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< >

Is Verizon snubbing BlackBerry 10?

No Snubbing BlackBerry 10 Big Red!
By Chris Umiastowski on 20 Apr 2012 11:18 am EDT
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We don't want to see any snubbing Big Red... we want BlackBerry 10 Phones for Sale!

Last night Verizon reported its most recent financial results. The prepared remarks didn't contain anything too interesting that I noticed. But the analyst Q&A session did bring up something I think RIM should be worrying about.

Analyst Phil Cusick from JP Morgan asked Verizon if there is anything they can do to control iPhone subsidies. Verizon's CFO, Francis Shammo answered him with the following quote, which we've taken from the Seeking Alpha transcript.

On the Apple iPhone, look, I think as I've said before, we look at every individual handset, we have a broad portfolio. We manage it by handset-by-handset and manage our subsidy and again, that's just one aspect of our P&L. And this is just a nature of this business that's grown from the beginning of the industry that we subsidize handsets. I do think though it is important that there is a third ecosystem that's brought into the mix here. And we are fully supportive of that with Microsoft, and as we said that we created the Android platform from beginning. And it is an incredible platform today that we helped to create. And we're looking to do the same thing with a third ecosystem. So that's how I think that we plan to go into the future here.

I think it's worrying to see Verizon, the carrier ultimately responsible for the success of Android, to be talking so clearly about plans to push Windows Phone. Not only have they said this, but they have said it in a context that directly implies there will be a third ecosystem. Not a third and a fourth. There was absolutely no mention of BlackBerry anywhere.

Perhaps it is too early to discuss BlackBerry 10. The alpha hardware isn't even in developer's hands yet. That happens the first week of May during BlackBerry World. But I think this Q&A session with Verizon does show very clearly that there is no time for waiting. There is no time for RIM to get it 100% perfect before launching. Sure, they have to deliver an awesome experience. And they have to make sure the important stuff is done right. But if they bring the cake to the party after everyone leaves ... you get the point.

This Verizon comment is yet another confirmation, to me, that everything is marketing. This is a phrase I picked up from the book "Rework", written by the founders of 37 signals. Every time RIM talks to its carrier partners, it is marketing. Having a huge carrier quoted like this (essentially snubbing you) is failure to DO marketing.

I think I'm going to start calling the CMO position the Chief Medical Officer. We're bleeding. We need help. Fast.

120 comments

Wolf35Nine

Once bb10 catches on, they will adjust their strategy. But yes, RIM needs to make some big changes and fast.

SixYearBlackberryUser

YES, it's all about MARKETING right NOW. I've said this over and over again that not many people know about the current BB devices! I pull out my Torch 9850 at work or out with friends at lunch and people always ask "what phone is that??". I don't know how many times I pull out my PlayBook and someone will ask "is that the new ipad?". Other than us here, who else knows about BlackBerry?? I see a Bold commercial maybe once a month and it's never on a major network or during primetime (US). And the commercial I see is horrible and tells the viewer nothing about the device they are advertising. I see countless commercials for all the other phones (iphone, droid, etc) night after night on TV advertised by the CARRIER.
If RIM wants to compete again you MUST partner up with the major carriers and have a MASSIVE marketing campaign now.
Lets see some print and TV advertising so others can LEARN about the BB current and future BB devices.

supraking

It's about more than marketing. It's about communication. It's about telling people what's great about a BlackBerry. It's about showing them that you can do MORE on a new BB than you can on an iPhone. Marketing has to get the right message across, and it isn't ("Be Bold" -- wtf?).

Kevin, there is no fourth ecosystem right now. When BB10 comes closer to fruition, they can talk. But Verizon isn't going to go out and say "we're going to work with BB some day in the future assuming they get their act together." Huh? No. I'm rooting for RIM, but they haven't proven themselves in the past, so nobody is going to support them until they prove themselves in the future.

silvanus55

I agree with you 100 percent. BB10 can come out with anything they want, but people still going to be looking for their apps. It an app world we live in today and that's people main gripe is apps. We all tired of hearing about apps. The truth is it's simplicity we looking for. We all have the things in life we don't want to live without,and when we can't have we not happy.

RIM must work better with third party developers first to get what works on their products and then create their own. I do understand it may be security issues. Verizon going with what is selling.

berry4life99

You wanna talk no recognition? I have the same probblem with my STORM 2! People don't recognize BlackBerry phones because they aren't pushed like they should be.

I remember seeing the commercial for the first Storm. It did what our Be Bold commercials should do: showcase the product and its functions. Other than that and AT&T's commercials for the Bold 9000, BlackBerry never really advertised its products.

So BB10 needs, not should, NEEDS to advertise the crap out of the new line like 3 months before they hit the stores with teaser commercials, and about 2 weeks before street date show the devices, THEIR CAPABILITIES, and their APPS so the common John and Jane Q. Public have an idea what BlackBerry is doing and give it another look.

Plazmic Flame

If you've seen Verizon's current "marketing push" for Windows Phone, then you would realize there is nothing to worry about.

I would like to think that they are stalling and waiting to see how BB10 pans out. WP7 has been around a long time, a freight train of devices have come out but yet Verizon hasn't picked them up. There can be a positive side to this.

cjterminator

I think till BB10 is not even announced or shown to the public, how can we expect Verizon to even put it in their plans in public. Once BB10 will be tangible and actually available to the public and carriers, its merits will speak for itself. No need to worry in advance.
All depends on how good BB10 will be and how well RIM can publicize its goodness.

ianchristie1972

It still can be considered a snubb because there is no mention of BlackBerry at all. They mention they can support a third eco-system and list iPhone, Android and Windows Phone but no mention of BlackBerry. It doesn't matter if they mention BB10 or not. I agree that BB10 hasn't been fully revealed but that doesn't mean you leave out BlackBerry.

