RIM half-CEO doesn’t see threat from Apple’s iPhone

“The recent launch of Apple’s iPhone does not pose a threat to Research In Motion Ltd.’s consumer-geared BlackBerry Pearl and simply marks the entry of yet another competitor into the smartphone market, RIM’s co-chief executive said in an interview,” Wojtek Dabrowski reports for Reuters.

Dabrowski reports, “‘It’s kind of one more entrant into an already very busy space with lots of choice for consumers,’ Jim Balsillie said of Apple. ‘But in terms of a sort of a sea-change for BlackBerry, I would think that’s overstating it.'”

“Balsillie said the iPhone’s launch validates the thinking that multimedia features such as music should be expected in cellphones,” Dabrowski reports. “But while the Pearl received great response, some analysts questioned Apple’s decision to price its smartphone at a relatively steep $499 for the 4-gigabyte model. Cost has been a key obstacle in turning regular cellphone users into users of the more expensive handheld devices. The Pearl now sells at T-Mobile for $149.99.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: There’s a reason why Balsillie needs a helper to be CEO of a company with a market value that’s but a third of Apple’s. There’s also a reason why Steve Jobs excelled as the sole CEO of not only Apple, but also of Pixar for years.

We’ll file Balsillie’s myopic comments away for future use; you know, for the day RIM announces restructuring, upon Balsillie’s announcement that he’s leaving RIM to “spend more time with his family,” when RIM transitions into an iPhone accessory-maker, that sort of thing.

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Rogers to offer Apple iPhone exclusively in Canada – January 25, 2007
FUD Alert: Apple iPhone ‘isn’t very practical’ and a ‘security risk’ for business – January 24, 2007
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RealMoney: Apple just blew up the whole damn mobile-phone supply chain with its new iPhone – January 11, 2007
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eWeek: Apple iPhone fallout: ‘They must be crying in Nokia-ville and other telephony towns today’ – January 10, 2007
Jefferies downgrades Motorola on fears of market share loss to Apple iPhone – January 10, 2007
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Time: ‘iPhone could crush cell phone market pitilessly beneath the weight of its own superiority’ – January 09, 2007
Analyst: Apple iPhone should be given its own category – ‘brilliantphone’ – January 09, 2007
Apple debuts iPhone: touchscreen mobile phone + widescreen iPod + Internet communicator – January 09, 2007

85 Comments

  1. MacDailyNews Take: There’s a reason why Balsillie needs a helper to be CEO of a company with a market value that’s but a third of Apple’s. There’s also a reason why Steve Jobs excelled as the sole CEO of not only Apple, but also of Pixar for years. We’ll file Balsillie’s myopic comments away for future use; you know, for the day RIM announces restructuring, upon Balsillie’s announcement that he’s leaving RIM to “spend more time with his family,” when RIM transitions into an iPhone accessory-maker, that sort of thing.

    Nani Take: It gets a little old reading MDN’s dismissive takes on every other tech company. Apple is great and Steve Jobs is a genius, but it’s not really neccessary to slam everyone else in the business every time they’re less than awed by Apple’s products.

    I visit this site because it’s a good way to keep up on the latest Apple doings – but sometimes I have to laugh at the know all attitude of the ‘take’ writers. What’s MDN’s market value BTW?

  2. Gotta go with Nani on this one. If there is a competitor out there RIM is it. For sure the iPhone will be a far superior product but the price differential will probably be a key factor. Apple will have to drop their price a little to eliminate RIM altogether in order to make MDN’s sarcastic comments a reality.

  3. Nani,

    You have to be kidding, right?

    What I found most amusing is that a public company CEO would come out and dismiss a serious threat to their smartphones. Not only that, but he’s put his company at risk for an investor class-action lawsuit for this reassurance should it come back to haunt him.

    It was completely irresponsible on the part of the CEO, IMO.

    When RIMM finds themselves disappointing the street, just wait for the class-action lawyers to smell blood.

    HAB

  4. Watch as all the competitors bump their price up to match Apple vs. Apple lowering their price. They are so frigg’n jealous of Apple’s profit margin it’s unbelievable.

    If you let your product become a commodity – then you deserve to go out of business.

    mw: terms
    as in, apple does it on their own terms.

  5. I’m as big an Apple fan as anyone, but I think Balsillie is pretty close to on target with his take. Blackberry is entrenched as a technology in corporate and government America. The camera alone will kill in in a lot of companies and most of government. Without a hard keyboard it’s going to have problems, and if the Exchange support (and Notes and GroupWise support for that matter) isn’t killer, it’s tough to make a case for it in corporations.

    As my personal consumer phone, there’s nothing I’d rather have. I just need to know way more about its capabilities than I do for me to say I’m ready to throw out the Blackberries. I hope its a player, but honestly, none of us knows yet.

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