are being used in more and more both enterprise and consumer spaces. So, I think at this point if you have to take the whole thing into consideration, you can’t say what’s the market for tablets in exclusion of the other devices, you have to put the whole thing together and I don’t think it’s that clear yet.

Excerpt #2

<Q>: In the consumer market, it seems like, in the smartphones, especially, there is a line to be drawn between QWERTY and touchscreen, and you dominate in the QWERTY space. And I wondered what you think -- I think the audience by watching, what do you think about the touchscreen form factor and how that needs to evolve and what do you think you need to do?

<A – Mike Lazaridis>: Well, I mean, clearly the best thing to do is to provide the choice and let the consumer and the customer to ultimately decide. I think what we’re seeing in the market though is that, it’s not clear if one side fits all and it really isn’t. And you can see it because a lot of people are realizing the incredible value and lifestyle improvement that are well-designed QWERTY push messaging experience brings to table. It’s really, really important. We’re finding -- if you look at the surveys, you can see that large amount of the customers that have purchased touchscreen devices in last two years, they intend to get a device with the QWERTY keyboard on it now, right. I mean, they’ve got into a point where they’ve realize that a touchscreen alone is not enough; so that’s important.

I think with the trackpad technology is going into the BlackBerrys now, we provide a gesture and an elegance to control. Again, that’s unmatched. So, I think that is a third dimension, because you talk about touchscreen devices, you talk about QWERTY devices, but I would argue this is third, the whole control, command and control of things like well-designed trackpad technologies. I think, that’s really, really important. And I think, we continue to evolve with the research and invest in the Storm technology to make sure we get those right, we learned a lot and we continue to evolve that platform. I think that again what’s important is we provide that choice and we don’t lose sight of the fact what’s made us famous and what’s driving our sales, which is our QWERTY keyboards and our incredible track [indiscernible].

Source: Electronista

Reader comments

*UPDATED* Dear Mike: Touchscreens are popular. Just Saying. Love, CrackBerry


I HATE touchscreens, why would I want to waste time sliding my fingers on a screen when I can easily save time with a regular qwerty keyboard?

Keep the regular phones coming.

Depends on your priorities. If your smartphone is mainly used as a communication tool and you're using the keyboard (sending messages) for 30% + of the time the device is in your hands, then for sure... the keyboard trumps and sacrificing display size makes sense. 

But for people where they are using the device more for consumption, be it reading / web browsing / playing games / etc. (using the keyboard less than 10% of the time the device is in the hands) the benefits of the larger display arguably outweigh the smudges on the glass. 

Clearly it comes down to choice and what suits your needs best (ie. Kevin's Hierarchy of Smartphone Needs) but to ignore or deny the presence, popularity and growth in touchscreen-only devices seems to be contrary to what's happening out there.

I actually picked up an iPad this weekend in Miami to see how it is and if and how I would actually integrate a device like that into my life.  It's only been a few days, but am seeing the "market" for it... it really is a nice around the house device. Sitting on the couch, lying in bed, reading while eating breakfast. It's not someting I'd want to lug around with me (exception - good for plane rides) and it's not exactly a productivity tool, but it adds value in a household.  It might not be a gadget that every single person buys (like a cell phone/smartphone) to carry around with them at all times, but I could see it as becoming something like a Nintendo Wii, where every household ends up with one to begin with (instead of a coffee table book, it's the coffee table tablet). I don't find the iPad to be in competition with my BlackBerry though... I haven't used my BlackBery any less since getting an iPad.  Rather, the iPad has been in competition with my Macbook Air / Macbook Pro which tends to go with me from room to room when I'm at home. iPad/tablets still have a way to go, but I'd there's certainly going to be a market for them. 

Anyways... will stop here. Talk on it at WES next week :)

FYI not everyone needs a keyboard to type out massively long emails for work. Some people are just casual texters and want the phone for browsing the web and scrolling through a fluid OS. This is where other platforms succeed and RIM does not.

I'm a student & work with a web design company. I have the 9530 and I like the typing on it a lot. I've typed several 250-500+ word essays on it on short notice, respond to most emails I get on it, and definitely use it for typing more than 30% of the time and haven't had a problem. So I think it's more of a preference.

I get 100-150 emails a day. If I have to type out anything longer than three sentences, Im using my laptop.

I did all the serious writing for both my undergrad and masters dissertations on my Bold. Mostly with my feet kicked up on a sofa.

