Just another WordPress.com site


Here are my top 10 reasons why RIM (the company that makes BlackBerry cell phones) will go bankrupt:

1)     It’s not Apple

2)     The company is built on appearance and not substance

3)     It’s not Apple

4)     Its own people know that the ship is sinking as surely as the Titanic

5)     It’s not Apple

6)     It follows but never manages to lead anymore

7)     It’s not Apple

8)     It’s software makes Nokia’s soon-to-be-dead Symbian operating system look like a masterpiece

9)     It’s not Apple

10)  The only thing protecting it from extinction has been destroyed by Apple

If you want to see a company whose end is pretty much guaranteed, then look at Research In Motion (aka the company that used to rule the cell phone universe with BlackBerry).

I should note that I had a BlackBerry Curve (still one of the greatest phones ever invented), but when it broke, I bought a BlackBerry Bold eight months ago. Did I want to buy the Bold? Nooooooo.  As soon as I held it and tried it, I hated it. Blackberry managed to take the best of the Curve and destroy it. Yet still I bought it, and that is why RIM really needs to listen to people like me.

Why? It’s not because I’m great or that I’m a genius.

Rather, it is because I was part of something called BlackBerry Customer Loyalty. This was not an organized group, but it was a large number of people who had used BlackBerry phones and realized what an amazing thing a smartphone was and is. I convinced almost everyone I knew to switch to a BlackBerry phone 3 years ago.

If BlackBerry had any chance of becoming a widely used cell phone, it needed to keep people like me, because it knew about something I’ll call the Customer Loyalty Strikeout Rule. 3 is one of those magical numbers. Yes, it’s odd, it’s prime, and it is part of the famous Fibonacci sequence. In baseball, a batter tries to hit a ball thrown towards him (hopefully not at him). If he is unsuccessful after
swinging the bat 3 times, he is out, and his turn is done.

Customers are kind of the same way. If we really love a place or a product, we will use it, and then if we have a bad experience, we will think that it’s an aberration. Why? Because humans are loyal. However, if we have a second bad experience, then we become like the baseball player with 2 strikes: we start to tense up. If the company or product fails us a third time, then we abandon that company.

One thing I have realized is that BlackBerry phones have managed to really screw everything up.

Strike 1. Instead of the perfectly spaced keys (and I have rather large fingers) of the Curve, the Bold has the left half of the keyboard slanted in one direction and the right half slanted in the opposite direction. This design makes sense if you are only going to use the fingers on your left hand for the left side of the keyboard and the fingers on your right for the right side of it. If you watch many people text with their phones, you’ll notice that people tend to cross-over a lot (i.e. they use a finger on the left hand to hold down the “alt” key while typing a number on the left side of the keyboard with their right fingers. In contrast, all the keys on my old Curve were flat.

Strike 2. Also, now that the space between keys has been eliminated on the Bold, it’s incredibly easy to press the wrong key when you are texting. In short, it’s terrible. The only thing that is worse is the iPhone/iTouch’s on-screen keyboard.

Strike 3. And replacing the trackball with the touchpad? Awful. The touchpad is too sensitive.

Strike 4. To make a bad situation worse, the problem with the keypad carried over to the desktop on the phone. The old operating system had each icon clearly separate from the next one. It was a pleasure to look at. But the operating system that came with the Bold put each icon incredibly close to the next one so that the screen always looked cluttered.

Fortunately, RIM has fixed this problem with its latest release. But it has replaced it with a new problem: a desktop that is just way too busy.

Strike 5. But the primary reason why RIM is heading towards bankruptcy is because its products seem to suffer from the same problem: all beauty and no brains. No joke. Their products look good but the software is horrible. This is the problem with the current BlackBerry smartphone operating system and by all reports, it continues to the new BlackBerry Playbook.

How did this happen? The problem is that BlackBerry is so busy trying to copy and catch up to Apple and Android that it forgot what got it to the top: making the user’s life easier. My feeling with BlackBerry now is that the phone is all about trying to use lots of colors and shapes to make the phone seem interesting. The problem is that this is fine if you’re 10 years old, but when you are busy running around, you want something that is simple and elegant.

 

Here are a few examples of bad software.

1)  Oftentimes when I go to a website and have to put in my zip code, the old BlackBerry operating system “knew” that the field was a numbers field. Therefore, even though each number button also doubled as a certain letter of the alphabet, I just had to press the buttons corresponding to the correct numbers. There was no need to simultaneously press the “alt” key to select the number part of the key. With the latest operating system, the phone has become “dumber” and now I have to press the “alt” key while typing in my zip code. When a company manages to make a smartphone dumber, then you know the company has major problems.

2)  When I go to websites, the text is sometimes huge and sometimes so tiny that no one can read it. Look at the iPhone. If you go to the same websites, you’ll notice that the fonts amongst websites are displayed at a uniform size. I suppose that the current version of the BlackBerry operating system is superior to the version just before it which made all text microscopic. But I wonder why BlackBerry couldn’t continue to use the same software that they had 3 years ago? That software worked great for reading pages.

3)  Scrolling down when reading something on aBlackBerry is like watching a car running on cheap fuel: its very jerky. How can you make a phone with such a terrible system for reading websites?

 

Maybe many of you know people who have BlackBerry phones. Maybe some of you own stock in RIM. Here is a short history of why the company has been so popular.

Why has RIM been so popular? It depends who you ask. If you ask a terrorist organization, they love BlackBerry because governments (except now for Saudi Arabia) cannot monitor text messages sent on BlackBerry Messenger. If you think that Apple’s Steve Jobs is secretive, BlackBerry guards its servers because it has known that when the company was started and was primarily used by businesspeople, their customers (mostly corporations) wanted a secure way for their employees to communicate.

If you ask a foreign student from Latin America or the Middle East, BlackBerry Messenger is a free way to constantly stay in contact with their family and friends back home. In many ways, BlackBerry kind of paved the way for FaceBook.

If you ask corporate executives, they will give the same reasoning as the terrorists: BlackBerry Messenger is a great way to have private conversations that the government will not be monitoring.

But two things have neutralized this advantage. First, an app called Whatsapp provides a link between iPhones and BlackBerry phones. Translation? BlackBerry no longer has this unique function. Second, Apple is going to be rolling out their own version of free texting. Translation? Adios RIM.

Has RIM improved its BlackBerry phones? I hear that their latest phone is better, but the fact is that it still can’t compete with Apple.

Currently a BlackBerry phone has only two advantages over an iPhone: the removable battery and ability to add more memory.