Kevin Michaluk

It's supposed to! Lol. I intentionally did a bad photoshop job... ya know, considering BlackBerry 10 phones aren't even on sale... yet. :)

Happy Friday.

crozyBB

I think this is what I like the most about CrackBerry more than any other tech blog...The writers/editors will actually converse with the people reading and commenting on the articles...instead of saying something outrageous and not backing it up

Kevin Michaluk

It's true. CrackBerry is the best tech blog ever! That's cuz it's not really a job.. it's not really a blog... it's a calling. We love what we do. I wish I had more time available to reply to every comment and forum post and tweet. It's my dream... the darn to do list is soooo long though.

datta72

Lmao, Kevin you are truly one of a kind. Thanks for everything you do

crozyBB

Cheers to Kevin and everyone at CB!

berry4life99

You're representative of the ultimate geek dream: you make a living by talking about something you love with other people who love it. I wish I could join the CrackBerry team!

koool1

I really don't think Verizon will "snub" BB10. Let's face it folks, BB10 is vaporware, Windows phones are now and reality. Until I see a BB10 phone and a release date, I have my doubts about a 2012 release.

Fnord

I agree. Not only that, but Windows/Nokia have proven themselves on AT&T - I think Verizon just doesn't want to miss that boat.

BB10 has to hit the market, and then a decision can be made whether it warrants being called the 4th ecosystem (of course, this applies to the US only).

JackKennedy

I highly doubt that there could be a fourth ecosystem...RIM probably needs to compete directly with wp for the 3rd...this is their only priority...there's nothing else they can do....

having a 4th ecosystem means app developers need to develop on 4 platforms which is already quite ineffective even for larger developers, but this would also be impossible for many small developers (at least in any reasonable timely manner)...and we see a lot of dependency on small developers in the current market.

Shark635

My Verizon update is today, and being curious and conscientious I went to three different Verizon stores this past week to check out my options (I'm currently on a 9650 Bold). At each of the Verizon stores there were no Blackberry devices out on display, and when I asked to see a 9930 and a 9850 the store personnel had to grub around for a new, boxed unit, and then charge them up for me to "play" with them. In just one of the stores the person helping me was cheerful and enthused. In the other two I was treated almost disdainfully for wanting to stick with BB when there were so many 'droid and Apple 4S models to choose from instead.

If Blackberry is to survive, they must not only improve their marketing to the public and deliver a knockout BB-10 product - apps and all. They must also bring some serious weight to the carriers like Verizon. Without serious carrier support, online and at the retail stores, BB-10 could include an Extra Sensory Perception feature and still be a major sales flop.

cordial666

Let's hope the sign doesn't read 'BB10 phones on sale' from the get go.

willwnet

Carriers lose power to handset manufacturers if a specific handset/platform is too dominant. A third and fourth platform is desirable for carriers.

Mathrin

Anybody that's been by any Verizon store will notice that they are phasing out BlackBerry. I asked about one and was told they were informed to stop pushing those phones and focus on the Android platform as there is more profit for that OS.

3_M4N

Verizon stores are expected to sell a certain percentage of 4G phones. That's why they push the Android ones much more.

Mr.Willie

Basically they are saying that they will still carry Blackberries, but Blackberry is not a major player anymore. Yes, they will sell a handful, but it's not even a drop in the bucket compared to the iPhone. They are pushing WinMobile to those that detest Android, but don't want an iPhone. That was a part of my reason for picking a BB

Kevin Michaluk

It's definitely imperative that Verizon and/or AT&T (preferably both) give BlackBerry 10 a good backing and go when it's ready. Verizon definitely poured a lot into building Android, but I'm really hoping they give BlackBerry 10 a solid hero device launch. There's still a lot of BlackBerry fans in the USA who are just dying for some new next generation hardware. Verizon snubbing BlackBerry 10 would be a MAJOR disservice to their customer base.

Mr.Willie

But wasn't my 9810 a next generation device when I bought it three days after launch ?

Kevin Michaluk

Sure. There's always a next generation, unless there's a definite last generation (it is 2012 and the world might end...).  So people want the New Next Generation BB 10 phone.

SF71

Agreed Big Kev! I personally feel the loss will be more to their customer base than Blackberry as a whole. Now If AT&T dogs Blackberry along with Verizon, then we may have a problem. Considering they, both AT&T and Verizon, control a large piece of that MOBILE PIE. I don't really agree with the statement by Chris U. saying, "There is no time for RIM to get it 100% perfect before launching." Its been that thought process that has been a contributing factor to RIM's lack of success as of lately. 100% no, but they do need to be in the 90-95 percentile. Most of the phones they have released in the last few years have been less than OK. Lets face it, BB7 is not necessarily an excellent OS, but definitely better than a "Good Product". It WILL satisfy the true Blackberry fans until 10 hits the streets. RIM seems like they're on track for success once again.

On a different note, BIG KEV!!! I know you guys are busy working an all, but whats up with the podcast. I know there hasn't been much to report but I've gotten use to hearing from you guys every once in a while. Help a brother out soon. You guys are Rock Star!

Sean
Blackberry 9900 Fo-Life(in my Tupac voice)

sk8er_tor

Verizon sucks. First they drool over Android. Then, when they get the iPhone, they think it's the Messiah. Now it's Windows phone time.

scalemaster34

This isn't really a surprise is it?

Right now RIM does not look like it is capable of being the third ecosystem... or any ecosystem. A year from now that could easily change, but most business don't gamble on possibility very often.

PipeLady09

I have been with the same cellular company since 1989 and Verizon purchased it several years ago. I sure would hate to leave them just to find a Blackberry phone. When I bought my 9930 in October last year, I had to ask for it by name becaue there wasn't any Blackberry display whatsover. The salesman had to go in the back to get it for me. This is very disappointing.

purijagmohan

I think Carriers already Know what BB10 would be like.They must have shown them prototypes already. BB10 is dead before arrival.

