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  (Source: Jason Mick/DailyTech (Original Image: AP))
RIM urges developers not to "be mislead", that "the [BlackBerry 10] launch is just ahead" in Q1 2013

A lack of ambition?  A grim dose of reality?  No matter how you interpret it, embattled Research in Motion, Ltd. (TSE:RIM) CEO Thorsten Heins' recent remarks are a testament to how far the giant has fallen, even as it hopes to rise from the ashes.  

I. A Burning Platform

At a press unveil of beta hardware for the BlackBerry 10 platform, Mr. Heins said his company's short term goal is to get back to third place.  He remarks, "We have a clear shot at being the number three platform on the market. We're not just another open platform on the market, we are BlackBerry."

Three years ago hearing the CEO of RIM say that his company was shooting for third would have elicited confused chuckles.  Back in 2009, RIM was at the top of the market.  One of the most valuable tech stocks, RIM employed nearly 20,000 people globally.  It sold more smartphones that any other OEM -- in fact nearly 1 out of every 2 smartphones sold at the time was a BlackBerry.

Ex-RIM CEO Mike Lazardis's infamously remarked to Fortune in 2009 -- "Sometimes we have to put the brakes on.  We've shown that we can handle annual 100% growth. I'm not sure we could handle more than that."

The Rimdenberg has cruised from star to scorned. [Image Source: Jason Mick/DailyTech LLC]

Well RIM indeed hit the brakes.  It's been a tumultuous flaming crash ever since, with RIM's brand image going from glowing to garbage due to the company's failure to keep pace with competitors in pushing the hardware and software envelope.  Today less than 1 in 20 smartphones sold is a BlackBerry [source].  RIM has laid off nearly half its employees.  If you invested $22,000 USD in RIM back in 2008 you today would be left with less than $1,000 USD, thanks to the company's terrible tumble.

II. A Comeback?

But CEO Thorsten Heins is convinced his company's new platform will be superior to Google Inc.'s (GOOG) Android 4.1 "Jelly Bean", Microsoft Corp.'s (MSFT) Windows Phone 8 [1][2][3], and Apple, Inc.'s (AAPL) iOS 6.

He comments, "It has all the table stakes we need to have for consumer [success].  [Y]ou climb a mountain step by step.  I'm not thinking about BlackBerry being the number one smartphone, BlackBerry needs to be number one in mobile computing."

Thorsten Heins
RIM CEO Thorsten Heins would be happy to be in third place at this point. [Image Source: The Verge]

Unsurprisingly, much of Mr. Heins' critique of the competition focuses on Apple -- a brand darling that has arguably innovated the least since 2007 in the user interface department.  Much like Microsoft RIM feels that pushing apps into the background -- the strategy Apple uses -- hinders busy users as it increases wait times.  Both BlackBerry 10 and Windows Phone 8 feature persistent apps that are simultaneously running.  

RIM takes things even a step farther than Microsoft, though, displaying actual thumbnails of the running app in a "multitasking zone".  Of course, there are some downsides to this approach -- some customers may prefer a more stylized animated widget and there may be battery life penalties for rendering an actual thumbnail of each active app.

III. RIM Serenades Developers in Odd Pitch

In its latest in a series of bizarre marketing pitches RIM released a video alongside the event titled "Devs, BlackBerry Is Going To Keep On Loving You", which features an odd rock song about BlackBerry 10 and RIM's "transition".

The rather out-of-tune RIM crooner promises, "Don't be mislead, the launch is just ahead."

Of course RIM has been promising that since mid-2011, so whether it meets its Q1 2013 deployment target remains to be seen.  Whether developers -- and customers -- still have any love left for RIM also remains to be seen.

Sources: The Verge, YouTube [RIM]

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RE: Typical Mick anti-RIM trolling
By retrospooty on 9/26/2012 3:14:58 PM , Rating: 2
"Then IN THE COMMENTS you immediately post the huge troll post stating how much RIM sucks, how lame Pirks is and so on."

He would be correct.