However, all the negatives mentioned above combined PLUS a horrible BlackBerry App Store make RIM a losing proposition.

Historically, BlackBerry was a status symbol for investment people. Just to show you how low RIM has fallen, I went into a Fidelity Investment Center on Boylston Avenue in the heart of Boston, MA. I asked the Fidelity representative about problems I was having using Fidelity’s website on my BlackBerry Bold. What did she say? “Oh, that’s because we don’t have a dedicated app for BlackBerry. We only have those kinds of apps for Apple and Android.”

Huh? For a phone that was originally designed for the business world, how can it be so primitive for checking stock prices and positions? Answer: the company is completely out of touch with its customers.

 

I spend a lot of time talking with people and getting the pulse of the average person. Why? First, I enjoy talking with people. Second, it helps me better predict which companies to invest in. Third, it lets me compare my own thoughts with others about why something is great or horrible.

 

One question I always ask is the “all things being equal question”. It goes like this: If all things were equal, what would you want to be? Folks, if everyone were paid the same salary, do you really think that most people would want to be doctors or lawyers? No way. But understanding what is someone’s true desire is a fantastic way to understand what really drives them or could drive them.

So, I ask this question: If you could use any cell phone you want and that the monthly fee was the same for all of them, which cell phone would you use?

The overwhelming majority of people have the same response: Apple’s iPhone.

Of the people who did not choose the iPhone, I asked a second question: have you ever used an iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad from Apple Corporation? Everyone except one person from that group confessed that they had never tried an Apple product.

There are a few key findings from this informal study.

1)  BlackBerry’s only hope is great overseas sales.

2)  The only reason BlackBerry has its current market share is because of all cell phone users in America, only those on the AT&T and Verizon Wireless networks have access to an Apple iPhone.

3)   For a certain percentage of people who have not switched to the iPhone, it’s not because BlackBerry is better. Rather it’s because these people have never tried the iPhone.

4)   Since this study was conducted in America, there will always be one or two people who always try to answer against common sense. Trying to be unique is part of the American ethos.

 

Quite honestly, RIM is so out of touch and behind the curve that the company has no hope of regaining its luster under its current leadership. It’s amazing that just two years ago, it seemed like everyone I knew had a BlackBerry. And what was amazing about it was that not only was BlackBerry the only real player in the market, but the company was producinggreat cell phones.

Those times are gone.

I can’t wait until the new iPhone comes out on Verizon Wireless, because I’ll be one of the first to get it. Bye RIM, it was nice knowing ya.

Comments on: "10 Reasons Why RIM (BlackBerry) Will Go Bankrupt" (70)

  1. RIM posted the highest net earnings ever last quarter. You need to learn the difference between stock worth and financial distress. Just because the company has less interest in ownership does not mean that they are in financial trouble. Furthermore, they sold more BlackBerry’s than ever before last quarter and the release of the 9900 is one of the most anticipated smart-phones ever.

    I’m just finishing up an analysis of their company for business school when I found your over-simplified and, frankly, stupid, blog while searching for more information.

    Once I’m done this essay I will be buying as much stock as I can afford for my portfolio.

    I’m sure you didn’t expect anyone intelligent to read this, so, I’m sorry.

    • Some people don’t like criticism and they might have deleted this comment. Opposing ideas are important, and I don’t fear them.

      Kelvin, I hope for your sake that you don’t have that much available money for buying RIM unless you are going to short them. The problem is that you are a beancounter. You look simplistically at past performance based simply on total revenue as your justification for thinking that RIM is worth investing every available penny that you have? Are you seriously going to tell me that you believe RIMM’s future is bright? Your paper not might get a great grade from your professor. He’ll probably tell you that as nice as total unit sales is important for the current balance sheet, market share is also a critical indicator for future growth and investment. Are you seriously going to tell me that RIM is a great company to invest in when its own press release warns investors that quarterly revenues will most likely drop when their next earnings statement appears?

      How about the fact that a year ago RIM held 19.7% of global smartphone sales which fell to 12.9% in the first quarter? Total units sold is a like a hit of crack cocaine: it’s intoxicatingly brief. You also probably did not take into account that RIM’s sales are artificially high. It’s a terrible prognostic sign when a company is losing major amounts of market share despite the fact that Apple’s iPhone still is not widely sold in all countries whereas RIM has saturated their market. Look at the U.S. as a prime example. If you want to see RIM get crushed in the future, then watch what happens when the next iPhone (the iPhone 4S/5) appears. I as well as most of my friends on Verizon Wireless did not buy the iPhone 4 because we were anticipating that the next iPhone would be released sometime in the summer. We are not alone. Almost every major article about Verizon’s sales of the iPhone 4 say that it has been underwhelming. It’s because of two reasons: sub-optimal timing of the release and also the fact that the iPhone 4 was the first version of the iPhone to be made for Verizon’s network.

      There’s a part of me that’s incredibly sad watching RIM fall apart. I think that they made one of the best smartphones ever in the BlackBerry Curve. I said so in my post. But I have not met anyone who has used a BlackBerry and also tried an iPhone and said that the the BlackBerry is superior. I don’t even know if you use a BlackBerry.

      Let’s look at the realities here when we are going to project the future for RIM. Several high-level executives (Brian Wallace, Keith Pardy, and Paul Kalbfleisch) of their marketing department have left in the past few months. A growing number of app makers (recently Mobile Roadie and Seesmic) are refusing to create any new apps for BlackBerry. Heck, I live in Boston and many people here use apps to figure out when the next bus or train is arriving. Guess what? Apple had the first app called “Catch The Bus”, then it had the second app with “Open MBTA”, and then they started to make it for Android. If you look right now, even Windows Mobile 7 has an app to find out this up-to-date info. Who doesn’t have an app? BlackBerry.

      When a company wants to market its smartphone but app development companies are unwilling to create and support apps for that phone’s platform, the future doesn’t look bright.

      I didn’t include RIM’s numbers for 2010 because they are only relevant for a ship that is slowly sinking. This ship is on the fast ride down. Have you looked at RIM’s stockchart for the past year? The fact that they were down 1.5% today at $27.80 is not wholly signficant by itself, but when you look at their clear downward trend, their troubled leadership, their talent drain, app makers not making apps for them, their horrible software (which I have to use on a daily basis until the iPhone 4S/5 appears), the fact that their new Playbook has the same buggy software as their smartphones, an absolutely atrocious app store, and the loss of their last exclusive domain (Blackberry Messenger), the picture is clear: you would have to be insane to say that you are going to invest heavily in this company.

