Print 33 comment(s) - last by JohnnyNoir.. on Feb 22 at 1:33 AM

RIM making adjustments to better compete with the iPhone and Droid smartphones

A TD Newcrest analyst said Research In Motion is making necessary changes to keep up with rival smartphone manufacturers, as the company continues to look for new ways to increase the number of apps it offers.

Analyzing industry thoughts on the RIM BlackBerry 3G Pearl 9100, Tour2 smartphone, and a new device that has both a physical keyboard and touchscreen -- the group found RIM is adjusting.

"We are not changing any estimates at this time, but we believe there could be upside to our numbers for the May quarter."

The dominant smartphone maker now has several anticipated phones in the coming months, which will help it compete against Apple, Motorola, Samsung, HTC, and others.  Even more phone manufacturers are expected to test out the smartphone market this year, including Sony Ericsson, Nokia, and other companies that must evolve to meet changing consumer needs.

Analyst Chris Umiastowski expects the 3G Pearl 9100 to be "a big success, just like the last Pearl," he said in an analyst note.  Another phone includes a hybrid device that has an optical navigation pad, physical keyboard and touchscreen keyboard.

Verizon Wireless reportedly will receive the Tour2 smartphone device -- said to now be in development -- including built-in Wi-Fi and a new optical trackpad that will replace the original trackball.

Furthermore, RIM is reportedly hearing positive comments regarding its new WebKit browser, but didn't elaborate further.

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Can it be true
By tpurves on 2/8/2010 11:34:23 AM , Rating: 3
BAH 3G and touchscreeens in a cell phone in 2010, this is the crazy stuff of science fiction you speak of. Could we be so lucky?

RE: Can it be true
By Hieyeck on 2/8/2010 3:15:25 PM , Rating: 2
10 years behind the Japanese? Sounds about right.

RE: Can it be true
By sigmatau on 2/8/2010 5:25:27 PM , Rating: 2
10 years? I'd say they are more like 5 years behind.

They have bulky phones with super tiny screens.
The hardware on the inside is at least 5 years old.
Slow? I think I can boot up my computer and browse something faster than using a BB that already has the browser up.
You can tell the hardware is old, just look at the apps and games. I doubt they can handle anything more than tetris.
Their keyboards suck! I guess I need to be a 3 year old girl to use them.
Same form factor for about a decade.
I own a one year old blackberry and will throw it against the wall when I get a TRUE SMART PHONE.

RE: Can it be true
By Omega215D on 2/8/2010 6:59:53 PM , Rating: 2
Don't know when you've last seen their phones but their screens are quite large and the phones are quite slim. Also the web browsing on the Motorola Droid is actually pretty fast as my bro was able to load a web page on his droid in a second or two while my Blackberry Storm 2 took it's sweet time. The Droid was able to load a page on 3G just as fast as my iPod Touch did on Wi-Fi. The Palm Pre Plus and HTC Imagio with WinMo 6.5 have pretty speedy web browsers and good signal strength as well.

Top Dog
By Gio6518 on 2/8/2010 6:08:52 PM , Rating: 2
There's now the original BlackBerry Curve 83xx series, the BlackBerry Curve 8900 and the more newly-released BlackBerry Curve 8520/30 on the market... that's a lot of Curves available for purchase on a lot of carriers in the USA. And according to the IDC Mobile Devices and Technology Trends division that tracks these things the BlackBerry Curve was yet again the best-selling smartphone in the USA for the calendar Q4 part of 2009. The top 10 smartphones sold in America were as follows:

1. RIM - BlackBerry Curve
2. Apple - iPhone 3G S
3. Motorola - DROID
4. Apple - iPhone 3G
5. RIM - BlackBerry Pearl
6. RIM - BlackBerry Bold
7. RIM - BlackBerry Storm
8. Palm - Pre
9. RIM - BlackBerry Tour
10. T-Mobile - myTouch 3G

RE: Top Dog
By monomer on 2/8/2010 6:53:17 PM , Rating: 2
Thanks for the information. It's interesting that the list combines all of the Blackberry Curve models, yet separates the iPhone 3G and the iPhone 3GS. It would be interesting to know where the combined sales would rank on this list.

blackberries in the hands of children
By drewidgho5t on 2/9/2010 3:21:02 AM , Rating: 2
So I purchased a blackberry pearl little over one year ago. Took me less than one week to despise the gadget. You would think the company would have done some evaluations of competitors phones. That way they could at least get the basic features that people enjoy.