Once mindshare lost u can't just pick it up at ur whim.It's amazing how the CO-CEOs destroyed the company.Amazing.

gregorylkelly

Are you trying to troll or does it just come naturally to you?

Windows Mobile was terrible 2 years ago. Customers completely gave up on it and it was the laughing stock of phones, even behind Palm (at least Palm had some dedicated followers). BlackBerry is currently WAY ahead of where Microsoft was with their user base when they switched ecosystems.

I highly doubt Verizon has seen anything of BB10 aside from what the PlayBook currently offers. They have people talking to RIM and know what is expected, but it is far too soon for them to commit either way with BB10. For now, it is not in their plans to promote or not to promote BB10. They need to wait until closer to launch to get a better feel for what they would be putting their weight behind.

Also, those CO-CEOs that destroyed the company are the ones that built the company. Don't forget that. Without them, there would have been no BlackBerry for them to damage.

One more thing, if Verizon doesn't carry the new BB10 phones, I will 100% be switching to another carrier. I have no dedication to Verizon at all. I will gladly switch for a BB10 phone.

purijagmohan

So founders built the company, means it gives them the right to destroy it.With logic like that you will get a lot of funds for entrepreneurship.

You already saw how hard it is for Windows Phone 7.5 to get traction.What makes u so positive about BB 10?

You think BB 10 is better than Windows Phone 7.5 and soon to be 8?

JackKennedy

agree

I think if RIM moved faster or did the switch to QNX earlier then the entire situation would be different but now Windows Phone is on its second generation os and RIM is not even on its 1st, it's going to be difficult. With the pace the modern technology goes, the 1st gen is almost always slightly a beta products, there are always some sort of glitches that they didn't foresee and smooths out in its later generations...

The market really has no need for 4 oses, especially one that does not offer the compatibility with other devices as the other 3.

Rootbrian

From OS 3, up to OS 7, sure there's small changes, but improvement sure spikes. Browser speed for rendering climbed up quickly, stability sure did too, speed followed.

May I suggest grabbing an OS 7 device and enjoying it? :D
At least you made sense this time, but think of the improvements over each prior build/major version.

Rootbrian

*you, *your
Sorry for correcting, but it only makes sense typing that way from a T9.

Joe257

You say Win Phone 7.5 can't buy a piece of the mobile pie, but you believe it will do better than BB10, which we can almost play with on the PlayBook? Yeah PlayBook OS is not BB10 but it is certainly as real as Win Phone 8.

Microsoft will have a hard time creating any interest in the mobile space because they are out of sync with the entire concept of smartphones. Nokia is fighting for survival in this space and they've put all their eggs in Microsoft basket. We will see how that plays out, but on we have not seen a huge shift towards Win Phones lately.

guerllamo7

Honestly, I think Microsoft has been unable to break into this market but they deserve a chance. BlackBerry also will get their chance.
It is up to each to come in on third or fourth place. May the best phone (and network) win.

I'm betting on BlackBerry but they are going to need to prove themselves. Security and data efficiency are not enough for consumers today.

For us BlackBerry lovers it has been a rough ride but keep the faith. I certainly believe in RIM and love their stuff. Sure, they stumbled a few times but I think this will be their big come back moment. I'm betting on BB10 being released this year.

I'm sticking with my Bold 9930 and Playbook regardless of what anyone says. I know what they do and I know my priorities. For me it IS the BEST smart phone out there today.

jamiemjennings

Personally I think you're reading too much into the comment about a third ecosystem, however nonetheless as you highlighted RIM has no time to waste. They cannot afford to launch BB10 wrong (as they did with Playbook) and they also cannot afford to delay the BB10 launch any further. Doing either will undoubtedly mean the end of RIM.

Stompy

This just echoes what is happening throughout most of North America - BlackBerry is being snubbed all over this continent. They're not even part of the conversation any more. Let's just hope RIM has learned their lesson and DOES NOT push a half-baked BB10 out the door too early just to try to play "me too". Because that surely didn't do them any good with the PlayBook.

JackKennedy

They really shouldn't have worked on the PlayBook at all, if they push all their effort into BB10 to begin with, maybe we would actually have a product by now

Someone must have realized that they were trouble at that time, and yet they still distract themselves with side projects....

Joe257

People do not recognize the genius in developing PlayBook and PlayBook OS. How does one develop a new ecosystem while maintaining an existing one? Few companies have ever managed to do this successfully. RIM is about to do what many said was impossible, and it looks like they will actually pull this off.

The PlayBook is helping to build the BB10 ecosystem while RIM maintains the current BB7 platform.

Yeah it was painful, and especially so since everyone had such high expectations, but folks, let's put things in perspective: companies much, much larger than RIM with many more resources have failed (many times, I might add) to succeed at what RIM is doing.

RIM has an awesome platform that will do them wonders in the mobile space, and they are about to transition into a true mobile computing company from a smartphone company -- a huge shift, but one that will yield new markets and new clientele.

JackKennedy

"How does one develop a new ecosystem while maintaining an existing one? Few companies have ever managed to do this successfully."

Isn't this not the point of it? And that's why nobody do it...because that will mean having its own platform competing with its own other platform?

"RIM is about to do what many said was impossible, and it looks like they will actually pull this off. "

What suggest they will actually pull it off...from the comments here and lack of publicity, it looks like they are not it pulling it off, at least in a sensible way and is instead sabotaging its own business.

All the playbook did was (a) sabotaged RIM's reputation, (b) showed consumers RIM's flaws and glitchy beta os, (c) scared away app developers by confusing the Hell out of them with inconsistency and late release of developer's tools.

