“Former Research In Motion co-chief executive Jim Balsillie sought to reinvent the BlackBerry smartphone maker with a radical shift in strategy before he stepped down, two sources with knowledge of his plans said,” Alastair Sharp reports for Reuters.

“Balsillie hoped to allow major wireless companies in North America and Europe to provide service for non-BlackBerry devices routed through RIM’s proprietary network, a major break with the BlackBerry-only strategy pursued by RIM since its inception,” Sharp reports. “The plan would have let the carriers use the RIM network to offer inexpensive data plans, limited to social media and instant messaging, to entice low-tier customers to upgrade from no-frills phones to smartphones.”

Sharp reports, “But the talks with carriers led to discord at the highest levels of the troubled Canadian company, and Balsillie resigned as a director soon after he stepped down as co-CEO. His former partner at the helm, Mike Lazaridis, still has an active role.”

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