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RIM's Blackberry smart phones helped revolutionize the industry.   (Source: The Baltimore Sun)

Now the company appears to be plodding slowly towards extinction as app developers and customers abandon it.  (Source: George Arthur Bush)
Developers are dropping support for RIM like a bad habit

Software developer Seesmic, maker of popular social media management smartphone apps, delivered stinging news to Canadian-based smartphone maker Research in Motion, Ltd. (TSE:RIM), commenting in a blog post:

Effective June 30th, Seesmic will discontinue support for Blackberry in order to focus development efforts on our most popular mobile platforms: Android, iOS and Windows Phone 7.

While normally it would be foolish to microanalyze app defections, this was merely the latest development in a broad trend of top developers abandoning RIM this year.  Bloomberg reports that Purple Forge Corp., a maker of political campaign an polling apps, will drop general support for the platform, offering it only if clients specially request it.  Likewise, Mobile Roadie LLC, which makes apps for fans of the Miami Dolphins and country singer Taylor Swift, says it is ditching support for Blackberries.

Reportedly one key factor is that developing for RIM handsets is complex, thanks to a large amount of hardware inputs and a less than modern API that fails to match the ease of Google Inc.'s (GOOG) Android, Apple, Inc.'s (AAPL) iOS, or Microsoft Corp.'s (MSFT) Windows Phone 7.

Purple Forge CEO Brian Hurley reflects this, commenting, "As soon as RIM brought in a touchscreen and mixed it with a thumbwheel, a keyboard and shortcut keys, it made it really difficult and expensive to develop across devices. What Apple scored big on is having a touch screen and a button and that’s it. In deploying Apple applications, there are very few surprises. In Android, there are increasingly more surprises. But in BlackBerry, there are immediately lots of gotchas across the board.”

Like struggling Finnish phonemaker Nokia Oyj. (HEL:NOK1V), RIM is counting on an OS change to reverse its fortunes.  In early 2012, it will switch to using QNX's operating system in its new smartphones.  RIM's first QNX product was the PlayBook tablet, released in April -- a year after RIM acquired the small Canadian OS maker.

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RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By Souka on 6/28/2011 11:44:45 AM , Rating: 3
+1 for MeesterNid.

For a few years (during which the iphone was released) I was a Blackberry admin (BES + phone accounts).

The BB absouletly was an excellent tool, and a very useable device...when compared to the Kyocera and Windows smartphone offerings. 95% of the time when someone requested switching to a Windows device within 30 days wanted to be back on a BB.

But since the iPhone...and Android....I really do not like using them. The ONLY good market I see them for is the >older< executive business people. They just need a phone to make calls an email and RIM still excells at this.

But for 95% of non-business smartphone users and perhaps 75% of the business sector, I'd say stick with WinMo7, iPhone or Android devices.

I know people bash Winmo7....but it's actually a good business tool...excellent exchange email/calendar integration (duh).

And for me personally.... I'm absoultly dreading what going to happen soon at my work. We're switching from Android/Win platform which is rich full featured and low-cost plan with Verizon (with truely unlimited GB) to ATT and RIM devices.

My parent company loves RIM...rather the 2 or 3 people at the top we're locked in.

I use pretty much all 4 smartphone platforms on a weekly basis...and really do not like RIM anymore..

My $.02 of dribble.

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By Pirks on 6/28/2011 12:05:34 PM , Rating: 1
You will like RIM again when Bold 9900 and Torch 2 are out this August/September. I already posted a video here where early Bold 9900 alpha pwned iPhone 4 in a real life web browsing speed test. It will only get better from there when they move their phones to QNX instead of the old BlackBerry OS.

And Playbook is the best tablet for mobile web surfing at the moment, just ask myself or Anand, we both agree on that :P

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By maxxcool on 6/28/2011 12:09:09 PM , Rating: 2
LOL! hahahah... "pwned" lolz fail

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By Pirks on 6/28/2011 12:17:01 PM , Rating: 1
lolz iPhone fail
Yeah, Bold was 2 seconds faster in rendering web page than iPhone 4, iPhone fail indeed :)))

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By Mitch101 on 6/28/2011 1:38:21 PM , Rating: 2
Im a messaging engineer what you might want to consider is the Blackberry browser for compatibility which has a number of issues with Javascript. While it might render CERTAIN pages faster the inability to interpret certain javascript commands makes some page options and selections not possible while using the blackberry browser. Try using your blackberry browser on Sharepoint sometime and see how far it gets. Changing the blackberry browser compatibility to IE or Firefox resolves a lot of that javascript compatibility issues but now you just changed the performance of the browser and the experience is lost and the user frustrated. I would opt or compatibility over speed. I can wait an extra second to ensure I can use the submit button after filling out a form. Nothing more fun than filling out a form and not being able to submit it because the interpreter is lacking in the onclick not empty ability.