While I'm always in support of public beta but charging money for public beta was stupid move and for the Playbook os, a lot of things should have been there even without responses from public beta. When Playbook was first released, the os was not even something the public would consider a beta product as it has no function of a tablet whatsoever, it was just a portable browser. Whatever could be done through bridging, I could do on my phone. Whoever thought of releasing Playbook was either insane or has no sense of rationality whatsoever.

BB_Bmore

All BlackBerry has to.do is make bb10. Wow! Omg! I need that. Now phone!!!
The rest will take care of itself. You can do it Rim!

jcbrunson

Money talks. VZW was all over BB when it was a moneymaker. VZW was all over Android when it was a moneymaker (still is, but was a one trick dog not too long ago). VZW is all over Ipone now since it is a moneymaker. They will be all over BB10 IF it is a moneymaker. That is the question for MS Phone as well - and right now, it is NOT a moneymaker.

Umm Yeah

Living and working in DC, I still see a VERY strong market for BB. There are growing numbers of iPhone and Android users but BB still has a strong base here, as has been born out in recent articles. The government is a BIG buyer of BBs.

Also, in DC, Verizon OWNS this market. While I do think Verizon wants to give WP8 phones a chance and sees them as a strong contender for the 3rd ecosystem, they won't abandon BB until their market dries up with big clients like federal employees and the like. I think Verizon views the BB as a niche product due to its dwindling marketshare but it's still a market they want to be in.

CHIP72

Just as clarification for everyone who doesn't live in the DC area, Verizon dominates here in part because federal government devices are on Verizon.

SaltySnack

Kevin I have a great deal of respect for you and the entire crackberry team however..... The statement "There is no time for RIM to get it 100% perfect before launching." I found surprising considering many users have been saying that part of Blackberry's problems stem from devices that are not yet ready. I for one think it would be hazardous to release bb10 prematurally. I am thinking more along the lines of when it gets into peoples hands creating a "WOW" factor. In an age of mass marketing and social media, I still say the best protions come from the users themselves.
Before you say how can it get into consumers hands if the carriers won't pick it up....carriers will pick it up, they may not showcase it the way we all would like but they will pick it up. If the consumer response is positive they may even change their minds!

newcollector

If marketing is such a high priority to Thorsten and to RIM, I would think there would have been an announcement of a CMO by now and since that hasn't happened, it needs to happen very, very soon.

the_sleuth

It's difficult to attract talented CMO when RIM's problems have been well publicized for 18 months now. Former Co-CEOs let things slide for too long with their strategic missteps. Now Heins is trying to right the ship "Costa Concordia". But it's a race against time. Over two years since RIM acquired QNX and there is still no smartphone release date with QNX DNA. Verizon appears to have made it's verdict. RIM's hope is AT&T and others.

mikelcal

I have a plan, and I hope I get some backing for it. The day BB 10 is announced, I will go to every Verizon store and tell them that I'm looking to switch companies, but only if they will carry BB10. And then do the same with AT&T and T-Mobile. There are not many Sprint stores, around where I live, but I'll hit them up too. If enough people do this, say 3 people in a row do so for each store, then it will show that we have interest in the platform.

Frank Castle

I can attest to this as Verizon was in our company (Fortune 100) company for the quarterly roadmap and they basically said they have nothing coming from Blackberry anytime soon and were pushing Android hard (which I stated we have zero interest in supporting corporate liable wise).

It's also telling that both Verizon and T-Mobile are doing nothing at Blackberry World this year. It's a week until the conference and I usually get a ton of vendor emails to attend events.

RIM better have some really solid stuff as a lot of peers I talk to in the corporate space are ready to move to another platform if RIM cannot get products to market quicker. We cant push almost a year old OS 7 devices when they see iPhone 4S and LTE Androids that blow Blackberry away hardware wise.

Not trying to be harsh as I've been a long time RIM backer and love their product (from an admin and user) but this is it, this conference will seal their fate.

4ron

Why can't RIM run some "teaser" ads for BlackBerry 10? Whet the market's appetite and build anticipation and confidence. It doesn't take a marketing genius to figure that out.

Umm Yeah

Because then NO ONE would buy the existing stock of BB7 phones and the carriers would be furious. If the BB10 gets pushed back further, that means more declining numbers for RIM and worsening carrier relations.

Darlaten

Umm, no one is rushing out to buy BB7 phones either. Perhaps the exception being people who are not keeping up with BB and dont know that BB10 is on the horizon.

But, for example, many of the tech shows in Vancouver have, over the past 6 months, been actively telling people to hold off buying a BB7 phone given how obselete it is and just to wait until BB10 comes out.

Maddog24g

Verizon and the other carriers will sell whatever makes them money. As we saw with the iphone when Verizon initially said no back in the day, if BB10 is a hit for other carriers all the carriers will show an interest. Money talks. Unless they have an exclusive agreement with one platform, they don't care which platform is on top so long as handsets are available, they make money, and the subsidies and associated costs don't kill their bottom line. Sprint is going broke quicker thanks to the cost of selling an iphone.

Why would they turn down a good selling product (if BB10 ends up being a solid product) if it can help them to make money? I would think that the carriers are not exactly thrilled about how much they have to pay to be able to sell iphone, how much they have to spend on marketing top of the line android phones that are only top of the line for 2-3 months before something else comes along and how much they have to spend expanding their networks to handle the data usage of these devices.

bldshd

I been with Verizon for a long time now, my first BlackBerry was on Verizon, but if they stop supporting BlackBerry, I will have no problem not continuing to support them! I love Verizon, but I happen to love BlackBerry more

poppingman

I'm in the same situation and while I prefer to stay with Verizon I would consider switching if they choose to not support BB. Not going to worry about it at this point since I recently upgraded and am under contract. That and things likely will change if BB10 is all that we hope it will be.

Ebscer

Short term I really don't see why Verizon would be expected to be backing BB10. Seeing as it isn't actually available for sale and all...