I find it so easy to work like that; whenever I have an idea or something catches me that I want to add to my work, I open up the document, and write until I run cold. Best thing being that no matter when I think of something, I can be writing a thousand words about it off the top of my head without needing to mess with power cables or move to computer. On the train? Open up my quantitative analysis spread sheet and start analysing figures. Can do it for ten minutes, or an hour.

It is by far the least intensive way to put together even very extensive (10,000+ word) documents. I've worked plenty on various laptops and PCs over the years, but my phone kicks the crap out of both for comfort and productivity. No more hunching over keyboards, no more squinting at monitors.

Best thing is you never have an excuse to not be working. My blackberry never leaves my side and so I have all my essays and research with me.

I know plenty of people who claim to be awesome on touch screen keyboard, and I'm sure that there are some user who can top my berry WPM, but its not that impressive if all you do is twitter posts. Physical keyboards are for the long haul.

I was just in the apple store with my buddy and we were searching for new cars on an ipad. To search for what we were looking for on the all touch screen it literally took us five times longer than had we just been using a keyboard. I think touchscreens are somewhat of a fad. As popular and fun as they look, i'll stick with my keys...and 9700.

I think because it took YOU guys that long, it's easy to think that. I'm betting I could compete against a non-touchscreen BB user and could either win or tie..it's all about getting the hang of it. I think there's more of a learning curve on the touchscreens, but once you get it, believe me, you can go very fast.

I tried out an iPad the other day at Best Buy and it was time consuming for me to type on the touchscreen, but I know from experience that all it would be is a matter of time for me to get fast to very fast on that thing.

Agreed. It took me a while to get the hang of the virtual keyboard on my 9530. But my buddy tried it (he's a 9700 user) and he hated it. Said its too slow. But I smoke him in messaging. Its all about preference and what you choose to get used to.

i wouldnt want a full touchscreen. i need that keyboard. it's much more convenient. i hope physical keyboarded phones stick around for a while.

I don't know if its arrogance or just good old fashion head in the sand. Typical RIM. Do you not have marketing people? Does no one in Waterloo pay attention to consumer sales data? Mike, you are either completely unqualified to run RIM, or you are the best IRL troll evar.

@Fresh and @Auction

It doesnt matter what YOU prefer! RIM is a business and they have a duty to their stockholders to produce numbers. They clearly have produced 2 touchscreens now, and not acknowledging the power of the consumer market is a stupid move.

Quote: "Worst cae, we'll carry on this conversation in a live Crackberry Podcast next week where plenty of booze is involved. That will be fun."

Sounds fun and interesting Bla1ze, can't wait to hear this one. Consider me signed up.

Is this guy on Meds or something? The iPhone is possibly the most popular gadget in history, and touchscreen phones aren't that popular?

I agree that in the business world (the real core of RIM's business)this could be true, but for the regular, everyday consumer? Touchscreens are the way to go.

I love my Blackberry, but Mike L. is an idiot and continues to prove himself as such.

RIM still tops the devices used list, and I'd be willing to guess that there is a similar number of blackberries (of all modern forms) to all generations of iPhone.

Many people I know with a 3GS owned a 3G before that, and I honestly don't know anyone who didn't upgrade. So, you need to take their sales figures with a punch of salt. If you only care about devices sold, then Nokia phones (of all flavours) are the most popular gadget of all time.

Apple has an immensely powerful PR team, and has spent a lot of money positioning their products as magical life enhancers to people who don't know jack about technology. Anyone remember the apple campaign about Macs being for 'the fun stuff' ? They neglected to mention you can't play any modern games on them because they weren't trying to sell to informed consumers, they are trying to sell a top end macbook or imac to someone who basically only needs netbook functionality (ie for 'the fun stuff' of web surfing, itunes and a word processor).

And its the same throughout the whole product line. A huge number of people who otherwise would have bought a dumbphone buy iPhones because they are hip, and just use twitter, facebook and dumbphone funtions, becuase that's really what the mythical 'consumer market' is. Uninformed consumers who follow trends and are willing to pay untold amounts to be part of whats cool. Thats why everyone and their granny wants a touch screen phone, not because they are any good, but because there is currently a trend for them.

I don't want to see blackberries be hip, ever. To the lovers, the reasons why you own one (or more) are obvious and don't need restating. To the rest, they'll never get it.

WOW, I think I finally found out that Mike L. has secretly joined CB and registered under the name of synthmole. They are both just about as clueless when it comes to what the public wants and where the RIM technology should go. What amazes me is that people continue to put this company in the black. Sooner or later one of two things will happen... RIM will drop or they will change their ways... I'm looking forward to the day that happens.