Blackberries are a ONE trick pony. They have their own server farm where all messages are routed to and through. These farms are secure and have an exceptionally well regarded encryption. So the first phone company to come up with a stellar encryption algorithm will ingest the BB's market share very quickly.

How much do they suck?? After my first week with it, enough is enough. So I gave it to my kid- 11yrs old at the time. That one week I had it was of course one week of exposure for him also. What child is not going to play with dad's new tech toy.

11 yrs old. All about image and the look at me that reigns supreme at that age. An opportunity to be the kid in class with the newest, latest, greatest. And my kid took a pass.
Told him I would let him have it for free. He took a pass.

How much do blackberries suck? Even kids (well the smart ones anyway) dont want them.
Blackberry == Crackberry == CRAPBERRY

Ladies and Gents. Get ready to short those shares.

By JohnnyNoir on 2/22/2010 1:33:58 AM , Rating: 2
When will RIM die so i can get a real smartphone at work? Since one of our security guys is a Crackberry addict, he’s decided that we should all have them. I don’t like them. I’ve tried my wife’s Blackberry and I find them annoying. I don’t like the trackball, the screen is too small (I’m far-sighted) and I hate the keyboard too. So, I’m stuck with a WinMo 6.1 phone until the RIM is irrelavent as a phone option. They appear to difting in that direction. Can’t happen so enough for me.

Military applications
By crystal clear on 2/8/2010 9:08:45 PM , Rating: 2
In the coming year the Israeli defence forces plans to choose a new phone model to be used by commanders for the “Mountain Rose” encrypted military cellular network.

Mountain Rose is a completely secure network that enables IDF commanders to talk to one another via cellular phones that can also be operated from behind enemy lines, as they were during Operation Cast Lead in the Gaza Strip in 2009 and the Second Lebanon War in 2006.

“This is a completely secure network that is impossible to hack into,” a senior officer in the IDF’s C4I (command, control, communications, computers and intelligence) Directorate explained last week.

Following Cast Lead, OC C4I Directorate Maj.-Gen. Ami Shafran ordered his staff to propose new devices that could replace the phones currently used for the Mountain Rose network.

Under consideration is the BlackBerry as well as Apple’s I-Phone.
The IDF is also planning to expand the bandwidth of the network to enable the new devices to receive live video footage from, for example, unmanned aerial vehicles, and to hold video-conference calls.

Military applications (note the portion underlined) for the blackbeery & the iphone,also a custom made/modfied ipad with built in camera will result in sales in their millions ($).

All the major armed forces around the world could follow this course.

they wont do anything that good
By webmastir on 2/8/10, Rating: 0
Hope they improve things...
By eek2121 on 2/8/10, Rating: -1
RE: Hope they improve things...
By TMV192 on 2/8/2010 7:56:31 AM , Rating: 2
It's being taken quite seriously at RIM. Engadget posted sometime ago that RIM was not only transitioning to a webkit browser, but also by the middle of this year, being more open to developer customization. They are also rumored to be licensing the PowerVR GPUs including on the current models that already have them to improve 3D capabilities. I think they are finally getting that their popularity has stretched well beyond the business market

RE: Hope they improve things...
By TheSpaniard on 2/8/2010 8:20:26 AM , Rating: 2
dont forget charging to use exchange, something free on both droid and winmo phones

RE: Hope they improve things...
By sapiens74 on 2/8/2010 8:32:46 AM , Rating: 2
Droid does not fully implement Exchange like iPhone and Windows mobile phones so it doesn't matter if it is free or not.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By Mitch101 on 2/8/2010 8:42:32 AM , Rating: 2
Please dont put iPhones into an Exchange environment. I know many a manager which thinks their pretty interface device would be a great idea but its not. Management does not comprehend what goes into making that work properly and how it can compromise the security of their infrastructure.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By bhieb on 2/8/2010 10:07:08 AM , Rating: 2
Huh? We've implemented it here and there were no additional modifications over what it takes to use a WiMo (essentially we did nothing different when we allowed our first iPhone on). SSL cert, and OWA address. Prior to Apple licensing Active Sync I would agree, but now it is not really any different than a WiMo over owa.