      You say that the reviews of the 9900 are wonderful. I disagree. The 9900 is basically the BlackBerry Bold with a faster processor and a touchscreen. Although I do like a physical QWERTY keyboard (something that Apple refuses to bend on), the fact that BlackBerry chose to keep the Bold’s keyboard for the 9900 and that many people have commented about how difficult this keyboard is to use (compared to the Curve and even the Pearl) is more proof that they are out of touch.

      If you think that the 9900 is highly anticipated, then you have absolutely no idea about the anticipation building around the next release of the iPhone.

      I’ve met people like you, and so I know that no matter how many winning arguments I put out here, and no matter if RIM’s market share slides down to the single digits, you will never admit that you are wrong. It’s sad really.

      In the end, what it comes down to is this: where is RIM’s stock heading. You say that the company is in financial distress. I disagree. RIM has substantial capital reserve and recent downtrends won’t change that. There are times where a company’s financials are not accurately represented in their stock value (e.g. Lorillard trading at $99 last week). Yes, the market can be abnormally finicky at times. But because I actually use a BlackBerry and an iPod Touch on a daily basis, and because it’s so clear to me that even for investing the BlackBerry (the original business smartphone) lags far behind.

      I understand that it’s far more interesting to write a paper that goes against the grain, but for you to suggest that RIM is far stronger than everyone else thinks is ludicrous. To be honest (and I never thought I would hear myself say this), I believe that Nokia is far better positioned for the future than RIM. Nokia just has to survive until January 2012 and then they’ll turn a major corner. Instead of putting your money in RIM, you would be far wiser investing in Nokia. I’m not saying that Nokia’s success is a sure thing, but all indications point that way.

      Also, the purpose of this lengthy response is not to question your intelligence. I think that anyone who calls himself/herself intelligent has some “issues”. But people who just look at simplistic past earnings numbers and numbers of units sold are arguing in a vacuum. These people would argue that the Fibonacci sequence is important for investing, and they would be 100% wrong. It is not the sequence itself that is important. It’s the ratios of the number in the sequence which are key. This is why market share is so important.

      Finally, when someone takes a losing company with problems at almost every turn and says that he is going to invest every dollar possible into it, I have a pretty strong suspicion that this is the sort of person who probably either has no money in the stock market, or just plays virtual stock market simulation games. RIM’s stock might be undervalued now, but that doesn’t change the fact that this company as it is has very little chance for success.

      Also, when someone starts using superlative phrases such as “the 9900 is one of the most anticipated smart-phones ever”, I start getting visions of the chef Gordon Ramsey who uses superlatives without any specificity or meaning. I think what you meant to say is that “the 9900 is one of the most anticipated BlackBerry models amongst current BlackBerry users”. You seriously cannot even begin to imply that the BlackBerry 9900 is in the same league of anticipation as the next iPhone.
      Here’s a bet I’m willing to make. Send your paper to Jim Cramer (yes, the “Mad Money” guy) and also send a copy of this post, and if he says that you are right and that he agrees that RIM’s stock is going to soar because RIM is such a great company and will be greater in the future, I’ll be more than happy to write you a check for $1000. I know you would never take me up on this bet, because when you really do the research and analysis of this company, you will realize that without major changes (and I’m not even sure firing one of the co-CEOs is going far enough), RIM cannot compete. If their phones were bad but their operating system was great, I might be more hopeful. But the fact that every update of their operating system makes it worse (more bloated and difficult to navigate), it’s clear that even Microsoft Windows Mobile (Mango) is already far ahead of BlackBerry.

      • What can i say “hogger15″ ……. you blasted away like a loose cannon.

        Im a big BB fan but others are moving to fast and leaving me behind.

        ….whats your view on HTC?

      • Hi Nav,

        Trust me that I wish that RIMM was doing better.
        Since BB was my first smartphone, I have a nostalgic connection to it.
        However, when a phone does not match the user, it’s ridiculous to hold onto it.
        It’s kind of like a guy who keeps calling his ex-girlfriend and hoping they can get back together again (even when she is married and has kids with another guy).
        You can’t make the square peg fit in the round hole.

        I think that HTC makes fantastic stuff.
        However, there is one major problem lurking on the horizon: Motorola.

        I’ve tried a few new Motorola phones and I’m impressed.
        The problem with HTC in the future is that I find it unlikely that Google bought Motorola if it were not planning to wipe out all other Android phone makers.
        Basically, Google has seen how much money a company like Apple can make when it has a monopoly on the device and the operating system.
        I think this is where Google is heading with Motorola.
        So, for the short term, I think HTC is great.
        But a few years later, the company could be in trouble.

      • Idiotic review. Undue criticism. Another apple Fanboi on coolaid. I have used BBs, gone to iphone, and came back to BBs. You used the curve, then used a bold and complained it for the difference in design. What were you trying to type on it with…..your feet??? The trackpad is sensitivity, but there is such a thing called options wherein you can lower the sensitivity of the trackpad. It’s only logic, but your article defies it anyway. For those people who liked the curve, there is a newer version of the curve and they should stick to it, not buy a bold and crib that it’s not a curve. It isn’t. The curve still has the spacious keypad as before.

        I want a phone that can make calls, text, email, etc. flawlessly. I don’t want a music player that makes dropped calls or comes from a developer who missed a function such as copy and paste. I dont want an app market that has 20000000000000 apps out of which 53094928 are fart mimicking apps and another 2340982 are apps that calculate tips for me at restaurants. How will an app know how the service at the restaurant was??? I dont want a phone whose icons make some sort of a dance before the the app opens. I click, the app opens, that’s it. If you phone was laggy, there is such a thing called firmware upgrade. You can do it yourself and you’re done.

        RIM is definitely not ahead of the other platforms, but their hardware is among the best. They software is the most stable. I go months without having to restart my phone. Iphone is more of a herd behavior (it’s not apple, it’s not apple, it’s not apple, it’s not apple…..lol). You like iphone because rather than acknowledging that their design had a major flaw, they said that people are holding the phone in a wrong manner and so have dropped calls. Seriously, how many ways are there to hold the phone??

        BB isnt the best, but there are still people who swear by it and are not herd members.

        Maxi

      • I understand where you’re coming from. No company is perfect (and that includes Apple). But it’s hard to argue that RIMM is making BlackBerry work better. It seems that every software update makes their phones worse. For example, it used to be easy to just go to a website and read stuff on a BlackBerry. The font sizes of the text were always about the same size. But now the size of the font goes from tiny to huge.