He seems like such a jackass its almost a suprise they've continued to be in business. But if this is his mindset our beloved blackberries are in serious danger. We need a replacement for him who doesn't live under a rock. Where do I apply?

Touch screens are the phones of the future and RIM really needs to step it up with the touch screens and that awful "would be great in 04" O.S. they have!

And you wonder why RIM continues to fall further and further behind in the smartphone marketplace...when the CEO is completely out of touch with what the public wants, their stocks will continue to plummet and deservedly so. As long as I've been a BlackBerry owner (5+ years and 7+ devices), that HTC Incredible is looking more and more incredible (so is Android as a whole).

Imagine the Iphone with a full side QWERTY. I agree with Mike that all touch devices will eventually begin to play second fiddle to side sliders. Its unfortunate that RIM had to be their usual arrogant selves and stick the traditional Berry QWERTY in a Pre style slider. That style of slider is just Fugly and unbalanced.

He isn't saying sliders are the only form factor either, giving people the choice is their intention whether its touchscreen-only, slider or any of the various qwerty options rim also have for people.

Many a blackberry user, myself included, head on over to the EVO 4g in June. I've been a loyal BB user for several years now and it's just time. I see innovation in so many other phones, yet RIM continues to rehash the same platform in "slightly" different packaging. It's. Just. Time.

although I won't go to Sprint and get that EVO phone, I agree with everything else you said. I'm sticking with Verizon and might be grabbing that Incredible.

I also won't be leaving Verizon, but your point is one I share. I love my Blackberry. I love my BBM. But RIM is falling behind fast. Look at the new Incredible. Pretty impressive. What's RIM answer? A Tour they now call a Bold with a trackpad?

I'll hang around a little longer RIM, I don't want to leave. But your making it very hard.

But I'm sorry. I'm able to do everything faster on my Storm 2 than when I had my curve 8310. In every way, it is far superior. And, my preference of course, trying out my friend's 9700 just wasn't the same. The Storm 2 is and excellent device and RIM's best phone yet.

Hearing this from the CEO of the company that makes the phone I'm loving so much is disheartening at best. I guess I can't expect much more support from RIM or an enhanced experience (better camera, longer lasting battery, opening up of apps potential). It is truly a shame. People, you just don't know what you're missing here.

Maybe the market share will wake him up and more Storms will be on the horizon. I don't know. I hope so or RIM may be the odd one out of the "musical chairs" that is the smartphone market.

The Storm2 is the best BB. I can type very quickly and accurately on it. I can't understand why people would buy any other BB. And, it was just flat out discouraging to read Lazaridis' remarks. He is way out of touch. If he speaks for the entire company we are in big trouble!

I agree. Verizon has a lot of bb users. A lot of rhem are my friends and they are all saying that they're going to dump their bb once iphone comes out on verizon.

Oh God. Not this stupid argument again from Verizon users. Have you noticed Verizon is always the last to get such things? ... Blackberry's and now possibly the iPhone (which in reality should go to Sprint's 4G, instead of Verizon's infants). I wonder why? (They suck) They're entirely two different phones with two entirely different uses and are user specific. Stop whining on crackberry and get a different phone and then whine on that phones website of how you wish you still had your blackberry. Iphone users and verizon infants are one in the same I guess. Snore.

I personally prefer the on screen keyboard because I find it easier to type on. it's a matter of personal preference. I am far more efficient on my S2 in landscape mode then i would be in, say, a curve.

It's just unbelievable that he would say this. When I'm out and about and whipping out the S2 to answer a call or text, people are usually awed at the S2. "Wow, what is that? That's that BlackBerry Storm 2 huh? Man, you can type fast on that thing" It's not me, its the S2. The feedback from SurePress is perfect. Once they see that I can do all the things their phone can do, they always walk away impressed. I'm talking about people with iPhones and Pres and Android OS's as well as others. I'm always getting great responses to the S2.

The thing that stops some people from getting it is Verizon. A lot of them are on Sprint or T-Mobile and Verizon is too expensive for their budget they say. iPhone users are all waiting on the new 4.0 OS.

Overall though, it comes down to personal preference. I just thought that the co-CEO of RIM would have more foresight in what is clearly, from my point of view at least, a GROWING trend, not a fad.

Oh boy mike your off your rocker bb kicks but touch screens are really popular not only that tablets are going to start to take off
Real soon netbooks are dead and not only that tablets have been in
Movies for years people luv what stars use...

