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RIM finally grabs ahold of its future, dumps its past... sorta

The writing has been on the wall for months, but the co-CEO's of Research in Motion (RIM) are getting the boot. Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis have shared power at RIM for over twenty years and oversaw the company's dominance at the start of the smartphone revolution. In their place will be a new, solitary President and CEO: 54-year-old Thorsten Heins.


RIM's new CEO, Thorsten Heins, pictured on the left [Source: Getty Images]
 
Heins joined RIM in 2007 and was previously the Waterloo, Ontario-based company's Chief Operating Officer. Before landing at RIM, Heins' most prominent role was a Chief Technology Officer for the communications division of Siemens.

I. Rearranging the Deck Chairs?
 
For those expecting a big change for RIM now that someone new is in the driver’s seat, you’ll likely be disappointed. According to The Globe and Mail, Heins has been groomed by both Balsillie and Lazaridis over the past few years to slide into the role as CEO; so it’s not like the company is getting an injection of fresh blood.
 
Lazaridis and Balsillie, who both will remain on RIM's board, had kind words for their protégé. “There comes a time in the growth of every successful company when the founders recognize the need to pass the baton to new leadership,” said Lazaridis. “Jim and I went to the Board and told them that we thought that time was now.”
 
“I agree this is the right time to pass the baton to new leadership, and I have complete confidence in Thorsten, the management team and the company,” added Balsillie. “I remain a significant shareholder and a Director and, of course, they will have my full support.”

 
In addition, Heins has no plans to change RIM’s current course when it comes to its product development. “There’s no need for me to shake this company up or turn it upside down,” said Heins. “We are not at a point where we try to define a strategy, that’s done.”
 
Heins went on to tout RIM’s upcoming PlayBook 2.0 software and the delayed Blackberry 10 operating system. “BlackBerry 7 has been well received.  We are very excited about PlayBook 2.0 and BlackBerry 10.  The reception of our products at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show was encouraging.
 
“RIM earned its reputation by focusing relentlessly on the customer and delivering unique mobile communications solutions. We intend to build on this heritage to expand BlackBerry’s leadership position.”

II. From Prized Jewel to Falling Star 

Blackberry smartphones were the prized possessions of businessmen/businesswomen (and consumers) -- the smartphones were even lovingly referred to as Crackberries.

Former RIM Co-CEOs Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis 

However, the company was not agile enough to stay ahead of the game when new competitors entered the fray; especially once Apple's iPhone hit the market in 2007. What once was a small Chihuahua nipping at the heels of RIM in the beginning turned into a snarling pit bull once the full onslaught of Android-based smartphones started flooding the market.
 
When it comes to its current U.S. market share, things look bleak for RIM. According to Nielsen, Android smartphones have 46.3 percent of the market, while Apple's iPhone family has 30 percent market share. RIM has fallen from its commanding lead in the sector just a few short years ago to a meager 14.9 percent.


 
The numbers are even more sobering when you look at a three-month snapshot of smartphone sales. Those number shows that 51.7 recent smartphone acquirers went for Android devices, 37 percent flocked to iPhones, and just 6 percent crawled to RIM's Blackberries.

Sources: The Wall Street Journal, RIM, The Globe and Mail



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RE: It's about time
By retrospooty on 1/23/2012 8:57:21 PM , Rating: 2
Bah, those are the same rosey colored "cooked numbers" we have already seen. They also announced that the current quarters sales are expected to be down, and next quarter projected even lower. You dont seem to know the definition of the word spin. If you only show the positive, it comes out different. See - "Hitler invaded Poland and France and controls most of Europe". If you leave it there, it sounds like he won.

here is a better picture. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/16/business/rims-qu...

- RIM signaled that the current quarter would bring further financial disappointment.

- Research in Motion’s third quarter net income fell 71 percent

- The company said Thursday that its net income was $265 million, or 51 cents a share, plunging from $911 million, or $1.74 a share, in the same time period last year.

- RIM signaled that the current quarter would bring further financial disappointment. Growing inventories of unsold BlackBerrys at wholesalers and retailers led the company to forecast that it would ship only 11 million to 12 million phones in the current period.

Mark my words, the same thing I have been telling you all along. By later this year, there will be no way to keep cooking the books nad mking it all appear like its OK. Its going to be bad. Not just lower, drmatically lower and RIM will be sold.

YOu can deny all you want though. I know, RIM is poised to excel, and the world is all just trolls and liars.

Good luck with that.