Come release, it is important for BB10 to have a large display inside every Verizon store, but a week prior to them going on sale, I don't expect Verizon to even acknowledge that any phones will be coming out in the future. Verizon wants to sell phones today (and then another one tomorrow). Q4 is still a long ways off for them...

Joe257

Yes, I do not like the tone of VRZN since they're beating their chest how they helped create the Android ecosystem in spite of Apple and RIM, who favoured working with AT&T on their iPhone and Torch products, respectively. It is what it is, but VRZN cannot take credit for Android's success.

VRZN certainly pushed it, as everyone else is doing because it is a big cash cow: disposable phones designed to shatter easily, increased sales of carrier insurance plans, and lots of leading edge specs to entice buyers. The platform is plagued with generally poor software integration, low hardware reliability, and inconsistent results from device to device, especially across some of the hardware vendors.

There is little vision with the platform. Many new Android devices are still running OS 2.3, only tablets are running 3.0, few devices are running 4.0, which is 6 months old, almost as old as BB7.

gravymonster

It's all about here an now. How can anyone expect Verizon to make plans to sell BlackBerrys when RIM doesn't have any to sell. Microsoft has phones for sale. Simple as that.

clvrbas

VZW doesn't want to support Windows Phone until it has LTE which is only a few phones out now. I think if Windows Phone becomes their third player they will wait for the Apollo update, which I believe is slated for October, if BB10 is ready before then and RIM can do a damn good job at marketing how BB10 will be a win for VZW they can take that third spot and push WP into 4th. Windows phone is a nice OS but sytruggling to gain traction, RIM needs to strike while the iron is hot before its too late and they loose that chance.

I also worry about AT&T adopting it timely, due to how long it took for the 9900.

travaz

I like VZW and have been with them for 9 years. I like my 9930 and will get BB10 when it drops. If BB10 is to have any chance with VZW it has to be LTE. No LTE = No VZW

cscott44

I think there is a general tend in the media not to mention anything Blackberry. I have noticed that in most articles Androids, Iphones and even Windows phones or tablets will be mentioned in the discussion but not one word pro or con about a blackberry.
The most recent instantce was this morning reading a article on possibilty of 7in Ipdad. Not one word on Blackberry being a potential competitior. Strange

MidnightSociety

Verizon is my carrier. When I 1st read this article, i took it as a snub against RIM. Until RIM provides a BB10 device in the wild no one will consider it to be real. Vaporware.

Lets hope during BlackBerry World we have the following happen:

1.) a display of a working BB10 device
2.) a CMO is announced

Once these two low hanging fruits are addressed, RIM can obtain some momentum.

9930 & 64GB Owner

PostMortem

I'm not sure what you mean by snubbing, but Verizon cant afford to not sell BB10 when it comes out. I don't think they will promote it, but they will sell them or they will loose what BB userbase they currently have. I don't have a problem leaving Verizon if they don't carry BB10. Of course my 6 Family members will be coming with me too.

There are too many "families" that love their blackberry to leave it just to stay with Verizon. I personally know of 2 other families that have their members on BB because of the way BB keeps them connected. Now I can't speak for them, but i doubt that they're more 'loyal' to Verizon than they are to their BlackBerry.

I for one already have a BB on Verizon 9550 and one on AT&T, so i know I certainly don't care if I have to leave Verizon. I would prefer not to, but that doesn't mean I won't.

pushfan

I noticed starting about 3 years ago the local Verizon stores did everything they could to steer me away from BB towards Android. Even to the point of not having any BB on display or charged to fondle. Started with the Storms I think. They got tired of replacing them. Last time did speed comparison test to demonstrate the internal speed of Android apps opening. They were tempting but lacked the ability to sync with Outlook which was a deal breaker for me. Now putting more effort into sync than reasonable with my 9930. Of course there was the BB bridge to the PB. Like a fool I bought a PB based on promises of things to come. I can understand not wanting to get excited about new promises.

FreeJACLive

I saw Kevin on CBC's Doc Zone last night. Crackberry.com was featured, I think the episode was called digital dummies, or something like that. It was amazing to see all the people on camera typing away on their BBs. Man times have changed and so quickly. The 3rd echo system comment was also mentioned on the Windows Weekly podcast for this week. It is truly sad to see RIM pushed aside so quickly. It is now like they are almost starting all over again from 4th place. :(

jrohland

There will be room for RIM. Apple is about to go over the cliff. I know 5 people who just got or are about to get mobiles. Not a single one has any interest in Apple. Yes they are selling but, when they failed to deliver iP5, all the tech people I know went Android. I think it will be Android, WP and RIM in 3 years. Of course, RIM might get bought and BlackBerry will be no more.

romanh99

I just finished reading that book "Rework" amazing book! Big Red better sell BB10 or im out!

yanicmb

why are you guys upset? arnt you used to rim not being mentioned anywhere if a popular app or game is made, its only on android, apple or windows phone so nothing surprises me anymore

RandomSVX

"...we said that we created the Android platform from beginning. And it is an incredible platform today that we helped to create. "

This is a big load burning on the front porch of T-Mobile. The first android phone, the Nexus, was only on T-Mobile at launch. Yes verizon and sprint joined not to long after but they didn't start it. Plus for the first like year T-Mobile had more android phones than the others. Go ahead verizon. Lose your BB people. Be stupid and go with Microsoft. It's not like they've only had a few unsuccessful phones the past few years.

Skeevecr

I think they are probably just talking about the big push that they gave to their droid-rebranding of android rather than android itself as they certainly didn't contribute to its growth in any other countries that generally want nothing to do with cdma.

JtothaR

The first Android phone was the HTC G1 and was launched in 2008. In fact, I worked for T-Mobile Corporate at the time. The Nexus wasn't launched until Jan. 2010. I remember it well, since I ordered it on launch day for $530. Sold it a year later for $475 on eBay.

anthogag

IMO right now RIM is not 'stable'. It will be when they launch the new phone and everything comes together.

