Apple’s iPhone 3G fallout: RIM’s decline likely mirror Palm’s?

David Shipley blogs for CanadaEast:

From The Globe and Mail’s Technology section (July 16, 2008):

[RIM Co-CEO Jim] Balsillie made it clear that RIM isn’t sweating the iPhone.

“The key thing is just to charge ahead,” he said. “If you look back you lose your forward momentum … the only thing we can control is getting better products out sooner.”

Shipley asks, “I wonder if a deer caught in a transport truck’s headlights sweats before it gets hit?”

“The only thing RIM is charging ahead to is hard times. RIM isn’t going to disappear overnight, but it’s decline will likely mirror that of the once-great Palm. The Blackberry will remain a strong player in the corporate and government sector for some time to come, but it’s about to get smoked in the consumer market. Meanwhile Apple’s iPhone will make slow, steady inroads into the corporate world,” Shipley writes.

“A problem with RIM’s plan of getting better products out sooner is it assumes you can build something better than the iPhone without violating the boatload of patents Apple has on their latest gadget,” Shipley explains. “Apple, having learned some hard lessons from the early days of the OS wars, has prepared thoroughly for the roll out of the iPhone.”

“Another problem is it also assumes Apple isn’t already developing future generations of iPhones that leap even further ahead, making it hard for RIM to match the iPhone, let alone surpass it,” Shipley writes.

“The iPhone isn’t going to crush its smart phone competitors because its hardware is sleeker (although it is) and it’s not going to beat them because its software is more intuitive, powerful and easy-to-use (which, again, it is), the iPhone is going to win the most important technology battle of the 21st century because the iPhone as a platform (hardware, iPhone software, iTunes and the App Store) represents an unbeatable combination,” Shipley writes.

Full article (most of which we’ve excerpted with permission) and other Apple-related articles via here.

We’ve learned and struggled for a few years here figuring out how to make a decent phone. PC guys are not going to just figure this out. They’re not going to just walk in.Palm CEO Ed Colligan, commenting on then-rumored Apple iPhone, Nov. 16, 2006

The last we heard, Cooligan (and his company) was lying in a corner somewhere yelling, “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!”

Will RIM Co-CEO* Balsillie be next?

*Jimmy needs a helper to do his job.


  1. “‘Another problem is it also assumes Apple isn’t already developing future generations of iPhones that leap even further ahead, making it hard for RIM to match the iPhone, let alone surpass it.'”

    That’s the worst news of all for RIM and every other iPhone competitor. They’re aiming at a moving target.

  2. @shen
    True, Apple is not a truck, but Apple will not swerve around the deer.

    Apple leapt over the deer long ago.

    The deer are just now finding out they will soon die of loneliness and starvation, and can only wish that they could have even a glimpse of Apple’s long-passed headlights.

    Okay, the euphemisms are making even ME a bit nauseous. I’ll stop if you will.

  3. I still maintain that we’re all thinking to much about the phone part of iPhone. I think the thing that is quietly getting an indelible grip on the consumer is the idea of a true hand held a computer – A portable computer that can take over all but the most demanding portable computer tasks (not a PDA, a very personal computer) – A MacBook Air, but in the hand instead of in your lap. I would in fact argue that we essentially have that already with the iPod Touch. I realize that, as it stands there’s a huge performance difference between the Touch and a MacBook Air, but just think for a moment about what you actually do with a MacBook Air… For less than a tenth of the cost you can get the same job done with an iPod Touch. I think the whole business of competing with existing “smartphone” technology is a waste of air, the real question is, would I rather buy a Dell notebook or a 32GB iPod Touch – I know what my answer is.

  4. @Mac,
    the slide in Apple’s stock is not Apple’s fault. High US gas prices (triggered by the ridiculous rise in oil prices), the US mortgage crisis, and the banking crisis are killing the stock market in general. Apple is actually doing quite OK considering the circumstances.

    By the end of the year the stock will probably be where it’s supposed to be.

  5. RIM will not decline due to iPhone. Blackberry, and Blackberry Enterprise Server, are firmly entrenched in the corporate psyche and it will take more than iPhone 3G to unseat.

    Not saying that RIM won’t feel some pain. Just don’t expect them to roll over and show their throat. They have major corporate buy-in. And, unlike Microsoft, they have a good product. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

  6. Mac, “disappointment in the stock”?

    Are you kidding me? Are you paying attention to the rest of the economy. You should be thrilled you have aapl stock at least you haven’t lost your a$$ yet and the company has plenty of cash to weather any economic recession or slow down.

    You need to sell your stock if you don’t understand it and go to Vegas, you’ll be much happier.

  7. In perspective, Windows didn’t take as much of the Mac’s early market share as it rather expanded the market making the Mac’s share dwindle by comparison.
    Business appears to want and need an e-mail device that makes phone calls. Blackberry has that covered. The iPhone won’t take as much away from that niche as it will expand the market leaving Blackberry’s portion decreasing as the pie gets larger.
    What do you think?

  8. The Deer doesn’t sweat because it doesn’t have the ability to understand what is about to happen…

    iPod killers unite…form of—a dead skunk in the middle of the road.

    MDN Magic Word…”nature”

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