RE: It's about time
By Pirks on 1/23/2012 9:36:13 PM , Rating: 2
Hey I've never said BB7 will save them from all the trouble for good, it was necessary to get BB7 out the door, and now the sales from BB7 are keeping them afloat for a while. I always knew BB7 was a temporary boost and so far it kept 'em afloat but it won't forever. QNX is the major boost, if the sales of QNX handsets will fail so will RIM, but I don't see the reason why it should fail, given my excellent experience with PlayBook. Maybe the market in general will disagree with me, we'll see about that, but even then trusting your constant trolling is a naive thing too. Both you and Mick have no idea about what RIM has shown at CES, so why would anyone trust two trolls like you who don't even know their basics?


RE: It's about time
By retrospooty on 1/24/2012 6:57:39 AM , Rating: 2
"Hey I've never said BB7 will save them from all the trouble for good"

When we started debating this back in like August, I was telling you its the beginning of the end for RIM and I am quite you insisted that OS7 would show us a huge sales bump. That certainly wasn't what happened. Now that QNX has been delayed until at least Q4, we will see how disastrously wrong it was. Wait for the next 3 quarters. Its gonna be brutal.

In August, you railed against everything I said... Now everything I said would happen is happening and you are still railing against it. RIM marketshare dropping globally, overall global sales declining, revenue down, profits down, marketshare and more importantly mindset are nearly gone. By the end of 2012 it will be too late for RIM. Its too large of a company to do business as a medium/small company. They will have to sell it.

You can think what you want, I will stay here in reality. Hell, at this point, I am sure that you know you are wrong, you just wont admit it. You'd have to be daft to not see it, and I dont think you are that daft.


RE: It's about time
By Pirks on 1/24/2012 1:46:16 PM , Rating: 2
I don't remember saying that BB7 would be really huge bump in sales, I always said that it was a temporary sales boost to allow them to survive until QNX arrives. Until QNX handsets arrive you are free to troll and spell the doom and gloom.
quote:
marketshare and more importantly mindset are nearly gone
Is this why EA and other big game publishers keep posting new games for Playbook? Plants vs Zombies, Dead Space, Cut The Rope etc etc... LOL, your "reality" looks pretty funny to me :)))


RE: It's about time
By retrospooty on 1/24/2012 2:16:06 PM , Rating: 2
Wow... games. Thats.... impressive. LOL. They have games on WebOS too. That proves it, you must be right.

So I guess you are going to insist that the ship isn't sinking, right up until its fully underwater. When they sell off the company, what will you say? Spooty was right? No, you'll probably just call the board of directors trolls and liars, just like Mick and me huh? The Iraqi minister of communications position may open up someday, it is a good fit, you should go for it.


RE: It's about time
By Pirks on 1/24/2012 2:51:16 PM , Rating: 2
WebOS never had Dead Space, Cut The Rope or Plants vs Zombies. Not that these facts will stop your trolling. Just mentioning.


RE: It's about time
By retrospooty on 1/24/2012 3:09:31 PM , Rating: 2
"WebOS never had Dead Space, Cut The Rope or Plants vs Zombies"

Games Pirks, it had alot of games. That wont save RIM.

"I don't remember saying that BB7 would be really huge bump in sales, I always said that it was a temporary sales boost to allow them to survive until QNX arrives."

Actually, I found what you said and its even funnier.

"The old RIM phones used to be weak in multimedia and used to have slow clunky UI, so back then there were some real/practical reasons for people to move to more multimedia friendly fancy/smooth UI toting platforms like iPhone.

Now with BB OS 7 these flaws are no more. There's HD video recording and all the multimedia/video/photo/etc bells and whistles one can wish (Playbook can shoot real high quality 1080p videos, watch this one about how movie directors/cinematographers use this Playbook's unique capability: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ypRQhYuHI80 ), full social integration with Twitter/BBM/Facebook etc, app store with 3 million downloads every day, fancy great looking and smooth UI, real fast 1.2GHz CPUs, full OpenGL ES 2.0 support, hew 4G radios, big time 3D games like Dead Space on Playbook, unique super high quality hardware keyboards on some models("typing on Bold 99xx is like typing on clouds in heaven" - they say in reviews), unique very convenient optical trackpad (can't live without it, it's the best thing since the invention of multitouch screen and Apple does NOT have this , bebebe :P), microSD slot and removable battery (both are not present in iPhone either, bebebe :P) etc etc... So, as youc an see now, there's no pull to other platforms anymore, since other platforms do not offer any significant advantages over RIM's platform "


ROFLMAO! ... The underlined portion, extra ROFLMAO!, The bold part - The ultimate ROFLMAO@your delusions. Its like watching a dog chase its tail. Funny, because its so dumb.