Carriers are much better-off with more than 3 alternatives for customers, they surerly know this.

morganplus8

I see many of us are concerned about this article snubbing RIM but I don't see it that way, they are promoting products in hand and not venturing out to new OS systems. If BB 10 creates a huge buzz, you will only hear about RIM and no one else. Consumers are fickle that way. AAPL stock will drop like a stone and RIM stock will soar.

Marketing is key here but a block buster product will trump everything else. They could hook up with Amazon and/or sell the best phone directly to the consumer, and, they in turn can go to their favourite provider. This is the way the industry is heading anyway.

A slick phone with one or two special options/features and they are away to the races and we'll all soon forget about this bump in the road. As for apps, they need the top ten apps and all of the rest will be fine for 99% of consumers.

blackberryto

I think this is consistent with the theme in the US when it comes to Blackberry, and so I don't think it becomes any more important because it comes from a carrier. If anything, I think it emphasizes the point that RIM needs to make the carriers less important in this equation - they are in a position to do that like no one else is with their NOC infrastructure. As far as Microsoft, in many ways I see the Lumia as Palm Pre Part Two (even though the tech blogs like to make RIM sound like Palm). Sure it has gotten a bunch of buzz, but in reality probably even less so than the Palm Pre did. And like the Palm Pre, the Lumia has had some technical problems out of the gate. But more importantly, although the initial sales will probably be decent, they will fall well short of expectations. If Nokia thought otherwise, they would not have provided poor guidance for the next few quarters. The problem is a lacklustre launch will mean very little follow-through and little excitement from the carriers to jump on board. So sure Verizon is doing the corporate thing and playing nice with Microsoft, but that will mean very little 6 months from now if the Lumia has performed lackluster with AT&T and RIM has built up the buzz properly towards the BB10 launch.

anthogag

Verizon didn't mention BlackBerry because everyone is waiting for BB10 to launch.

Carriers will be happy to have 4.

RevyRah

Verizon has been subbing BlackBerry for years now. After they stated that they weren't willing to pick up the Storm 3 (Odin refresh) , despite having all the same features as the Torch 9800 (sans the physical kb), I left Verizon after 10 years with them, jumped to at&t, picked up the 9800, and have actually had far better service all across the board.

It's to be expected from Verizon. They care about the dollars coming in, and data compression is not a carrier friendly concept.

joski

I am sick of American bullshit, and constant yammering about marketing. Eat an ick-day.

NaijaBerry

At some point we will have to come to terms with the fact that this is business and verizon or any other will go in which ever direction the popular wind blows. As much as i'm a blackberry fan, popular demand rules the roost. I just seriously hope that RIM stays alive! Pretty good photoshopping Kevin

Jaredius

Who cares if one of the several carriers doesn't support RIM? I never liked Verizon anyway. They nickel and dime customers and their service isn't any worse than any other carrier...they suck just as much. However, they will suck more if they discontinue carrying Blackberry.

depscribe

Perhaps they simply cannot wait until 2019, which, based on the relationship between RIM's promised release dates and its actual release dates, is when we'll see BB 10.

greatwiseone

Well, how can you expect Verizon to talk about something that hasn't even launched yet? It'll be interesting to see what the carriers say once BB10 is launched though....

nextlevel88

"…and as we said that we created the Android platform from beginning."

I didn't know all those Verizon sales reps could code so well. I bet that comes as a surprise to Google, Samsung, and the thousands of apps developers that actually created Android. I know Verizon was instrumental in Android's success, but "created from the beginning"? Wasn't the first Google-powered phone exclusive to T-Mobile? Sheesh, the ego…

bigbmc26

+100 "Wasn't the first Google-powered phone exclusive to T-Mobile? Sheesh, the ego…"

pmccartney

I'm glad there are 100's of other global carrier's supporting the other 6.3 billion people around the world. I'm sure many of them will not have an issue with selling/subsidizing/supporting BB10 devices.

ChrisInSD

I CANNOT believe you wrote this: "There is no time for RIM to get it 100% perfect before launching." -- after Storm, after PlayBook?? This company needs to get its a$$ in gear, but what there is "no time" for is a disasterous product launch that produces a phone that has the feature equivalent of yesterday's iPhone... If they do that--again--then "time's up" on RIM and the BlackBerry smartphone.

coolaide

Rim needs to Pick a fight.Talk some shit to apple. They need to go all in and get everyone wondering what cards there holding. They need to leak something that wows everyone and scares the other makers. This is do or die time for rim so why hold back. They should blow every extra dime they have on marketing and getting people interested in bb10. They need to crash meeting they wasnt invited to and say hey, why didnt you call me. Come on Rim, grow a pair. We are tired on holding you up. Stand up dammit. /endrant

travaz

Perfectly stated. It is what they need to do. Get cocky let them know that the carriers need BB10 not the other way around. Kick some a$$

pblakeney

One of the things I did when working with engineering to introduce new instrumentation in the industry we serviced was to invite our “Key” customer in to see what we were doing and solicit their input. We knew the industry and showed them where we were going and they had the opportunity to give suggestions or give their nod of approval about our direction. This assured not only their buy-in but future customer base and industry influence.

Maybe Thorsten should meet with Francis Shammo and allow for product input or to see where RIM is with the development of BB10. This may not result in any immediate message or correction but would at least stave off any hint of VZ dropping or no longer pushing BB. High End Management talking with customer High End Management especially when CEO changes have taken place never hurt to make sure the message is not lost and the mission and vision remains clear.