        Also, remember that BlackBerry was initially created for business people. Well, now that BlackBerry Messenger is not the only game in town, I see more and more businesspeople using the iPhone or Android.

        For my purposes, I need certain medical and investment apps. Blackberry just does not have them. As for the plethora of apps out there, I agree that the majority of them are useless. But when you look at the ones that really matter. There is no doubt that BlackBerry is hopelessly behind.

        The other big negative is what happens if your phone has a problem. My BlackBerry Curve and Bold both have had hardware problems, and the final result is that Verizon Wireless has to ship them to get fixed. In contrast, if I had an iPhone, I could just go to the nearest Apple Store and have it fixed immediately.

        You talk about upgrading the software. I’ve been upgrading the software regularly, and it’s made my phone worse.

        Going with the iPhone is technically herd mentality. But that’s like saying that people who decide to fly from Boston to Los Angeles are in a herd mentality because they’ve opted to take a plane rather than a bus. The plane is obviously better, and the iPhone is obviously better.

        One last point is that you talk about the iPhone dropping calls. That’s true if you have the AT&T ones. But I was very clear in saying that people I know who have the Verizon iPhone say that it works perfectly.

        Even though I don’t agree with you, I appreciate you taking the time to comment.

    • here goes your stock dude…13$

    • Amazing you keep mentioning that they are not apple ,is this the same apple that keep producing iphones that are far to delicate ,easy to break have bad reception and well into double figures for common failts for every handset let me tell you something i have a non apple phone and its the best phone i have ever used including the iphone , which phone ? the samsung galaxy s2

      • Hey Mark,
        First, the Samsung Galaxy S2 is a nice phone. Second, enjoy the malware and the fragmentation. Third, you should look at the date that the post was written. It was written long before the Galaxy S2 was even released. Fourth, do us all a favor and drop your Galaxy S2 phone and let’s see what happens. Fifth, if you had the iPhone 4 and had bad reception, could it be because you were using AT&T in a place like NYC or San Francisco? It’s amazing how defensive Android users are. I think that every Android user is hoping that they haven’t backed the wrong horse. Let’s hope that you aren’t also a Sprint user, because then you’d really know what it’s like to go from one bad cell phone company to a worse one.

    • kelvin.
      you are an MBA idiot.

      • Hi AAAA,
        Well, that’s the difference between someone like Kelvin who just deals in theory versus someone like me who actually invests sizable amounts of real cash. I guess that he will eventually learn that if a great company doesn’t always equal a great stock to purchase, then a good company can be an even worse stock to acquire. Thanks for commenting.

    • Bearatts said:

      How did that buying as much stock as you can theory work out for you? Lol. Android eats apples and shits blackberries. Better take what little money you’ve left and try to recover with Google stock.

      • Hi Bearatts,
        I hope that he didn’t do invest all of his money in RIMM because when I see his kind of statement, I know that he has absolutely no experience as a real investor (as opposed to a person who just plays with paper trades). Thanks for reading the post.

  2. I like reading stuff like this, always makes me smile that americans think they can rule the world. If it happens in the states then for sure the rest of the world will follow… Guess what, no the rest of the world doesn’t….

    Working at a rather huge dealership for mobile phones I have to agree that Blackberry has undergone a huge salesdrop and with huge I must say HUUUGE. But now for the interesting part in this. Most people (>80%) that dropped their blackberry have gone to a iphone while the rest now use a different brand.

    What kind of people changed to an apple? You could have guessed it, Business people. And the 10 year olds all switched to whatever brand is popular, they tend to change brands within 6 months. So that group of people is far from being interesting in these kind of analyses.

    Back to the business people, one by one. Or rather said, company after company switch from Blackberry to Iphone. The first couple of months everything works like a charm, but then battery life becomes an issue. As we all know, iphone battery life just plainly sucks. The sales dude that is in a two our conferencecall regarding some new products can’t finish his conversation without plugging in some power. Well, who cares, sales dude is still happy with his shiney gadget. Now the sales dude goes on a holiday with wife and kids and the iphone firstly has no reception because of the stupid way the antenna was build (version 4). And for some reason people tend to throw with stuff when it doesn’t work like they want it to work. What will happen with the iphone glass? Correct it brakes! That’s when they get back to us and start complaining about the quality, but still they want it fixed. No problem. We can repair every phone no problem, customer (business or consumer) can use a temp phone whilest the phone in question is being repaired. Guess what, will the iphone sim fit in a nokia, blackberry, sony, whatever? Nope! So this salesdude will mis out on some deals because his stupid iphone broke down.

    After this happens a few times at a company then the bosses will finally get their sence back and switch away from the gadget to get a more sensible phone. Most company’s that switched away from blackberry to iphone are already switching again at this moment. Not saying all are switching back to BB, but like 50% is switching back to BB, while another 50% is switching to nokia.

    And what if you take a look at eastern asia where half the world population lives. Do they use expensive iphones? Nope, they use bb knock off’s. Not even the iphone knockoff.

    Sure RIM will get into some rough waters, but bankrupt? Who are you kidding?? If you want to listen to a mp3 or watch a movie on your iphone then you’ll have to pay for it. Unlike the US almost the entire rest of the world allows their citizen to download music and movies for their own use. This is being expanded everyday. More and more countries see benefits in this structure. So when apple stops selling iphones because the product is just plain crap and they stop selling music through itunes then what will happen?

    Am I suggesting apple will go bankrupt? Nope, they make gadgets nowadays and everybody likes gadgets when they are new. Am I suggesting that apple will stop producing the iphone, yess I am. And they will stop it long before RIM will be in rough waters.

    • Hi Johan,

      Aside from the first line of your comment, I liked the rest of it.

      Dude, you have to stop trying to create interpretations that just aren’t there.
      You obviously seem to have an anti-American slant.

      I’m not out there saying that Apple is great because it’s an American company.
      I’m saying that it has a great product.
      Is the iPhone’s battery great? No. Most people know that.
      Is there a reason why more companies are switching to it?
      Yes. It just works better.

      Are more people in East Asia using it?
      Just look at South Korea and Thailand to get an idea (and of course, there are the Chinese knockoffs like the Hi-Phone).

      One thing to understand is that I’m hoping that some company rises quickly to push Apple down.
      Monopolies make me uneasy.
      Of all the mobile phone companies out there, the one I would bet some money on for the future is Nokia.
      When Nokia phones come out with Windows 8 Mobile, they have a chance of regaining market share.