I will agree it is not as secure as a VPN based solution, but with SSL it is ok.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By Mitch101 on 2/8/2010 10:50:48 AM , Rating: 3
The problem lies in the applications one can run on the devices themselves. Too many places are blending consumer devices into corporate environments when they have nothing to do with Corporate work. How can you control what applications are installed on the iPhone device? How are you able to secure the corporate information in the iPhone from leaving an organization or that person moving that data to another computer outside the organization? Its not just the iPhone were analyzing this also from the new BB's that came out with Wifi. While a lot of companies see it as a cost cutting measure to allow for consumer based devices into corporate its only a matter of time before someone uses that Wifi, bluetooth, or installed app to backdoor into your corporation. These features sound good to end users/managers but as an Admin its just another potential leak that will be sprung. This is probably why Microsoft is designing two Windows 7 mobile devices. One for corp and one for consumers. Probably the same device but different OS lock ability. We wont know until they arrive.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By bhieb on 2/8/2010 11:02:50 AM , Rating: 2
I would agree with that assertion as there is a big lack of control, but as you said any Wifi/app phone would pose the same issues.

Just like anything there is a risk/benefit analysis that needs to be done. For me though it is about the same risk as having OWA at all. These days it is far more likely that some manager's home PC will get infected by a trojan/keylogger and snag his credentials for VPN, OWA, File access etc.

Unfortunately there is ALWAYS a trade off between mobility and security. My objection to your post was that you singled out the iPhone, when by your own logic basically any "smart" phone that allows apps is not acceptable.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By Lord 666 on 2/8/2010 11:42:30 AM , Rating: 2
Actually, using BES, there isn't a tradeoff and that is why RIM is the market leader.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By bhieb on 2/8/2010 12:32:27 PM , Rating: 2
Ok fine. I'll fix it :)

Unfortunately there is ALWAYS a trade off between mobility, security, and COST.

Cost being the issue whereas OWA is essentially free if your running exchange anyway.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By Lord 666 on 2/8/2010 2:00:27 PM , Rating: 2
What would it cost your organization if sensitive data was lost? From a compliance perspective, we are bound by HIPAA/HITECH along with other federal regulations.

Because of the potential data loss and the economic fallout of unauthorized access, the cost of secure and manageable access via BES is chump change compared to federal fines and/or lawsuits.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By steven975 on 2/8/2010 8:51:48 AM , Rating: 2
Android does support Exchange enough for the vast majority of Exchange users out there. I'm using it now for mine (yes, with an unlock code).

About the only real shortcoming is the "free" appointments show up colored on my calendar, but in the detail they are "free". I don't think it has the GAL either.

One biggie is that it does not enforce a PIN or locking for Exchange use, which is kind of a big deal.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By Yawgm0th on 2/8/2010 12:20:47 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, you must pay for BES and licenses, but it is far more than Exchange integration. It also works better than every other implementation out there -- even WinMo.

A bigger problem is carriers charging extra for BlackBerry enterprise data packages. I understand why they do it, but the cost increases from that quickly outpace the cost of BES and licenses and continue indefinitely. BES is a one time fee, and for a business it's a pretty reasonable cost for what it provides.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By Drag0nFire on 2/8/2010 9:48:27 AM , Rating: 2
I think of these the 4th is actually the most important. Hardware can be modeled after competitors and speed can be improved with faster processors / webkit.

But the clumsy UI will hold Blackberry back. If they change it, their diehard fan base will cause an uproar. But as it is, they will keep losing customers to Apple and Android because the OS is simply hard to use and less capable.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By Lord 666 on 2/8/2010 10:14:42 AM , Rating: 2
Let me add #5; the form factor of the devices has been weak. Need to make a flip phone with a full QWERTY keyboard. Didn't understand the flip phone with the Pearl style keyboard. Unless the new Pearl has a QWERTY keyboard, it will fail.

Even my wife says she will purchase a BB once they come out with a flip that uses a QWERTY keyboard and she hates BBs.