For those VZ clients like me would not like or want to be forced into making a platform change due to non-support or lose of product. Also, partnering with VZ in a new “Marketing Blitz” with the current models and showing what they can do would be a nice start. At least something to get out to the US market!!!!! I own a 9850 and have yet to see ANYTHING in the way of a commercial showing the attributes of the phone and what it can do. Not even showing how you can “Bridge” with the Playbook or use the “Remote” feature. Where is RIM with any kind of model push in support of what is in user’s hands???? When I sit in airport lounges the only Playbook I see is the one I am using!!! Sad…very…very..sad…

There is a GREAT little book called “Who Moved My Cheese” by Dr. Spencer Johnson. Great read on how we can deal with change whether in life or work.

Skeevecr

If Rim are working closely with any North American carrier, the odds are that it is more likely to be AT&T rather than VZW because they have shown far more interest in Blackberry and more importantly, interest in promoting Blackberry in adverts as shown by first the 9800 and then the 9810 (and 9900?) whereas VZW has been all about it's Droid-branding of android for quite some time now.

Beyond the above reasons, phones with hspa+/lte will also be relevant outside north america unlike cdma/lte models that while still a large market, are just a sizable niche on a global scale especially when VZW's focus is still going to mostly be on android and iphone anyway.

br14

"Maybe Thorsten should meet with Francis Shammo and allow for product input or to see where RIM is with the development of BB10"

What makes you think they haven't?

VZ makes more money from Android - no surprise they're Android focussed. Let's see what happens if Oracle wins its case against Google.

And RIM has a BlackBerry channel on YouTube with the kind of video you mention. There are several on the 9850.

pblakeney

Just my comments as I don't know they have or have not met.... The merits of doing so can reep positive benifits. I have not seen 9850 commercials on main stream TV in my area and have not followed Blackberry on YouTube.

Maxey05

I don't think it really matters what Verizon thinks. The best phones will sell no matter how great the marketing is. BlackBerry has been around long enough for people to know about it. BlackBerry 10 is RIM's last hope.. So they better give it their all and come out with the best!

Coffeecat

I think that the brief statement is being over-analyzed. BB10 is not currently available, no-one has really seen it therefore it would be pure speculation for CFO to comment on it.

br14

You're almost a year too late Chris. Verizons CEO said exactly the same thing last year.

Do you really believe RIM"s sales in the US have suffered because of a poor product line? When the 9900 is at least as good for 95% of consumers than any Android.

Verizon has been pushing people toward Android because that's where the money is.

Carriers control the cell phone market. Always have and always will as long as we need cell towers.

TBone4eva

RIM had Verizon in their pockets and they let them get away buy giving them the Storm as the answer to the iPhone. So, it should not surprise you Chris and Kevin that Verizon isn't exactly kissing RIM's feet. That's why they pushed Android so hard to begin with so they could counter AT&T's iPhone.

Also if you think Verizon is bad, AT&T is worse. They waited months after OS7 devices launched before they finally sold them. Bringing the cake to the party before everyone leaves is worthless if they have already eaten someone else's cake at the party. At best some people might take some slices home with them, but rest of the cake is going to sit on the table uneaten.

br14

"by giving them the Storm"

From what I heard, RIM were pushed into giving Verizon the Storm before they'd completed testing. THat's why it seemed so half baked.

Verizon were losing customers to the iPhone and needed a touch screen device to compete for the end of year sales program.

Android devices use far more data than BlackBerrys, and cost less.

Is anyone really naieve enough to think that carriers do what is advantageous for the customer? They do what is best for them. i.e. what makes them the most money. Why would we expect anything else? (Including when to launch a device for maximum revenue).

AT&T would never have accepted Apples draconian conditions for selling the iPhone if they weren't losing market share to Verizon for example.

And BlackBerrys will be "cool" again with the carriers as soon as they generate more revenue for the carriers.

That could happen sooner than the release of BB10 if Google loses its case with Oracle and Samsung etc end up with license fees to pay for each Android device ever made.

BitPusher2600

I think this is misdirected paranoia Chris. Consider that Verizon has been carrying BlackBerrys for quite a while. Secondly, WP is the platform commonly referred to as the "third ecosystem" in a lot of mainstream tech talk. BlackBerry is failing in the consumer market, this is why BB is somewhere below the catchphrase "the third ecosystem" in generalized tech talk no? Finally, I really believe this whole conversation, at the tech talk level (not the sheer financial aspect) was geared towards consumer stuff. I don't believe Verizon ever really calls their BlackBerry devices consumer devices, but label them strictly "business tools." Because of this, they don't include BB as an "ecosystem", they only give that recognition to the others.

Think about the third point I just made. I've been with VZ for a long time. They don't treat BB as an average consumer device, they consider it a specialized tool geared towards a very specific breed of buyer, and as we all know, in the last couple years, their sales staff don't even give it that treatment anymore.

Long opinion short, they've been carrying BB a long time, and I disbelieve that they'll quit keeping a few BBs around. Still, the only 100% guaranteed fact; if they did ever quit selling BB, they could kiss me goodbye.

lnichols

But Jim B always said they had great carrier relationships! I guess someone should have told the carriers that. RIM needs a product that people want, and want in demand, and that doesn't cost the carriers $5 per month per person that uses that phone. Get BB10 out RIM and ditch the BIS costs for BB10 and higher devices. They are not pushing your gear because you are eating into the carriers bottom line now and Android does not.

derrickps3

i like how they deleted my comment about the pic being .........

G-bone

Stay Calm.
Be Bold.
It doesn't matter who has the "third ecosystem " when BlackBerry X
is #1.
I feel certain that these things are being addressed .
We should bombard Verizon with emails and texts,tweets, etc.
Seriously.
Stay Frosty.

uyi2g

I think you are jumping the gun Chris, RIM is re launching itself and they are not out yet. BB10 does not exist... Not yet anyway and when they launch, RIM will be playing catch up. I see rough road ahead but I think there is enough room for every good player, RIM just needs to launch a good product.