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By Pirks on 6/28/2011 2:18:09 PM , Rating: 2
Probably this stuff you're talking about is fixed in BB OS 7 and Playbook QNX browsers

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By Lord 666 on 6/28/2011 3:28:05 PM , Rating: 2
Carriers do not care about BBOS7. Hell, BBOS 6 is severly flawed with the sideways scrolling, bloated, and removed core functionality of the seven dots button to go up one level. Not to mention BBOS is bloated and makes the dates CPUs really struggle.

OS's don't sell phones, features do. So when does Playbook support Android 2.x material? RIM dropped the ball by releasing a half-baked product with its only saving grace not even included at launch.

I'm a huge BB/RIM fan, but I can't lie to myself of how those dumb co-CEO's blew the biggest technological lead seen in history.

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By Pirks on 6/28/2011 4:11:30 PM , Rating: 2
with its only saving grace not even included at launch
So what? Apple Mac's saving grace (compatibility with Windows) was not included from the start either.

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By maxxcool on 6/28/2011 6:00:01 PM , Rating: 2
Awesome so you want developers to code apps for a what ? 5th platform to make 1 app ?


go get your check from your media firm. and keep posting. its clear you are a forum-advertiser.

your not convincing anyone here to "run out and buy a BB"...

*WE* are the new market... *WE* buy the products. *WE* are buying android and IOS phones not because they can save us 2 seconds. we are buying them because we like them more than you.

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By Pirks on 6/28/2011 7:44:59 PM , Rating: 2
*WE* are the new market
Since when did Internet trolls became the new market?

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By maxxcool on 6/28/2011 6:29:21 PM , Rating: 2
um you understand that QNX doesn't develop browsers right?

jezuz your a lousy advertiser... they use the webkit engine. They pay third party developers to modify it.

QNX is a OS ... not a browser. and by using third party browsers they did not develop, they introduce more potential breaking points for apps and web client engines like vpn, rdp etc...

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By Pirks on 6/28/2011 9:41:00 PM , Rating: 1
eat this, moron:

"The U.S. Army is leaning toward the PlayBook because RIM addressed security concerns from the get-go"

hehe, it's not your cheapo android crap nobody cares about :P

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By maxxcool on 6/28/2011 5:55:46 PM , Rating: 2
again who cares when nobody wants to pay 3-5x as much to develop a app for a platform nobody likes.

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By Pirks on 6/28/2011 7:19:59 PM , Rating: 1
"Platform nobody likes" has 40 million subscribers and raked in 20 billions in revenue for RIM, so why don't you stop looking stupid?

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By Lord 666 on 6/28/2011 12:12:18 PM , Rating: 2
Its the exclusive contracts that are partially to blame for the loss of business for RIM. Put the Torch 2 on Verizon with LTE and it will sell.

VZW is still up in the air if it will carry the Playbook.

I am looking forward to the new Bold myself, currently playing with a Trophy. The only thing that takes the Trophy out of the running is lack of default device encryption... even with the lack of LTE.

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By name99 on 6/28/2011 9:27:04 PM , Rating: 2
You will like RIM again when Bold 9900 and Torch 2 are out this August/September. I already posted a video here where early Bold 9900 alpha pwned iPhone 4

So your argument is that the NEW Blackberry devices, to be shipped in Q3, are slightly faster than the CURRENT iOS device?

Hmm, that would be troubling if Apple planned to never ship an improved iPhone.
I wonder when that new iPhone will be shipping?

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By Lord 666 on 6/28/2011 12:07:46 PM , Rating: 1
Then you must be the worlds most ignorant mobile device admin...

Name a handset manufacturer that supports DoD encryption out of the box? Answer: Only RIM

What handset encryption method is supported by the HTC Trophy? Answer: None

Why does the Xoom has device level encryption but the Thunderbolt does not? Answer: No idea. Yes, I know that the Sprint Exprt and Droid Pro do.

What default encryption method does the iPhone using iOS 4.x allow? Answer: None

Sure I only used Verizon/Sprint examples, but in verticals that require encryption methods (oh, lets say healthcare, public sector, etc) then that will become RIM's niche.

Its is my opinion that RIM's best hope for survival is being purchased by Cisco.

RE: Next BlackBerry phone
By maxxcool on 6/28/2011 6:01:52 PM , Rating: 2
Or microsoft. true they'd strip them bare and feats on the carcass.

"The Space Elevator will be built about 50 years after everyone stops laughing" -- Sir Arthur C. Clarke

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