      I agree that for some people, they don’t need an iPhone.
      If a person is just using the phone to make calls and text, then there are plenty of better options.
      But, if a person is using the phone for business (especially investing), then it’s tough to beat.

  3. Apple SUCKS dude =|

    • One thing that BB beats Apple on is the real keyboard.
      I hate the Apple touchscreen keyboard.

      However, since I don’t spend all day typing into my phone, the benefits of the iPhone far outweigh the positives of BB.

      Also, it’s part of American culture that no matter how popular and great something is, someone will criticize it.

      • Hogger 15, if you checked out this app called “Siri,” which is only for the iPhone 4s, you can voice command it to text others without you doing the work. From my experiences of having a black berry, I have to say that I am waiting for my contract to expire, so I can upgrade to the iPhone 4s.

      • Hi Ariel,
        Thanks for the comment. Actually, if you look at the date I wrote the article, it was several months ago. After I wrote the article, I bought an iPhone 4S the day it debuted in October. Have been loving it. Here’s a tip: don’t buy the iPhone 4S. We are almost into March, and some rumors have the iPhone 5 coming out in July or August. I would wait because the iPhone 5 is rumored to have a bigger screen and a 4G LTE modem. My guess is that it might also be waterproof which by itself is a fantastic reason to wait a couple of extra months after your current contract expires.

      • Actually Apple is not an American company, they’re based there but they are 100% not an American company over 65 billion dollars of the over 90 billion dollars they have are in off shore banks not being taxed by the American Government, they employ over 400 hundred thousand people outside of the USA and only employ 43 thousand in the USA

        I reviewed hundreds of devices and the playbook and iPad are the best, yes both the devices don’t have SD mem slot etc.. but the over all feel and look and experience are the best, This can be said for the phones as well, and not to mention the BB is the most secure phone in the World, that’s why the American Military will not use anything but the BB, other US Government departments are going with the iPhone only because the US is in Job protection mode; also BB are still ahead in Sales in Canada over the iPhone, slim margin but still ahead, also the Android market will be opened to the BB which will bring the APP size up to around 500,000 thousand.

        Just so you know the Canadian Government has recently named RIM a necessary technology for Canada and will block any take over attempt outside of Canada.

        If I was RIM I’d get out of the global market and go back to a private company so they don’t have to listen to the wining share holders.

        The stock market needs major reform…… I have never seen a more corrupt system!

      • Hi Rayhaw,

        A couple of things. If we start basing a company’s “nationality” on the geographic location where they employ most of their people, many U.S. corporations would immediately become “foreign”. Again, as someone who evaluates company strictly from an equities investment perspective, BB is in big trouble.

        Your information is a little dated. The U.S. military will be deploying modified Android smartphones starting this year. They have been testing this system for the past two years and the U.S. Army’s Brigade Modernization Command has revealed that they started using these phones over a year ago and will expand their use. This is further bad news for BB.

        And more bad news is on the way for BB. The real problem is that no one in a position of power at RIM wants to step forward and say, “Yeah, we majorly screwed up with BB.” That’s really what investors want to hear, and then investors want to hear specific plans that BB has to get its act together. Unfortunately, the new CEO is trying to avoid criticizing the former co-CEOs. My hope is that maybe BB has some sort of game-changing plan that they are keeping under wraps. My gut tells me that they have been so damaged by the stunning greed of their middle managers who basically let the company sink.

        I’m conflicted about the idea of RIM returning to being a private company. On one hand, it would be good for RIM to have some breathing space away from all the negative press. On the other hand, if RiM had stayed a private company all along, this whole situation might have been worse. Obviously, the former co-CEOs just couldn’t wrap their heads around the idea that just because a company remains profitable doesn’t mean that the company is on the correct trajectory. Lost market shares to the extent that BB has declined will be hard to regain.

        As for the last comment, I completely agree. The U.S. stock market needs major reform. The heavy reliance of using machines and computer algorithms to make trades just increases the chance of a repeat flash crash. The fact that the U.S. Congress has just passed a bill limiting (but probably not really excluding) congresspeople from conducting insider trading maneuvers and the recent indictments of various fund managers for insider trading on Dell Computers points to how unbalanced information really is.

        Thanks for commenting.

      • Quote “Hi Rayhaw, A couple of things. If we start basing a company’s “nationality” on the geographic location where they employ most of their people, many U.S. corporations would immediately become “foreign”.” This is one of my points most ARE foreign, what countries are we supporting here? I’d rather support a company where most of the employees are working in the originating country mainly ours! Thats why we need reforms not just in the stock market but on how Jobs are created etc…
        Quote “Your information is a little dated. The U.S. military will be deploying modified Android smartphones starting this year. They have been testing this system for the past two years and the U.S. Army’s Brigade Modernization Command has revealed that they started using these phones over a year ago and will expand their use” This is for non- essential personnel and it a very old pilot test, companies are always pilot testing new technolgy, and this is the case with the US military, also remember Anonymous was able to hack phones from the FBI, I wonder what phone they were using?
        Quote “…that just because a company remains profitable doesn’t mean that the company is on the correct trajectory.” Actually opposite is can be true. We will see in the coming months what will happen with BB. Proof is in the pudding.
        As far as the congress goes or the US economy goes take a look at http://www.USdebtclock.org sources are from the US Federal Reserve; the US Unfunded Liabilites for example are over 100 trillion dollars in the RED we got to stop farming out all our manufacturing… and mis-managment of the North American Economy. It’s a Wall Street Government, where the few FAT CATS get fatter and the rest just well basically are struggling, remember there are over 1.4 million people living below poverty (I mean bread and water for breakfast, lunch and dinnner) in the US
        Thanks for reading my post

      • As I’ve said in previous comments to others, as much as I think that BB’s future is bleak unless RIM sells it to a company like Samsung (and there was a possibility of that happening except RIM was asking for too much money), there’s always a chance that BB will turn the corner.

        On a sentimental note, I appreciate the fact that you want to support companies that make stuff in Canada (although you probably know that the majority of BB Storms are made in Mexico, and the lower BB class C phones are made in Hungary), but the fact remains that as long as China continues to devalue its currency, manufacturing workers there will be lucky to get paid $280 per month, and there is no way that U.S. workers can compete salary-wise for those jobs. I’d like to see jobs return to the U.S., and in some areas its happening. But it’s going to be slow, and it’s tough for me to support a company like RIM that is making money but just doing a lousy job of keeping their BB phones in the race with the iPhone and the Android-based ones.