Don't forget the smart phone market is going to quadruple in the next few years.

dfb8085

We all can sit here and say Rim needs to do this and that. The bottom line is that I would hope that these multi millionaire's that Rim employs to make these decisions have the intelligence to do the right things going forward. having said that we all know that the future of Rim hinges on BB10. The ball is in Rims court and they got one shot left at the buzzer...Is it good or does it hit the rim and bounce out? Only time will tell. I am so glad that my lively hood does not depend on whether Rim succeeds or not. To be honest I am fast approaching the point where I am growing mighty tired of the wait and see mentality. I am ready for something new and better and hope I don't make a rash decision before the end of the year.

stormsurvivor

A great deal of the BlackBerry dismay was obvious at the C.E.S. in January, 2011. Verizon announced four LTE devices to be released a short time after the show, all of them Android.
RIM's answer to the Storm series was to introduce a 3G plastic screen Torch measuring 3.7" Where was the "innovation" considering Android had a multitude of 4.3" screens? Unfounded! Specs on screen resolution, camera Mp, ram memory, processors, app selection, etc., were running a bad race way behind the competition. To release the Bold without Auto Focus didn't really excite the buying public. The aforementioned are reasons they disappeared from display at Verizon stores.

If BB10 tative is released with more bugs, feature deficiency, and a press announcement such as email in 60 days (PlayBook fame), the only place welcoming BB will be Toys R' Us, displaying them right next to the Leap Frog devices......

marcels81

Why do they need to launch BB10? Why can´t they just adopt Android or WP 7.5 or WP 8?
Once Windows 8 and WP8 launches, Microsoft will be the 3rd player.
The way RIM is going is strongly reminding me about Atari and Commodore Amiga, those 2 companys where also leading in certain fields (Music, Video editting, games...) but they just got lost in the mass of Windows PCs.
It´s idiotic to burn down money for a system no one needs! What is BB10 supposed to do what Iphone, Android or WP8 can´t do? Magic tricks? RIM should join one eco system and play out the strengths they have inside this eco system.

marcels81

Why did RIM stop Blackberry Connect? They could be present on all platforms by now, serving customers which would never buy a Blackberry but still wanting to use Blackberry services.
And why don´t they launch BBM on other platforms? BBM could have been whatsapp. Just charge like 5 Dollars a year for BBM on other platforms ant there would be a bunch of people paying and using it.
What is RIM going to do if the big carries arround the globe shut down BIS? Most carriers charge extra for BIS services. Why would someone want to pay extra when theres an Iphone, Android...... where you can just use any sim card with a normal data plan.

qbnkelt

This would simply mean I would ditch VZW and stay with AT&T only.
They've been ignoring BB for quite a while. It's clear now that it was intentional, not just reps voicing a preference.

marcels81

Boeing is going to produce a super secure Android device, this could also be done by RIM. It´s just crazy how they run in the wrong direction. Why not using a save haven (Android or WP or even both) and then develop whatever system they want to on the side?

n8ter#AC

RIM doesn't have an ecosystem, so yes there are 3.

CHIP72

Frankly, I'd be very surprised if Verizon pushes BB 10 OS hard when it comes out; VZW has NEVER pushed platforms until they started getting established (even with Android that was true). IMO, it is much more likely that AT&T will support BB 10 OS smartphones from the get-go, assuming they are very good products.

ajamu06

Remember, RIM technically snubbed Verizon first. After the Storm 2, there has been no significant Verizon Blackberry, so this kind of makes sense. Blackberry focused on AT&T and Sprint with the Bold and Torch series, so I can see Verizon being a little angry.

Chango_BB

It may sound a little conspiracy theory from myself but I think Att, Verizon, Google and Apple want the market to have a two horse race. Is good for them but at the same time I believe that there has to be something illegal to it. I think this way because in an industry were there are a few major suppliers or duopoly like each of these have in their respective industries they can set the bar so high and they have so much control over each other that they can set prices and determine who is left to play and who is not. For Apple and Google, Microsoft represent a smaller threat that BlackBerry Just because of the market share each has. Maybe or maybe not the three are conspiring against RIM, because for them that means that they divide the whole market between a few like Apple did with the publishing companies. These companies have been accused before of doing just that. Maybe I am a little off, but I have always believe that there has to be some truth to it.

Bolderholder

It's not the apps per se', nor is it the devices. It's what the apps and devices enable carriers to do...which is to generate revenues from subscriptions and data plans for carriers.

Let's face it, iPhone and Android users love to consume data thru the thousands of apps....they eat up time, entertain and help manage social media. To support that need, they need a data plan....which therein lies my point. The TYPE of consumers that needs that much uncompressed bandwidth is using an iPhone and Android. Carriers love that because it impacts their revenue stream positively which is right now, the golden goose.

BB users on the other hand are a different demographic altogether - more sophisticated, professionals, generally more mature than iPhone users, uninterested with idiotic time waster apps that don't add value to their day. So with a customer base which doesn't require as much bandwidth or drive apps sales to generate more bandwidth requirements, it doesn't take a rocket surgeon to figure out why carriers are not happy with RIM.

Playbook is the same deal. Why get an extra data plan when people can bridge? Mr. AT&T and the Vorizons out there see this as a negative to generate revenues.

brinklej

Verizon was once very good to blackberry, does anybody remember that device that blew in called a STORM that turned out to be a nothing more than a SHOWER not a storm. Vzw pushed that phone very hard trying to find another brand and phone to counter the iphone if I remember correctly. I think the phone sold well at first but a lot of people soon found out the BB shipped the phone with a OS that wasn't ready for prime time and had all kinds of issues. So from a company looking to find another brand to push it think the storm is why Vzw is putting windows phone ahead of BB because VZW doesn't want to get burned again with another carrier exclusive device that can't live up to the hype.

Liquid_Revolver

Verizon had to deal with the Storm...lol

Cased closed end of story..anyone who had to deal with that brick of a phone should be able to ban RIM forever.

RIP RIM....