I can understand the idea of defending your brand but with so much
Blatant popularity its not a good idea going against the grain
You end up looking dated.

"Lazaridis claims there is no market for tablets and that as smartphones are getting more powerful and more computer like, this by
extension would reduce the need for a tablet"

RIM smartphones aren't getting any more powerful. I say its getting left behind in the dust in terms of specs.

For me, my S2 Touch Screen is a love-hate relationship. I love the size of the screen. I enjoy working on Custom Homescreens. I love how Lock Tilt works on my S2 and its screen. I hate it when my S2 gets busy and will not honor my latest request in less that a pico-second. I had high hopes for better Voice entry, but Vlingo and Google Maps 4.0.1 leave a lot to be desired. I long for the future where I can just do thought entry like the Krell.

What an idiot...Tell me RIM is stubborn to change its way, that touch screens are not your cup of coffee, or even that maybe RIM can't produce a quality touch screen device to compete with what is out on the market at the present moment, BUT don't tell me that they are not popular at this point in time. That just sounds plain old ignorant, something that should not be expected from a CEO of a fortune 500 company.

More proof that RIM is clueless when it comes to the state of the industry. Anyone who thinks that OS6 will be some great coming, should think differently. RIM is so far out of it, that it will soon lose the consumer market all together.

I love my Blackberry, but I really loved the style of my LG Voyager.. A touchscreen on the front, opened up (folded open) for a qwerty keyboard and a second screen. Best of both worlds... The fact that it read my text messages to me was just an awesome side bonus!

I'm not thrilled with a touch screen. I prefer a keyboard, that's me. I know that people have their own preference and their reasons why. Maybe that is why there BB's that are out there for consumers that what they are looking for on their paticular needs in a BB be it touch or not.

I love my storm2. Its by far the best phone I've ever had. I couldn't go back to a blackberry with keys, the surepress technology on this is amazing. But RIM needs to step it up...I find my phone far more superior to my friends droids, but when I look over at them, I find myself envious over the resolution and speed. Not to much the vast amount of apps in the android market.

I've had blackberries for 4 years and 4 diffrent Blackberries, I'm now a happy iPhone owner and I have no intention of going back to blackberry anytime soon, your software sucks ! Your app store sucks ! Your media capabalities suck ! Awesome push email doesn't cut it anymore ! The web is going mobile and all your doing is going the way of PALM !

If iPhone is so great, you think you can leave these forums the same way you left BlackBerry?

Oh and on your way out, can I have your stuff?

I think people are taking this out of context.

Mike is saying that 'touch-only' phones and tablets aren't what the public wants. Majority of the public that is.

I have to agree with Mike.

What business person you know uses an iPhone? Working in the investment banking business, everyone I know has a BlackBerry and lives and breathes by their BlackBerry because of the ability to respond to secure e-mails with a QWERTY keyboard. When it comes down to approving a $250M wire for a purchase of an investment while you are on the golf course with your potential clients, you are not going to use an iPhone to do this. You are going to use your BlackBerry connected to your BES. This is the reality we live in.

We all know the iPad is all hype and there is one major flaw with this device: there is no physical keyboard. The average consumer is going to buy that $300 netbook that has a physical keyboard instead of paying 2x more for an Apple product that is 'touch-only'. This is very true.

Mike is referring to the fact that RIM is launching the BlackBerry Storm Slider 9800/9830 device which is going to offer best of both worlds. A large touch screen with a slide out QWERTY keyboard. Launching in Q42010.

LMAO!!! If that's his (Mike's) take on what's trending in mobile phone technology I suggest he take a GIANT step back from the consumer market because he hasn't a clue. I've defended Blackberry for years but no longer can I justify this platform or hardware over Android and Linux (iPhone will never be a consideration for me).

Touchscreens with large real estate are NOW, not a rehashed form factor with a portrait slider. It didn't work for Palm (despite it's nice WebOS) and it's not gonna work for RIM. For this shallow thinking, I have owned my last Blackberry. I'm giving my 9700 to my wife and it looks like the 800x480 slide-qwerty Nokia N900 (A tech geeks delight) will be my device of choice running on T-Mo's blazing 3G and soon HSDPA+. Is it perfect?? Not quite but almost. Way, waaay better than ANYTHING coming down the pipeline from Waterloo.