Ya, its great to know now that BBOS7 is out there is no pull toward IOS and Android devices... LOL. too funny.

thanks man, you really gave me a good laugh.


RE: It's about time
By Pirks on 1/24/2012 3:21:09 PM , Rating: 2
If there were significant pull towards other platforms then BB7 wouldn't sell at all, but instead it still allows RIM to stay afloat which is success given their situation. The convenient track pad is still there and other users don't have it, you have to buy BB to get one. This one is still true, and no trolling can change that :) Playbook still keeps on top of quality tablets, only behind iPad in terms of amount of fart apps and some high-end 3D games. Which is a big deal for some Apple users, agreed on that.


RE: It's about time
By retrospooty on 1/24/2012 3:38:05 PM , Rating: 2
"If there were significant pull towards other platforms then BB7 wouldn't sell at all"

There is a significant pull and its not selling much.

" The convenient track pad is still there and other users don't have it, you have to buy BB to get one. This one is still true, and no trolling can change that "

Ya, you are correct. RIM has the market cornered on the trackpad. LOL. Nice feature in 2002. Unfortunately we all want to use touchscreens in the year 2012.

"Playbook still keeps on top of quality tablets"

Ya, when they took that $485 million hit for dumping the price becasue no-one wants it and they WAY overbuilt, i am sure that is exactly what Lazardis and Balsilie thought. " Its a top quality tablet" LOL.

Keep 'em coming LOL>


RE: It's about time
By Pirks on 1/24/2012 5:24:33 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
its not selling much
14 millions per quarter is not much? Are you drunk?
quote:
we all want to use touchscreens in the year 2012
You don't realize that trackpad on BB is IN ADDITION to touch screen so no one prevents you to use old style touch only interaction. That is if you don't want to use extra convenience and comfort of a trackpad. For ignorant Android and Apple users touch screen is all they know, why would they bother to learn more convenient forms of interaction with their phones? Learning is hard, bashing is easy.
quote:
when they took that $485 million hit for dumping the price becasue no-one wants it
Yeah tell that to Steve Jobs who dumped the price of iPhone form $600 to $200 because "no-one wants it".

Keep your dumb LOLs coming indeed, this is fun!


RE: It's about time
By retrospooty on 1/24/2012 5:33:30 PM , Rating: 2
"14 millions per quarter is not much? Are you drunk? "

That was last quarter, they are projecting lower this quarter, and without a decent OS replacemnt, it will be even lower next quarter. Keep hoping though.


"you don't realize that trackpad on BB is IN ADDITION"


Uh, yes, I know. I see and support Blackberries at work. Most of them come in and users request modern phones like Android and iPhone. The trackpoint is still NOT a feature. Its like selling an iPad with a mouse and calling it unique. LOL. Its old and shows Blackberries age and irrelevance.

"Yeah tell that to Steve Jobs who dumped the price of iPhone form $600 to $200 because "no-one wants it"."

Apple made money on the iPhone... Tons of it. RIM lost $485 mil in ine quarter. Not quite the same thing.

You are hilarious. Only Pirks could spin a $465 million dollar loss on a failed product as good. Truly amazing.


RE: It's about time
By Pirks on 1/24/2012 7:35:11 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
without a decent OS replacemnt, it will be even lower next quarter
Who told you there will be no decent OS repalcement? The sales may go up after QNX phone is released, the fact that older OS doesn't sell well anymore is not a reason to bury RIM yet.
quote:
Its old and shows Blackberries age and irrelevance
I heard same phrases about single button MacBook trackpad, they also said single button is old and irrelevant etc etc. Funny trolls eh :)
quote:
spin a $465 million dollar loss on a failed product as good
I don't see the reason why other companies can sell products below the manufacturing price in order to grab market share quick, and RIM can't. This is normal practice to grab market share. MS and Sony did this with their consoles, RIM also uses the same trick. It's just your double standards at work here.


RE: It's about time
By retrospooty on 1/24/2012 9:08:10 PM , Rating: 2
everything you just said sounds like the iraqi communications minister. We have beaten the infidel americans back to the border. I'm done with your denial for now. Will see you next month at the next quarterly report when rim announces the sales are even lower than expected. Unless of course some additional piece of bad news comes up first for you to deny


RE: It's about time
By Pirks on 1/24/2012 9:33:43 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah, see ya at the next biased post of Mick where he ignores positive RIM news and emphasizes the negative news again.


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