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RIM's workforce has shrunk by over a quarter in the past three years

Waterloo, Ontario based Research in Motion, Ltd. (TSE:RIM) used to be the darling of the smartphone industry.  For a time "BlackBerry" was almost synonymous with "smartphone", but today RIM has fallen on hard times.  It can hardly convince customers to buy its smartphones, let alone its flopped tablet, despite the price being slashed from $500 USD to around $200 USD.

Desparate times call for desparate measures, and a report in top Canadian newspaper Globe and Mail indicated this week that RIM would be axing 2,000 jobs worldwide, from its roughly 16,500 workers.  That 12 percent reduction in workforce is a sign of just how dire things are for the phonemaker, who is facing the prospect of a sale or bankruptcy.

An anonymous executive told The Globe and Mail, "They’ve been axing people on the sly for months.  Lots of guys are being packaged out right now." an executive is quoted as saying."

At its pinnacle around 2009, RIM employed over 20,000.  With the latest cuts, RIM's global workforce will have shrunk by almost 28 percent.

The layoffs are expected to begin June 1, a day before RIM announces its latest fiscal quarterly results -- which some fear will be another loss.  Some employees are expected to be pressured to take early retirements and buyout incentives, others will be directly laid off.

The cuts could save RIM $1B USD, but that could be a short term solution, given that the company lost $125M USD (an eighth of a billion) in Q1 2012, and many expect those losses to accelerate as sales shrink.

RIMdenberg
Some fear the cuts won't be enough to save RIM. [Image Source: Jason Mick/DailyTech LLC]

Worldwide the BlackBerry accounts for only 7 percent of smartphone shipments, according to market research firm IDC Group.  And in the U.S. RIM's market share is at about 4 percent -- indicating that a mere one in every-twenty-five devices sold is a BlackBerry.

New CEO Thorsten Heins compares recent layoffs and executive departures to throwing out pieces of a puzzle -- pieces he says you "don't need".  He comments, "[Reviews] kind of allowed me to get a clearer view of what fits, and what doesn’t fit.  Think of it like a jigsaw puzzle. I kind of figured out a few pieces that I don’t need in my puzzle to be successful."

Analysts widely believe RIM's only hope at survivial is its upcoming BlackBerry 10 operating system, but many are pessimistic regarding whether BB10 will be enough to save the sinking devicemaker.

Source: The Globe and Mail



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RE: The customer is always right.
By Motoman on 5/26/2012 4:04:17 PM , Rating: 2
Blackberry became popular with corporations because of it's integration into corporate email and calendaring systems, etc. It was never all that popular with the general public as the kind of device you'd go to BBY and buy on your own for your own personal cell phone.

RIM needs to get back to that core corporate customer...which has been ditching them for Android or other devices. Frankly RIM needs to not worry about the general public which has never been it's audience anyway. They need to develop new benefits for the enterprise, and reestablish themselves in their traditional stronghold.


RE: The customer is always right.
By TakinYourPoints on 5/26/12, Rating: 0
RE: The customer is always right.
By TakinYourPoints on 5/26/12, Rating: -1
RE: The customer is always right.
By TakinYourPoints on 5/27/12, Rating: 0
RE: The customer is always right.
By sprockkets on 5/27/2012 10:45:34 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
LOL, two well sourced and unbiased posts get downvoted, the fanboy circlejerk here is hilarious


You could have just summarized your posts into like 3 sentences. In case you haven't noticed, posting long worded "swash" posts is heavily frowned upon here. You also are quite deluded if you think those sources are "unbiased".


RE: The customer is always right.
By TakinYourPoints on 5/29/2012 12:01:29 AM , Rating: 2
Most of it was cut & paste, but I'll keep that in mind.

Otherwise, how are independent studies that lay out pros and cons that everyone knows about, statistics from Google themselves, and knowing the differences between Android versions biased?

Maybe you don't like what it has to say, but it is far from biased or dishonest.


RE: The customer is always right.
By sprockkets on 5/29/2012 11:41:01 AM , Rating: 2
Well I'll give you points for that, cause you aren't like those other idiots like macdevdude. I also try not to be such a douche either.

I like android and know it isn't suited as well for the enterprise. And as backstabbing as apple has been for businesses, it still will get adopted better than android for most purposes.


By TakinYourPoints on 5/29/2012 2:57:04 PM , Rating: 2
Macdevdude is out of his mind, same as a few other commenters. That said, insanity runs high on both sides of the fence, its pretty weird.


RE: The customer is always right.
By matty123 on 5/26/2012 5:50:19 PM , Rating: 4
This may be true in the business world but is certainly not the case infor
Link: http://edition.cnn.com/2012/02/03/tech/mobile/gove...

quote:
However, the government chose to work on Android first because Google already allows people to tinker freely with its code, said those working on the project. Federal officials have met with Apple, but they were told they could not have access to the core of the company's mobile operating system, said Angelos Stavrou, an information-security director at George Mason University who is working on the government project as a contractor, in a phone interview.


Link: http://androidcommunity.com/nsa-releases-ultra-sec...

quote:
To build SE Android, you’ll need to download and compile the latest code from the Android Open Source Project, then applying the custom SE Android code on top of it. So what do the extra bells and whistles do? Basically every single file and folder that Android has access to can be locked down tight, with considerable encryption and put in place to protect them. Network security is enhanced on both WiFi and mobile networks, and the already considerable app permission system is enhanced with multi-level security.


Link: http://androidcommunity.com/us-government-claims-t...

Link: http://venturebeat.com/2012/04/12/boeing-android-p...

Link: http://thenextweb.com/us/2012/02/03/the-us-governm...

In fact android is far more likely to be adopted by governments requiring strict security measures because apple doesn't allow access to the source code.


RE: The customer is always right.
By wind79 on 5/26/2012 8:07:21 PM , Rating: 2
Thanks for the links. I have no idea that Android has come so far and is so close to replacing BB for secure mobile computing devices now.


By TakinYourPoints on 5/26/2012 10:03:06 PM , Rating: 2
But it actually isn't, not without massive modifications and locking it down harder than any mobile OS out there.

For agency use, certainly, and as long as the people in charge stay on top of maintaining their own centralized security updates. For enterprise use, no way, not in its current popular form.


By TakinYourPoints on 5/26/2012 9:16:13 PM , Rating: 2
Thanks for the links.

A forked off version of Android that is completely cut off from any marketplace and banned from being modified by the user is certainly viable for government use.

It is almost like "reverse-jailbreaking" the OS. This is a gigantic divergence from any popular version of Android though, certainly different from what anyone here uses.

quote:
Currently SE Android is only intended for emulators and the Nexus S, and son’t expect much support if you intend to expand its horizons.


As you inferred, it is still not a viable option for enterprise given that you don't want to lock the users away from installing applications, etc. Either way, Android being "far more likely" isn't quite happening yet given that iOS is actually viable in its current form and being deployed.


RE: The customer is always right.
By poi2 on 5/26/12, Rating: 0
"I'm an Internet expert too. It's all right to wire the industrial zone only, but there are many problems if other regions of the North are wired." -- North Korean Supreme Commander Kim Jong-il














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