Thank you Blackberry but no thanks. I'm still waiting for the reasoning behind manufacturing a flagship device in Q1 of 2010 with an HSDPA of 3.6Mbps. The G1 of 2008 for Christ sakes had an HSDPA of 7.2Mbps. Can you say, "fallin', fallin', fallin', fallin'....".

So much nerd rage in this thread.

I like how everyone is just sitting back, thinking how they have it all figured out.

Please tell me this was taken out of context? It makes absolutely no sense. It is exactly what RIM gets flamed for...lack of vision and resting on their dated devices and os. Whether you love or hate sure press, at least it was an attempt to innovate. RIM tried to improve typing on touch screens. These comments show me that they don't feel like innovating anymore.

In my line of work firms are encouraging users to use their own smartphones. They are not handing out curves anymore. Especially in this economy. That mean consumers are making the decision what phone to buy. They are getting lured away. Now, I love bbm and push mail as much as the next guy, but RIMs hardware (I won't even get into the os) is a joke compared to the competition.

I am on verizon and they are releasing the htc incredible at the end of the month. It has a 1ghz snapdragon processor and a 8 megapixel camera and tons of memory. This will be released almost an entire month before RIM will have their new tour/bold 9650 on verizon, which is essentially the same tour from almost a year ago with wifi and a track pad. That's pathetic. I am tired of the "it's a business phone and that's what it's good at" rhetoric. That same "business" phone would run with multiple word docs open in docs to go and be super stable with the htc incredible's specs. Not to mention you may actually be able to store some apps on it if you chose to do so and you wouldn't have to reboot the phone all the time. RIM is starting to look stupid!

There seems to be a lot of hate toward the touchscreen. Personally i think everyone should get use to them and it's not because they are the most wonderful things on the planet it's simply because they allow your phone to be more versicle. I'm not saying this because of their input features it's simply that with larger touch screens as the main display it opens up the uses for your smart phone: E book reader, movies, streaming TV, and games and while all these things can be done on currently smaller screens that share there real estate with qwerty keyboards I don't think with phones such as the Iphone and the HTC HD2 that people will settle for smaller displays unless they absolutely have to or want to.

And this is the final nail in RIM's coffin for me. I love my Storm - but I won't be supporting a company as lazy and arrogant as RIM anymore.

I listened to the conference this afternoon and I don't recall the comment about "touch-only phones like the iPhone aren't that popular. Either I missed it (possible) or the message got misconstrued.

I listened to the conference today and thought it was great. After reading the original post and all the comments I couldn't beleive this was the message that someone got from it. Mike spoke well and gave some good insight leading to some future anouncements. I would like to see the full transcript though as I thought he dropped a name for the broswer.

touch screen or not, RIM needs to get their act together with the OS they have right now.

multiple reboots a day, severe memory limits, memory leaks, grossly out dated interface (sure it works, but we need some 'flair' as well!), and completely useless desktop software for the average consumer (my palm devices from back in 2001 had desktop software that let me work on tasks, memos, calendar, etc. - RIM tells me to "buy outlook from microsoft").

I don't understand how businesses can use RIM devices with the memory issues.. and consumers, want some dazzle as well as function!

Perhaps RIM should stick to hardware, and get a modified Android OS on these things!!

This information from Lazaridis is completely self-serving. It is similar to a Defense Attorney solemly describing why their client is innocent. It is all B.S.

I am not saying that the positions taken and expressed by Lazaridis are wrong. I am only saying that his expressing them is primarily to serve his own interests.

Frankly, any position taken by Lazarids is so biased that I give it no weight.

Do you think he's gonna support the iPad? And the marketability for it? Doubt it! He's gotta support his own products, and downplay the possibility of the competitions success.

Plus, RIM's a growing company so they're doing SOMETHING right......for now.

Well. Looks like someone misconstrued his statements by FAR. He didn't say anything like what we were told. This is a gross mistake! And horribly done on Crackberry no less! Here comes the lecture part: how can you misrepresent someone's statement like this, especially now, when RIM is getting blasted by its niche userbase on Crackberry? This kind of mistake is so badly timed. People's emotions are already high and they've grown impatient on just about everything here.

I want to be able to trust that the information I'm getting from Crackberry is true and accurate. Until now I have. I hope I don't have to rethink or second guess that in the future.

The sensible thing to do seems like it would be lock the original post with the rants based on incorrect info and then make a post with the correct comments and then people will probably still rant and whine as usual, but at least it will be in response to correct info.