        Yes, we will see about RIM’s stock. I’ve learned the hard way that there are oftentimes major disconnects between a great stock to buy and how solid the company is. RIM is still profitable, but the BB phone line is killing them, and they are going to continue hemorrhaging money on the Playbook. First impressions as bad as Playbook 1.0 was are hard to overcome, especially when everyone keeps reading about how another big enterprise company is switching to the iPad.

        We definitely agree about the U.S. debt situation. If you read some of the stuff I’ve written about Greece, I’m working on a post about the U.S. as well. What’s clear is that the world – not just the U.S. – is overextended. Wars are expensive not just in the short-run but also in the long-run. Think about all the billions of dollars in disability payments and treatment will be needed for all the soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan. And honestly, what did we gain from either of those wars except for an enormous debt and the chance to try out new military technology in a live-fire situation? Meanwhile, we have too many special interest groups running the show in Washington. I agree with you completely. I still don’t know how the U.S. Supreme Court could rule that Super PACs are legal. And this gets back to my intense frustration with the Occupy Movement. They should have converted their activism into political strength and pushed for reform. Instead, what did they really accomplish? Not much.

        Anyhow, I do appreciate your comments. I don’t mind that people disagree with me as long as they have something to back up their opinions. So thanks for taking the time to post your comments.

      • Actually I Iump RIM in with the other foreign companies as I call them. The playbook that was just updated brings it up to par with the iPad 2, I just reviewed them both, and actually the trend seems that enterprise companies that were going to the iPad are having second thoughts, I work for a company that has over 480 thousand employees, they started rolling out the iPad 2, they got to the first 300 and are now having second thoughts about it, the iPad 2 just cannot in this case support an environment built on Microsoft products and Engineering applications like Finite analysis etc… and it’s not just Canada I support but the USA as well, I am here in Canada right now, and am supporting Canadians too. Canada it seems is far better off debt wise then the US why because they have policies and some of them actually work but I will admit Canada is a small fry compared to the US. I do appreciate your opinions as well but it’s easy to hit someone when there are down, but the real test of a company is when they can pull themselves together without any outside help, I remember when Apple just about died before Microsoft bailed them out, take a look at this video where Steve Jobs talks about a partner, which was Microsoft at the time, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WxOp5mBY9IY I could have said the same thing about Apple when their chips were down , Here we see Steve Jobs & the almost bankrupt at the time Apple Computer making a temporary deal with Bill Gates & Microsoft. The crowd was not too happy about it. That was 1997, let’s see what happens to RIM and let’s see if they partner with anyone or not. Actually Microsoft was very good to Apple and still writes some of their code.
        Thanks Again for reading my post.

      • Thanks Rayhaw. By the way, just so you don’t think I’m someone completely infatuated with Apple, my computer is a several-month-old Dell XPS 15 laptop, although how much longer that will continue to be the case is in question, but more on that later. As for your company’s hesitation, it isn’t the only one. US Air Force Special Operations Command has cancelled its order for 2,861 iPad 2s, and one has to wonder about the Air Force’s Air Mobility Command’s future order of 18,000 iPad 2s. Maybe they are having second thoughts about using the GoodReader app, but then, maybe they have realized that with the dramatically improved screen coming out on the iPad 3, why the heck would they buy the iPad 2? We’ll see.

      • I hear you Hogger15, I actually don’t care what I use as far as devices go, I have an iPad 2 and iPod Touch a BB, dell computers and iMac and also have a few laptops running different Linux/Unix flavors, because I am in IT Business I have to be able to look at all devices, they all have something to offer and they all have their short comings. As I heard on the TV series Cheers one time it’s a DOG eat DOG world out there and some companies a wearing milk bone underwear, ok not the exact quote but you know what I mean…
        Take care and thanks for reading my post again

  4. YES. YES. YES. *AGREES*
    *NODS IN AGREEMENT*

  5. Why didn’t you just get another curve?…

    • Hi Ghost,

      Good question. I tried but it was shocking how cheaply RIMM made the new curve.
      I was in the Verizon Wireless store for a good amount of time putting the new Curve through its paces, and it was awful.

  6. Lol! I bet that guy (Kelvin) who bought RIM back in June after his B-school paper is feeling pretty dumb now. But when it comes to investing you always have to learn the hard way………. many many times.

    • The problem is a simple one: writing a paper about a company does not make someone an expert at picking stocks.
      A bigger man would apologize, but I think that too many people are afraid of being wrong.
      Honestly, I hope he didn’t invest in RIMM because I don’t like seeing people get crushed in the market.
      Unfortunately, my friend just told me today that her boyfriend thought he had “beaten” the stock market when he bought Netflix (NFLX) a few days ago.
      Heavy sigh….

  7. I see this is a typical Apple user. Have you every wondered what the i stands for. IDIOT Phone. Simple phone controlled by the designer so you cant do what you want with it. Cant change the battery cant take the back off when it glitches. Unless you totally strip it down. RIM will not go bust because its the biggest business phone in the world that dont die a death when you run 4 apps at the same time. Rim out sell iphone and Android todate. The phones havent failed.. The company hasnt failed. The server failed … When its repaired it wont fail again. Then it will again Out sell Iphone and all other phones that TRY. 10 reasons why Apple will go bust

    1 : Battery life is shit.
    2 : Signal on the phone is Crap and lower than any other handset side by side.
    3 : Weak glass screen that breaks with little pressure.
    4 : Can only be activated and backed up online. So no internet at home you cant restore your phone or back it up.
    5 : If your phone crashes and comes up insert lead to itunes you have no phone contact till you log on to your computer again.
    6 : Doesnt support multi bluetooth devices only Apple products can pair up.
    7 : You cant upgrade the memory card because they ripped you off for a fixed memory.
    8 : No signal at home. Cant use your router for signal boost when you have no network coverage.
    9 : 4s still has the same problems the idiot phone 4 had
    10 : Finally.. The brains behind this heap of junk as now died so the future is Blackberry.

    • Darren,
      My advice to you is to get some therapy. For your information, I have been using a BlackBerry for 5 years and I have been using Dell laptops for the past 6, so you’re completely wrong that I’m the type of person who lives and breathes Apple.

      The iPhone has its problems, and since you live in the UK, maybe Apple phones there have bigger problems. When comparing something like an iPhone with a BlackBerry phone like the bold, you can’t really be serious about comparing battery life. Of course the battery life is going to be lower on an iPhone when you use it far more often. Ever talk to someone with a 4G Android phone about their battery life?

      I can’t speak about what the signal is like in the UK, but I know that the signal here (especially with Verizon) is good.