PS - About the hybrid touchscreen/real keyboard, its been done before in the Treo 700P. I personally do not see the need for touchscreen, but the only feature that means anything is LTE support and finally getting rid of that horrible track ball.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By ksherman on 2/8/2010 11:11:47 AM , Rating: 3
Having used the Pearl (first version) a few years back for two years straight, there is nothing crippling about the SureType QWERTY they use. Its really fast to type on, only became a light pain in the ass when you had to type passwords in. I now have an iPhone, but I still look back fondly on my Pearl. Aside from the crappy browser, she did email and texting very well.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By theslug on 2/8/2010 1:46:02 PM , Rating: 2
The new Bold Blackberries have already gotten rid of the trackball, and without having to switch to a touchscreen.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By Lord 666 on 2/8/2010 1:52:54 PM , Rating: 2
Have several Curve 2 units deployed and love the new optical part. Unfortunately, I have an original Tour and must wait for the Tour 2.

The one complaint I have received about the Curve 2 are the keys are too small and close together. Comparing the Tour and Curve 2 side by side, it is very noticeable. Even Curve 1 and 2 there is a difference.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By IdBuRnS on 2/9/2010 9:00:11 AM , Rating: 2
"Let me add #5; the form factor of the devices has been weak. Need to make a flip phone with a full QWERTY keyboard. Didn't understand the flip phone with the Pearl style keyboard. Unless the new Pearl has a QWERTY keyboard, it will fail.

Even my wife says she will purchase a BB once they come out with a flip that uses a QWERTY keyboard and she hates BBs."

Are you and your wife retarded? Good luck finding ANY carrier willing to make this gargantuan monstrosity that you are looking for.

My Curve 8310 has about the smallest usable QWERTY and the phone is about 25% wider than my wife's Pearl. Who wants to have a flip phone as wide (or wider) than a Curve? Here's a hint... NO ONE.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By Lord 666 on 2/10/2010 10:40:53 AM , Rating: 2
Take a look at my wife's current phone for design ideas; the VZW Env 3. Its a flip phone that has QWERTY keyboard.

My current phone is a Tour, but in sequential order going backwards Curve (2008-2009), 8830 (three weeks in 2008), Treo 700P (2006-2008), Treo 650 (2005-2006) and Treo 600 (2004-2005)

All RIM has to do is put a Blackberry logo on it and maybe optical touchpad.

RE: Hope they improve things...
By Yawgm0th on 2/8/2010 12:17:42 PM , Rating: 2
But the clumsy UI will hold Blackberry back. If they change it, their diehard fan base will cause an uproar. But as it is, they will keep losing customers to Apple and Android because the OS is simply hard to use and less capable.
DT reported a month or so ago that RIM was gaining market share while still maintaining the #1 spot in the smartphone market...

RE: Hope they improve things...
By omnicronx on 2/8/2010 12:02:00 PM , Rating: 2
4 is about the only one I can semi agree with. I like the basic BB gui, but I do think it is inconstant at times.

That all being said, get this through your head, not everyone wants a touch phone, and not everyone needs to have a 1ghz processor. BB's have better battery life than pretty much any smartphone, the ability to text, email and do simple browsing is all that most business users and/or normal users need.

Blackberry has a touch device, its called the storm. I unless you are going to have a slideout, I never understood the point of querty+keyboard anyways. There is not one phone that pulls it off effectively (yes even the Pre makes it difficult with their ultra tiny keys)

RE: Hope they improve things...
By sigmatau on 2/8/2010 5:19:07 PM , Rating: 2
You must not know much about smart phones if you think that a BB is like other smartphones.

You are comparing a BB with true multimedia smartphones. First, most BB are really old technology. They are horridly slow. Second, they have a TINY screen. You are again comparing a BB to a touchscreen with more than 2x the screen. What do you think takes up more energy, a screen with x space or a screen with 2x space? Hmm? Not rocket science there buddy. How much battery life does the Storm get? You avoided that part did you? Since you won't say, I will: they suck just as bad as any other touch phone.

Blackberries are the dumbest smart phones out there. Some of us want better browsing, a decent size screen (not ones from the flip phone era like most BBs), a touch screen, and a true multimedia smartphone. Comparing a Curve or some of the other crap BB makes to a true multimedia smartphone like an Iphone or Droid is silly. The BB Touch is in the category, but its sales figures tells us that BB can't make that type of phone yet.

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