We've all heard of verifying your sources. If CrackBerry wants to be taken seriously, some of the staff have to start actually working. This would be in contrast to being friends and have a great old time, while blogging some BlackBerry info when there's time. Spelling and grammar issues by some of the writers are inexcusable. Maybe time to re-think staffing. Kevin your site is great the content you & Mr. Johnston post is informative and a pleasure to read. I can't say the same about some of your other contributors.

I don't give a crap about the debate regarding touch screen or no touch screen. Either a well designed physical querty or a well designed virtual keyboard will work fine for me. Don't really care which. It's about the screen size, folks. I love my Blackberry in every way, except I want a larger screen. A physical slide-out querty will be fine, because it will give me the larger screen I want on my BlackBerry. Don't really care if that larger screen is touch or not. But I can tell you this ... as much as I love my BlackBerry Tour, my next phone will have something larger than a 2.4" screen on it ... even if I am forced to go non-BlackBerry. The Storm 2 is not an option for me, because I'm a Sprint customer and it's not offered. If the Palm Pre hardware wasn't so cheaply made, it's querty keypad so cramped, & its call-quality so poor compared to my Tour, I'd have no problem with that phone.

for the past 3 years i was the blackberry lover.. but when the HTC Legend came out i dump my bold 9000.. work with your OS RIM! its so boring!! and to be honest, the reason why i dont leave BB is only the BBM and push email.. if RIM change the BB UI i might back to BB ...

Well honestly I could not see the ceo of rim being so dated in a live speech good thing for the update on cb. Out of context makes More sense. Seriously there is enough room in the market for all And there is no reason why you can't have both kinds of devices qwerty and touch screen I can imagine in some applications a touch screen might be better and in others a qwerty is the only way to go

People are going to love both things because its taylored to how You use a device and in both cases the devices are being created by Leaders in the field. This is great for the consumer and we are benefiting by the competition positively. If innovation makes people's life better or easier it was worth the effort.

All I know is that my Storm absolutely sucks and so does RIM's OS and I can't wait to dump them for the HTC Incredible coming to Verizon this month. I'm sure that RIM will keep most of their business customers, but at this point I'd bet that more than half of the BB users are non-business and RIM will start losing those to companies that keep innovating and improving their products. It's bad enough that RIM doesn't know how to innovate beyond their original and now outdated design, they can't even successfully copy their competitors.

With some really nice Android phones coming out RIM will start losing market share and when the iPhone becomes available on other carriers, that will really send them on a downward spiral. And if you think RIM is too big and successful to take a nosedive, take a look at Motorola; it wasn't very long ago that they owned the cell phone market.

For the first time since discovering this site, my respect level for CB is dropping. Also, a made up quote isn't "taken out of context". It's simply made up, and it's irresponsible. A certain group who saw the first post won't see the update, and as such will think it's accurate.

I can understand the hard keyboard users thinking that most touchscreen devices are not as good for text input as their devices are.. However, when comparing to the iPhone, I think the field is very evenly matched. I've owned a few keyboard devices and none of them have ever come close to the speed and accuracy that my iPhone gives me. Idk if it's because I'm exceptionally good at typing on the iPhone or whatever, but I've never met anyone who can type faster than I can..

It is rather sad the way writers feel the need to run with a thought from other people rather than see what was actually said.

There's this constant idea that RIM just got lucky or that they don't know what their customers want. He's clearly saying there is a large segment of people that don't like typing on a touchscreen so the need for QWERTY keyboards is still important.

And his comments about tablets aren't out of touch either. It's a form factor that has been around for a decade and it still hasn't caught on with business or the public on a large scale. Even if Apple sells 6-7 million iPads, what is that in comparison to the 180 million laptops sold per year? No one knows where tablets will fit beyond the gadget realm as they lack the power of laptops and the convenience of smartphones.

RIM built a company from $50 million in revenue to $15 billion in a decade. It might suit some critics to take the time to ponder if they might know what they are doing. And the least I would expect from a site dedicated to the BlackBerry is that they would take the time to understand what Mr. Lazardis was actually saying instead of criticizing the man based on a third-party's understanding of his speech.

It's because they usually just care about traffic more than anything else...

That's why so many places run poorly operated survey results, etc, just for controversy.

where misinformation is posted and everyone believes it as "the Gospel". Now everyone wants to skewer Lazaridis for things he didn't even say. My point is, if it sounds totally outlandish, check your facts before you post.

I'm sure we'll get lots of comments about how we're not journalists, we're bloggers. The line is getting pretty blurred these days but common sense should rule the day.