      I’ve pointed out the problems with the memory card, but I would rather have a phone which I use a lot but has limited memory rather than a crappy phone in which I can upgrade the memory.

      The fact that you say the 4S has the “same problems” as the iPhone 4 either means that you work for Apple (and so you’ve been able to test this product which none of the rest of the world has yet) or your blowing hot air out your arse.

      If you really knew what you were talking about, you would know that the real current value of BlackBerry doesn’t lie in its smartphones. It lies in the BlackBerry name. If you are correct and the future lies with BlackBerry, then the future of smartphones is pretty bleak.

  8. [...] Apollo Voss – The Intuitive InvestorStock BanterAttention All RIMM Traders!One Of My Favorite Plays10 Reasons Why RIM (BlackBerry) Will Go Bankrupt var wpmlAjax = [...]

  9. Wow, this shit got crazy…

    I’m doing a quick research for a class and I have some stuff to say

    First of all, wtf with all the nerdiness and time investment on such irrelevant stuff as market shares and corporate debacles. Enjoy the world.

    Second of all, some of your approaches may be wrong, it’s not that Blackberry changed the software for reading websites, problem is how much has changed website typography. The difference between Apple and RIM? Care for good typography. That’s the root of everything.

    • Keep studying, and when you have real money in the stock market, then come back and comment.
      Do you think that the person trying to decide whether or not to stick with or buy a BlackBerry care about whose responsible for the problems with reading so many different websites? And blaming websites for their typography is irrelevant because I’ve looked at many websites on a BlackBerry versus an iPhone. No one who has actually used both devices can say that the BlackBerry is easier to look at websites.

      I think that it’s great to have competition in the market, and so I personally want to see RIMM get back into shape.
      Competition makes all cell phone companeis (as well as other related companies) improve.

      My final comment for all those people who are writing papers for class, the world of academia does not often have a tight correlation with what happens in the stock market. I’m sure that many business students were writing about how great Enron was just days before the whole company collapsed. Invest real money in the stock market and then you’ll understand what I mean.

      • Ok, I’m a business student as well, and I read some of your posts and feel that you made a lot of good points. HOWEVER, there is nothing wrong with writing about how great Enron was. Enron was GREAT if you were looking in from the outside. The problem is that the awesome performance was generated from fraud accounting methods – WAY out of the context of this discussion.

        Next, let me say that I once used a Blackberry 9000, and then an HTC G2, and now an iPhone 4S.

        With that being said, RIM still makes great phones. RIM’s problem is not so much about the actual product, it is their poor sense of direction and marketing. It seems that RIM is competing against themselves, rather than the market. The consumer taste changed, and RIM didn’t follow.

        Another important thing to mention is consumer perception. Not many people have the time like us to research about a certain phone before purchasing it. iPhone gained a lot of hype and attention, and so it instantly made it appear more appealing to everyone. I am currently employed in the business industry, and I meet with a ton of clients. Many of them were former BB users who have now switched to iPhone. They did not switch because they thought BB sucks and iPhone is better, they switched because they ‘heard’ the iPhone was better, and wanted to try it. Many phones nowadays can accomplish the same thing, just differently – so it is easy to say “Ok, I’m going to try this phone next because I heard it’s better” Also, I want to mention that Steve Jobs and Apple had an amazing marketing campaign. They introduced their new devices in a big conference room like it was one big party. Steve Jobs is a great salesman, he can convince you that one thing is better than the other. All of these sales/marketing aspects are just as important, if not MORE important than the actual product that you are making. You really think iPhone deserves all of this market share and attention? The iPhone 3/3GS were lacking simple features like multi-tasking. and no LED-flash for the camera. Users had to ‘jailbreak’ their iphones just to make it decent. The iPhone 4 had antennae problems. The iPhone 4S has a very OBVIOUS rattle sound coming from the camera lenses, and 512mb of ram is BEHIND the current standard. You know why this hasn’t hurt Apple too much? Because they are currently a ‘hot’ item and in trend. The market is very lenient right now – but wait until the iPhone is well into its maturity stage of the product cycle – they better step it up or else the market will retaliate the same way they are doing to BB right now.

        There are a ton of things to consider when analyzing a certain company – these are just a few that I felt were left out of the debate.

      • Hi Vinh,

        I always appreciate thoughtful comments such as yours. I’m not sure about some of your comments. I don’t think you can say that Enron was a great company. Yes, the accounting fraud directly led to the demise of the company, but it was also the arrogance of Kenneth Lay et al. and the corporate culture they generated that led them and others to take enormous risks. In many ways, their arrogance is not that much different than the co-CEOs of RIM. I understand that it’s always sexy to try a different corporate structure, but co-CEOs is such a bad idea for so many reasons.

        As for RIM, I understand your point. But what I’m trying to communicate is that as a person who actively invests large sums of money in the stock market, understanding trends is important. The BlackBerry line gave RIM a public image. Yes, they own patents. But as I’ve said before, patents are generally not considered as sexy (and therefore as able to attract investors) as more tangible things such as their phones. And when analyzing RIM, and as someone who used a Blackberry until October 2011, I am struck by the deficiencies of the company’s product line.

        I don’t care how well-constructed a phone is made (except for military use). What matters is whether or not a company fulfills consumer expectations. If BlackBerry wants to market itself as a “cell phone” and not as a “smartphone”, then I say that it’s a nice phone. But since RIM is trying to compete with Apple and Android in the smartphone market, then RIM has to get taken to the woodshed. Case in point are the apps. The apps are mostly what makes smartphones so fun to use. Which platform do app developers go after in terms of exposure and profitability? Apple’s iOS. Android is second. And BlackBerry has fallen behind Windows.

        You are correct that Apple has superior marketing. However, don’t get sucked into the common mistake of thinking that their phones are inferior. Remember that when you think about how much you are willing to pay for something, you have to consider its utility. Part of that utility as you mentioned is how many other people in your circle are using it (especially because texting from Apple to Apple phones using iOS5 is now free). Another consideration is the apps that are available.

        One other consideration that doesn’t get the attention it deserves is the advantage of avoiding the fragmentation seen in the Android market. Apple developers all breathed a sigh of relief when they saw that the iPhone 4S was keeping the same size screen as its predecessors. Do I like the way that all Apple apps have the exact same way of putting in the date? No. But I understand that this type of standardization ultimately leads to keeping things streamlined both for app developers as well as for consumers.

