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Want someone to build a BlackBerry 10 app? Try creativity in asking!

Over the years, I've seen Kevin do some crazy things but what I witnessed recently was likely one of the top antics I've seen from him in a while. Before I get into that though, I have a little story to share. It may be true, it might not but here it goes. A little background first though, my mother recently remarried and her new husband told me this story about how he gained a job at one of his...

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Wall Street Journal digging reveals very weak Q10 demand

Wall Street Journal digging reveals very weak Q10 demand

Someone who I find does a good job of digging into BlackBerry is Will Connors from the Wall Street Journal. He and colleague Thomas Gryata published a story yesterday highlighting the difficulties BlackBerry is having selling the Q10. I’ll be the first to admit I was expecting a much stronger launch. With so many older BlackBerry devices on the market I figured there would be millions of people...

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What if Cisco bought BlackBerry?

Cisco and BlackBerry

Ever since BlackBerry announced that they’re assessing strategic options, including (but not limited to) selling the company, everybody’s been talking about who would buy them. Of course we’re all rooting for BlackBerry and hope that it doesn’t come to an outright sale, but there are a lot of different ways the next few quarters could pan out. Patents could be bid on by a consortium of...

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Does Samsung think it can steal BlackBerry customers in emerging markets?

Does Samsung think it can steal BlackBerry customers in emerging markets?

If you’ve been following the CrackBerry news lately, you’ve surely seen the promotions Samsung has been running. BBM will be arriving on Android soon, and Samsung has taken the opportunity to tell people that Galaxy owners will soon be able to download the app. They make no mention of Android in their promotion, naturally. Why would they?  From their perspective it’s better to just attach the...

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"Hey Kevin, WHAT IF (insert company name here) buys BlackBerry?!"

"Hey Kevin, WHAT IF (insert company name here) buys BlackBerry?!"

Seriously. If I had a dollar for every time in the past two weeks I've been asked the questions, What if (insert company name here) buys BlackBerry?, Will BlackBerry die or will they live? and What's going to happen to BlackBerry?, I'd probably have enough money to buy an off-contract BlackBerry Z30 when it's released. Heck, these questions have even gone to the point of being beatboxed into...

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Does the BlackBerry NOC still have value for the consumer?

Does the BlackBerry NOC still have value for the consumer?

When BlackBerry was exploding onto consumer scene in the mid 2000s, a big part of this expansion came from BlackBerry Internet Service (BIS) capabilities, which were unique to the company. Specifically, BlackBerry had a Network Operating Center (NOC) that was connected directly to carrier networks, and the service architecture allowed them to help carriers sell feature-specific BlackBerry plans...

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Ten things we're looking forward to in BlackBerry 10.2

Ten things we're looking forward to in BlackBerry 10.2

51 weeks ago to the day, I published a story on CrackBerry titled Ten Things We're Looking Forward to in BlackBerry 10 so far. At that point in time, BlackBerry was doing a road show giving select members of the press and VIPs an early hands-on with the BlackBerry Z10 and BlackBerry Q10. Prior to that, the only real glimpse we had was of the canned demo build that was shown off on a Dev Alpha...

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A bit like a trip back in time - BlackBerry 9720 first impressions

A bit like a trip back in time - BlackBerry 9720 first impressions

At the time of writing this I've had my hands on the BlackBerry 9720 for nearly four days. We will have a full review of the new legacy device coming up in the very near future but in the meantime I just wanted to share my early thoughts on the 9720 and where I think it will have a place in the market.   It's been kind of odd going back to using BlackBerry 7 after nearly eight months with...

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Could we see a return of Mike Lazaridis if BlackBerry goes private?

Mike Lazaridis

Here’s something to think about just for fun today. With all the discussion of Prem Watsa potentially being involved with a privatization bid for BlackBerry, could this mean a return of Research In Motion founder and former Co-CEO, Mike Lazaridis? Watsa’s firm, Fairfax Financial, owns about 10% of the outstanding shares of BlackBerry. Lazaridis owns about 5.7% of the company. So let’s think...

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What is BlackBerry's patent portfolio worth?

What is BlackBerry's patent portfolio worth?

There's been a lot of talk lately about how much BlackBerry is worth, and though it ultimately depends on the buyer (or buyers, as the case may be), we're still inclined to guess how much the company is worth. In particular, it's seeming like BlackBerry's patent portfolio is going to be the juiciest asset of the company. At least one analyst thinks that the handset business is effectively...

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A private BlackBerry would help employee morale

BlackBerry People

Ever since news broke that BlackBerry met with Silver Lake Partners there has been a ton of speculation about BlackBerry going private. With Prem Watsa stepping down from his board position, this has only added fuel to the fire. If you recall, BlackBerry cited potential conflicts of interest between Watsa and the board given the special committee to explore “strategic alternatives”. Watsa is...

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What's BlackBerry doing to help get more apps on the platform?

What's BlackBerry doing to help get more apps on the platform?

A few days ago we covered a from the forums post outlining that the app ecosystem on BlackBerry was one of the key reasons for BlackBerry 10, and ultimately BlackBerry itself, not doing so well in the eyes of a lot of consumers. It sparked some pretty heavy conversation for and against the statements being made but I personally still believe it to be true. If there were more key apps onboard,...

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Talk Mobile 2013

We've wrapped up cloud week of Talk Mobile, and it's time to get the kind of stuff that the cloud lives for: numbers. As with previous weeks of Talk Mobile, we're running a survey so we can put together some of that data that we and the cloud simply adore. Week six of Talk Mobile 2013 was all about the cloud, how we use it, how it's scary, and our forecasts for the future of the...

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Under the Zeis Lens: Proof that ignorance isn't always bliss

Under the Zeis Lens: Proof that ignorance isn't always bliss

I have never claimed to be a "journalist" (I'm a blogger) but I've always done my best when it comes to reporting the news or forming opinions about products. Obviously I love BlackBerry and have no problem admitting it. I also am man enough to admit when I'm not pleased with something - be it an app, accessory, device or whatever.  Being a BlackBerry fan also doesn't mean that I'm anti-Apple or...

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From the Editor's Desk: I'm BACK... and we have a LOT to talk about

CrackBerry Live!

Hey CrackBerry Nation!! In case you missed me, I am BACK in the office today (was on vacation w/ my better half the past two weeks) and boy oh boy is there a LOT for us to catch up on and talk about. I was on a beach in Italy w/ spotty data when I saw the press release hit from BlackBerry regarding it would be looking at strategic alternatives for the company... less than ideal timing, but it...

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What to make of BlackBerry CEO’s compensation in the event of a change of control

Today I enjoyed reading an article from my friend Hugo Miller over at Bloomberg. He nicely summarizes the fact that Thorsten Heins stands to make $55.6 million in the event that BlackBerry is sold, and he is ousted as CEO. The details are all spelled out in a proxy filing from May. I’ve read through the Bloomberg story and the proxy filing.  The situation is fairly complex, and I haven’t...

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Lack of ecosystem is the top reason BlackBerry sales are low

Lack of ecosystem is the top reason BlackBerry sales are low

Over the past few days now there has been a ton of focus placed on 'the things BlackBerry has done wrong'. It seems everyone out there appears to know more about being a CEO than actual CEO's do, especially when the topic is BlackBerry. That's not necessarily a bad thing as it often times leads to some great discussion. One thread in the CrackBerry Forums that caught my attention, because I in...

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Roundup and commentary on news around BlackBerry’s strategic alternatives discussion

Early Monday morning things started off with a bang. BlackBerry announced that it’s board of directors had established a special committee to look at strategic alternatives including a possible sale of the company. I already discussed the matter briefly here and also here. I’ve been reading lots of the other news stories and watching some of the video clips. I notice that pretty much every...

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Scotiabank sees a sale or partnership as more likely than BlackBerry going private

Today I had a read through a report from Gus Papageorgiou from Scotiabank. On the back of the announcement of a special committee to explore strategic alternatives, he raised his target price on the stock. His new target is $14.20, up from $12.50 previously. In his report, he comments on the higher probability of a sale of the company or a strategic partnership versus a going private transaction...

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Quick take on the BlackBerry strategic alternatives announcement today

Quick take on the BlackBerry strategic alternatives announcement today

It has been over one year since BlackBerry hired JP Morgan and RBC Capital Markets to help it explore strategic alternatives such as finding a partner or licensing the BB10 operating system. What happened during that time?  I’m not sure. As far as I can tell nothing has happened, except both investment banks have likely been paid nice fees for being on the assignment. Was this strategic review...

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