"Retro tell me I'm right, I can't believe EVERYONE here enjoys Mick's "90% trolling 10% tech substance" style. Do YOU enjoy it too retro?"

I dont think you are right, I think you are totally nucking futz.

As far as Mick's articles... Yes, they are sometimes opinion based, but its a tech blog not a national news site FFS. If you dont like it dont read it. You are just bent out of shape because your opinion differs from his on RIM. On this issue you are wrong, and have been wrong every step of the way. Now, as I said would happen, even IT holdouts are dropping RIM. They are totally inept and have lost the ability to manage themselves and stay competitive. What abouot RIM's track record in the past 5 years makes you think they will get OS10 devices right from the start? It's already a year late per RIM plan, and that Plan was already 2 years late. RIM is going away. The problem they have right now is a lack of interested buyers. They want too much money for a product that is basically over.

RE: Typical Mick anti-RIM trolling
By Pirks on 9/26/12, Rating: -1
By Cheesew1z69 on 9/26/2012 4:21:15 PM , Rating: 2
I thought better of you.
I don't really think he cares...

RE: Typical Mick anti-RIM trolling
By Cheesew1z69 on 9/26/2012 4:23:30 PM , Rating: 1
I'm lost man, I don't understand his crazy motivation at all.
Of course you are, you are a little slow in the head...

RE: Typical Mick anti-RIM trolling
By Pirks on 9/26/2012 5:29:26 PM , Rating: 1
Buzz off and let adults talk kiddo, I'm more interested in opinion of retro than a juvenile clown like you

RE: Typical Mick anti-RIM trolling
By Cheesew1z69 on 9/26/2012 6:00:46 PM , Rating: 1
Adults, coming from you, now THAT is hilarious.

Juvenile clown, again, from you, hilarious considering you are the whiniest little bitch on here.

OMG JASON MICK IS BASHING RIM! QQ QQ...cry some fucking more you little bitch.

RE: Typical Mick anti-RIM trolling
By Pirks on 9/26/2012 6:44:51 PM , Rating: 1
Problem is he's bashing it in like 90% of his post, why doesn't he bash it in only 10% and leave the other 90% to tech substance?

RE: Typical Mick anti-RIM trolling
By Cheesew1z69 on 9/26/12, Rating: -1
RE: Typical Mick anti-RIM trolling
By Pirks on 9/26/2012 9:05:42 PM , Rating: 1
Not before you stop bitching like an ass raped whore about Apple in every thread here

RE: Typical Mick anti-RIM trolling
By Cheesew1z69 on 9/26/2012 9:17:32 PM , Rating: 2
Um. Yea. Once again, you show your idiocy and obviousness that you haven't a clue what you are talking about.

RE: Typical Mick anti-RIM trolling
By Pirks on 9/26/2012 9:34:18 PM , Rating: 2
Once again your clownish routine got boring and you failed to entertain me like before

RE: Typical Mick anti-RIM trolling
By retrospooty on 9/26/2012 6:18:24 PM , Rating: 2
Dood, my eyes are in pain from reading your post. They literally hurt right now. I am gonna go get some Advil.

RE: Typical Mick anti-RIM trolling
By Pirks on 9/26/2012 6:37:39 PM , Rating: 2
Hehe good way to weasel your way out of replying my inconvenient question. Talk to ya later then, when Mick will post his 90% trolling 10% substance anti-RIM post again.

By theapparition on 9/27/2012 3:27:24 PM , Rating: 2
Perhaps 90% of the article is negative because they've lost 90% of their stock value.

The problem with mobile platforms is the rate of adoption and turnover. Every 2 years people are upgrading. $1-$5 apps aren't enough to tie everyone into an ecosystem (although I pity those dumping $2k into iTunes).

I'll give RIM a fair shake, but they've got to wow everyone. And I mean WOW. Bringing something up to par isn't going to cut it. Being slightly better doesn't do it. It has to have features that have never been seen before. Usability that just destroys the competition.

With that said, I don't see much hope for RIM. I'm hoping they can pull it off, but I highly doubt it.

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