        One last consideration are the Apple Stores. As someone who had several problems arise with my BlackBerry phones over the years, there was nothing more frustrating than going to Verizon Wireless and having them fiddle around with it and then tell me that I had to send it back to the company. Translation: I walked in with a phone and then walked out without one. And if you’ve ever gone to any Apple Store, the one thing that always impresses me is how much the people there truly love the products they are selling. I can’t say that about any other electronic company.

        Do iPhones have problems? Yes. But the real question is whether or not the problems are fixable. People knock Apple all the time because the iPhone doesn’t have a removable battery. Trust me, that was the one thing that BlackBerry did have which I thought was great. However, from Apple’s viewpoint, not having a replaceable battery is better for making sure that someone doesn’t stick in an inferior battery, fry the phone, and then cost the company a bunch of money to replace the phone even though it wasn’t really the company’s fault. Should iPhone include a slot for expandable memory? You bet. Should the iPhone 4S have had a 4G modem? Yes, but even that last one is subject to debate. How many of us really need 4G, especially when it’s going to significantly reduce battery life?

        In the end, slick marketing works for one or two years at the most. Apple is not just the result of slick marketing. It also has the products to back it up. Honestly, if Apple comes out with an iPad Mini which is the same size as the Amazon Kindle Fire, are you really going to tell me that people will choose the Kindle Fire over the iPad Mini? What if the price difference were only $20?

        Can BlackBerry rise and regain market dominance? Possibly. Some might point to the way that Apple was on its deathbed in the late 1990s, and then it rebounded. However, I’m less convinced about this. Apple itself never had a problem with making inferior products. Also, it was competing against a balky Windows operating system (I don’t know if you ever used Windows ME, but that had to be the worst operating system imaginable). For BlackBerry to regain dominance in the face of Apple and Android would be beyond imagination.

        Thanks for your comment. As I said, it’s always nice to get a thoughtful comment from someone who actually has experience using the products in question. I feel that most of the vitriolic comments I see against Apple are from people who either have never tried an iPhone or just like to go against the grain for the sake of going against the grain.

  10. I feel like the Author is an Idiot who loves I-Phones… Blackberry is now becoming popular in Asia… Maybe a NO in the US but It’s becoming popular in Asia… I’m not saying what country I am from, but I feel you are missing a lot of things globally… There is an Iceberg in every article over the internet and I do not know where yours is coming from but all but I feel its stupid…

    I’ll go for the function not for the fashion…

    • It is rare that I feel the need to criticize someone who takes the time to write a reply, but there’s always a first. The person who left this comment is the typical type of person who loves to be a contrarian. In other words, he/she just loves to go the opposite way to prove it.

      The fact that the commentor will not say what country he/she is from makes me wonder. Go ahead, why not tell us? It’s possible that Blackberry is becoming popular in oppressive Asian countries such as Myanmar (maybe that’s where you’re from)? The reason is that the country is poor and Blackberry sells cheap phones there. Also, the government cannot monitor Blackberry messages, so it’s a great way for people to communicate without fear of “disappearing” in the middle of the night. Unfortunately, as we have seen in Saudi Arabia, it’s also a great way for terrorists to communicate.

      But to say that Blackberry is becoming popular in Asia is to show all of us that you have no idea about reality. Blackberry is almost nonexistent in South Korea. Its popularity in Thailand is rapidly dwindling as Apple is gaining dominance. China and Japan are reporting that Apple’s presence is increasing. So, what data do you have to support your opinion? Just your opinion? Obviously that doesn’t count for a lot.

      Even amongst the most staunch supporters of Blackberry (i.e. enterprise users), Infoworld.com reported in October 2011 that “30% of Blackberry users in companies with more than 10,000 users plant to move to a different mobile platform in the next year.” This means that for large enterprise corporations, Blackberry would become a minority operating system.

      To say that you’ll go for function and not fashion is one of the most ignorant comments I’ve ever seen. You obviously also missed the fact that I had been a Blackberry user for the past 5 years and just switched in October 2011. I know Blackberry’s product very well, and after using the iPhone 4S for about two months, there’s no way that any remotely intelligent person could argue that you can get more functionality out of a Blackberry than an iPhone.

      • Surely you are being a ‘contrarion’ by writing this essay?

      • No. I wrote this because I truly believe that RIM has royally screwed up the BlackBerry. When a company goes from being the premier brand in a market to pretty much being an afterthought, then that’s a company whose product line is doomed. I know there are a lot of BlackBerry lovers out there, but seriously, if RIM was so strong, then why did the co-CEO’s just step down? It wasn’t because they wanted a vacation.

  11. im doing a speech on the “death” of the blackberry, and i was wondering if u could help me out by giving me some pointers. or do u think that im wrong and the blackberry isnt dead or almost dead.
    Please comment!

  12. well this is a good example of how to get people to read even if you dont know how to write or have any original insight into your subject matter, in other words, just be sensational without backing up anything that you say.

    buddy RIm is not an oil company going around drilling dry wells and pollutting the environment. They arent risking billions of dollars on chance. They have a recurring income that aint going anywhere, anytime. They have patents, they have their OWN NETWORK YOU DUMMY!!! hahaha. that is somehting that no other cell co has. They have unheard of margins. You must be a real and true ass kissing follower if you think people are going to continue to put up with Apples inferior and over priced, overclassed, outdated technologies for much longer (people arent going to tolerate their products breaking after just 6 months, or not working right in the first place) after they paid out the ace for it. People are now realizing that these products actually make life more difficult and more dangerous so the great phone/technology scam is just about over. People arent going to be paying $80+ to talk and text and surf any longer, the jig is up.

    • Okay Billibob,

      Obviously, you’re missing the point. By the way, it’s tough to believe anything you say when you destroy your own credibility by not even being able to write properly, even though you have no problem criticizing my writing. At least I know how to capitalize.

      I’ve run into a lot of people like you who are stuck in their ways and are afraid to embrace change. I feel sorry for you. Maybe you need to get some help. As an investor, I care about only one thing: the price of a company’s stock. That’s it. And guess what? It doesn’t matter how you slice it, this company is heading in the same downward direction as Eastman Kodak (EK). I love when people talk about recurring revenues and patents. Look at what’s happened to EK’s stock price this year? That company’s main value is its portfolio of patents. Yet, EK is not a company I would ever invest a penny in, unless I was shorting the company.

      You are correct that RIM has recurring revenues and is profitable. RIm expects to earn about $5.3 billion for its adjusted third quarter revenue. That’s nice. But look at earnings per share. It’s down about 35%. Is RIM expanding? