How beleaguered RIM’s half-CEOs lost an empire

“Research In Motion, whose BlackBerry phones pioneered wireless email, no longer holds the commanding heights in the smartphone market,” Jesse Hicks reports for The Verge. “The past year has been especially hard on the once-innovative RIM, but it may be at a turning point. Or the beginning of the end.”

“There was Mike Lazaridis, four years post-iPhone, sitting with BBC technology correspondent Rory Cellan-Jones for a quickie interview and product demo. Stout and gray-haired, glasses perched on his nose, and wearing a grey BlackBerry polo shirt, Lazaridis pitched the tablet as delivering “an uncompromised experience in enterprise.” He continued in the same vein, gamely batting away questions about the iPad’s dominance. Though not a terribly compelling presenter, Lazaridis delivered his bullet points competently, if somewhat disjointedly,” Hicks reports. “Then the interview turned.”

Hicks covers oodles of tales regarding RIM’s headlong dive into beleaguerment and concludes, “A final analysis comes from the man whose company pulled the rug out from under RIM in 2007. Speaking in late 2010, he said, ‘They must move beyond their comfort area into the unfamiliar territory in trying to become a software platform company. I think it’s going to be a challenge for them to create a competitive platform and to convince developers to create apps for yet a third platform after iOS and Android. With 300,000 apps on Apple’s app store RIM has a high mountain ahead of them to climb.’ That man, of course, was Steve Jobs.”

Tons more in the full article – recommended – here.

MacDailyNews Take: DCW.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Daniel N.” for the heads up.]

Related articles:
Beleaguered Nokia axes 4,000 jobs; shifts production to Asia – February 8, 2012
Beleaguered RIM touts CEO change, plans to stay on same course; analysts unimpressed – January 23, 2012
Beleaguered RIM names new CEO; half-CEOs step down amid struggle to answer Apple
Sunday, January 22, 2012

Beleaguered RIM positions itself as takeover bait – January 6, 2012


  1. Impressive article. Also all of Apple competitors were so arrogant back then. Some still are. Only google was quiet since they were in the background waiting to release their ripoff of ios POS. RIM lost because they clearly cannot compete with Apple legally. Google/Android surpasses iOS because clearly they cheated and stole IP from Apple. No wonder Steve Jobs was so pissed! Google and their Mole stabbed Steve in the back while he was sick and dying. What a bunch of assholes.

    1. Justice will prevail, just wait and watch and see.

      If things happen as I hope, Apple will use some form of SIRI to ruin sCroogle’s search empire, and catch them with their pants around their ankles.

    2. RiM and the other competitors were condescending and arrogant because as emperors they spoke only to yes-men, resting on their laurels while they failed to see their clothes dissolving from the acid of change.

      Google was quiet because burglars, sneak thieves, moles, judases, parasites, con artists, traitors, and sniveling little geeks plotting to take over Earth’s women all tend to be quiet.

  2. “… but it may be at a turning point. Or the beginning of the end.” Jesse Hicks reports for The Verge.

    (tongue firmly placed in cheek)

    Now that, ladies & gents, is how you straddle a fence.


    1. Talk about failure! Co-CEO Balsillie not only failed to skate to where the puck was going to be, but tried to buy his own pucks—and failed—three times, while his business slowly circled the drain.

  3. I’m tired of this site bashing RIM. RIM was innovative. time passed them by. RIM was highly evolved
    serving its customers with tools they needed. Apple came along and REVOLUTIONIZED the industry.
    I doubt that RIM or anyone else would have changed that. If I were RIM, I would go back to doing what I do best, secure email for corporate accounts.

    1. Yeah they were innovative.

      Amazing read. They sure were ahead of the game at one point. Basically what everyone saw as impossible they saw as an engineering challenge.

      Fascinating how they carried the load of communications during 9/11 when all other sytems were down.

      RIP RIM

  4. RIM hardly pioneered anything. They were simply the best of a bunch of poorly designed devices in a fledgling market that even Bill Gates stated would eventually be swallowed by the big PC makers. The Newton showed what a portable device with a GUI should do, many years before, but RIM ignored it. Rim got arrogant in believing text-only internet access, backward email listings, chicklet keyboards, a hierarchical interface and small screens were not only “good enough” but great. That’s completely looney-tunes and akin to believing IBMs 1984 DOS CLI interfaces would rule forever … after seeing the Mac OS debuted. As with the launch of the MacOS, the iPhone shot an arrow through RIM’s hot-air balloon and yet they were still dumb enough to think people preferred their antiquated ways. By the time they woke up, 5 years later, it’s all but over for RIM. Nokia and Samsung were smart enough to partner with MS and Google giving them access to precious R&D money plus PC interoperability to compete with Apple. RIM has already left it too late. There’s no good partners to be had. Nothing left now for RIM but an eventual fire sale on their patents.

    BTW: Steve was being untypical and *nice* when he said RIM has a challenge. Everyone knows he was really saying they haven’t got a hope in hell.

  5. I really dislike articles whose writers seem to need to fill up space by adding totally irrelevant verbiage like “…Stout and gray-haired, glasses perched on his nose, and wearing a grey BlackBerry polo shirt…” Like who really cares? If you’re trying to beef up your word count, how about describing the car he drove up in, what kind of weather was outside, the smell of the coffee, whether or not he looked like he’d just taken a whiz…

    1. This kind of writing has always bothered me, too, like the author is a frustrated novelist. But having said that, there IS a right way include those little human facts/observations and make them relevant, but a single article is generally not long enough for such exposition. It’s done by tying personality traits into the personality and using that to shed light onto his world outlook, making sense of his actions and decisions.

  6. I would like to buy RIM, and Blackberry and run it, simply because of the names involved. I mean Blackberry was synonymous with business, and a tablet device could have done wonders- but they botched the whole thing up. They pioneered the use of email on mobile devices, and the Playbook didn’t have it standard? That was a very dumb move, but I think it’s fixable.
    Apple had the freakin Macintosh in 1984, that was a huge thing, but then in the 1990s they lost their innovation, but they got it back, and share price is over $500.00. It’s still possible for blackberry to rise again, but it needs better management.

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