June 29th, 2012
06:37 PM GMT
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This was supposed to be Research In Motion’s come-back moment. Its last chance to show that the newest Blackberry, the 10, was going to be amazing enough to silence all those voices who said Blackberry was dead. It was not that moment.

Instead, Blackberry released quarterly results that confirmed analysts’ worst fears: It is bleeding cash, laying off a third of its workforce and delaying the launch of Blackberry 10 - again.

I don’t know why I am surprised. At every turn, at every opportunity to right itself, Blackberry management has failed miserably, smiling as they dig the grave. It seems incredible that current CEO Thorsten Heins can cling to the idea of launching the Blackberry 10 sometime next year - after the next generation iPhone comes out, after the holiday sales season, in dead of winter when consumers have no money left.

Even more incredible – the Blackberry 10 will not have a physical keyboard – just a touch screen. What? Isn’t the keyboard the reason people love their blackberry?

Talk to an analyst about RIM these days and all they can do is shake their heads. Before this earnings report there was a small glimmer of hope that maybe, just maybe, Research In Motion could do what Steve Jobs did back in the 1990s and bring the company back from the brink. But Blackberry is no Apple.

When I asked technology analyst Peter Misek, of Jefferies & Co., whether Blackberry put itself on the block as a whole he was pessimistic. “It will be very difficult for anyone to buy them," he said. "A buyer would have to get a handle on the fundamentals and they are deteriorating too rapidly.”

Analysts have slashed their forecasts and at least one is now on record saying RIM will fail and be out of the market by 2020. Others continue to think that the company’s intellectual property and user base have value, but they say management has to get more serious about selling.

It is hard to stay on top in the rapidly evolving tech space, but if companies had tombstones, RIM’s would say, Killed by Management.

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soundoff (29 Responses)
  1. Babak from Los Angeles

    My whole family is on iphone, but I stayed with BB. It is not good for surfing the net, but easier to type emails on it.

    June 29, 2012 at 7:52 pm |
  2. Pete Hamilton


    June 29, 2012 at 7:55 pm |

    RIM, Nokia and Motorolla can now form a club and fight for the low end market in third world countries. If not then all three would have to come up with a strategy to compete with the latest Samsung. I'd keep RIM alive for the sake of the jobs that we are about to lose.

    June 29, 2012 at 7:57 pm |
  4. Tutuvabene

    Apparently, Blackberry doesn't know their clientele, who, for the most part, want to keep the keyboard. Sad.

    June 29, 2012 at 8:29 pm |
  5. Mister Jones

    Windows Phone will gladly accept all former Blackberry users who want a mobile office solution.

    June 29, 2012 at 8:34 pm |
  6. Martins Olusegun

    Just went it looks like RIM is dieing... they are growing like crazy in Nigeria. I own an iphone, galaxy note and a blackberry of course. All my friends have one, all their friends have one. Its the cheapest and fastest way to stay connected in Nigeria

    June 29, 2012 at 9:27 pm |
  7. Kaden

    Umm helloo??? Does this need to be said?

    Time for new management and a new CEO, which should have happened a while ago!

    June 29, 2012 at 10:49 pm |
  8. Bill

    It's licensing model is too prohibitive when comparing to other smart phone devices. Additional charges for Blackberry data plans, additional charges for licensing, take any other smart phone and they can sync with Exchange without additional data plans nor licensing. The last 2 companies i have consulted at have ditched blackberry's for iPhones sighting costings alone. My current client is a Blackberry user but they are waiting on the new Windows 8. If they don't like it, they will go iPhone.

    June 29, 2012 at 10:58 pm |
  9. englishpersonaltrainer

    Wait a second! Physical keyboards are really the past, nobody wants or is producing it anymore. Even if customers say they like it, it´s becoming a fetiche – you have to get away from that and be totally creative. All they need is launch a new BB 10 RIGHT NOW plus:
    - new touch operating system
    - integration with new trends such as social networks / another thing (Apple is already doing that with Facebook on the upcoming iOS 6)
    - investment in growing 3rd world markets: you can offer them a lot of things.

    If you offer a BB that combines all its unique features + the touch screen, why would companies switch to iPhone?

    June 29, 2012 at 11:58 pm |
  10. Zealot

    Bleeding cash? Did you actually read the financials... cashflow was positive this quarter. The "loss" was on paper.

    June 30, 2012 at 12:26 am |
  11. Rodrigo Arroyo

    RIM is still quite big in third world countries like Ecuador, specially among young people, most kids still have BB, IPhone even thou popular still have no market penetration as do BB.
    I believe there are advantages and disadvantages between booth of them In their operational capabilities. Management should at least look into this markets , and hold on to them while adjusting in order to survive.
    I love my BB and so do my kids,and my kids friends. Think.

    June 30, 2012 at 12:29 am |
  12. skip

    I adore my blackberry and never want to switch. Personally, I like keys as touch screens drive me nuts. I can write an email without looking at my phone... can't do that with a touch screen.

    June 30, 2012 at 2:16 am |
  13. lanka0007

    I am from third world.... Nobody buys black berrys here. everybody buys an Android. Cheap ones abound. people poor enough to buy basic phones are too dumb to understand complexities of the BB.

    June 30, 2012 at 2:57 am |
  14. irek 725

    tsk! just when I switched to BB... now I got this bad idea. Or was it bad idea to decide switching to BB? I hope to enjoy BB for at least 2 years then I'll get something else. No wonder in the Philippines, they give BB as promo bundles... Do they know it's fading away? hmp!

    June 30, 2012 at 3:04 am |
  15. BB

    Too bad that so many employees (and the entire supply/sales chain) are suffering. Management was totally asleep at the wheel and lost the head-start they had. This company will go into the scrap heap after it limps along and burns it's $2 billion. A sad story.

    June 30, 2012 at 9:40 am |
  16. BB

    i have used blackberry since 2004 and finally switched to the iphone that said i would go back to the Blackberry right away if they came up with a phone that does everything need it to do. They have made amazing phones but crappy firmware. I dont think this is the end for them what i do see happening in the next few months is this
    1) the Apple vs Samsung law suit will decide the future of RIM, if apple wins the law suit and apple is banned for the sale of many of their popular handsets Blackberry 10 will make rim come bacl
    2) if apple does not win the law suit i see Blackberry going private with a huge share buy back program and have cash injected into them by google or Microsoft
    3) they survice this drop in share price and shock the market in early 2013

    only time will tell what will happen i dont think RIM will be gone they are way to valuable and have to big of a market share in big markets Like India and africa

    i was loyal to Blackberry for many years and will be again if they have the right product

    July 1, 2012 at 5:09 am |
  17. BB

    Sorry Type i mean if Apple vs Samsung law suit will decide the future of RIM, if apple wins the law suit and sansung is banned for the sale of many of their popular handsets Blackberry 10 will make rim come back

    July 1, 2012 at 5:10 am |
  18. HM

    Are you kidding me? BlackBerrys, along with iPhones and Galaxy phones, are crazy all over the middle east. Everyone has or at least had a BlackBerry.

    July 3, 2012 at 11:55 am |
  19. dust

    has anyone wondered why BlackBerries are still selling well in 3rd world countries? the phones might be expensive, maybe not if they are dumped at fire sale prices in those countries and RIM is subsidizing BBM services in those countries to keep the demand for their products but at low or no margin overall... they are loosing money and loosing money fast... I doubt they will even last till 2015...

    July 5, 2012 at 4:45 am |
  20. asdf

    Blackberry proving you can't sell butt ugly 2007 phones forever and not get walloped by the market.

    July 5, 2012 at 6:04 pm |
  21. Larry

    RIM will always be around as long as their biggest customer (the US government) still holds a contract with them!

    July 7, 2012 at 12:56 pm |
  22. Stivo

    There are 50% chances that Blackberry 10 will never be on the market because the company will fall apart before. 49% chances that they will go bankruptcy a year after the launch of bb10. 1% chances that they ll survive because they'll be bought by a tech giant...

    July 8, 2012 at 6:47 am |
  23. medhat

    Fun to learn English for free

    July 8, 2012 at 9:31 pm |
  24. brian

    Check out my analysis of RIM and where I think they will be in the next few years

    July 10, 2012 at 4:21 am |
  25. toonah

    I can't quite get my head around the "Killed by Management" epitaph. Once Apple set its sights on the mobile market, what hope did RIM truly have? Could anyone expect them to outdo the most innovative technical power of this new century? To be fair, blunders abound in RIM, but this is really a case of inevitability.

    July 27, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
  26. AGuest9

    I wonder what will happen to the Perimeter Inst.itute, now?

    July 27, 2012 at 10:02 pm |
  27. icons design

    It was registeed at a forum to tell to you thanks for the help in this question, can, I too can help you something?


    September 22, 2012 at 11:15 pm |
  28. icon design

    On mine, it not the best varaint


    September 23, 2012 at 6:17 pm |

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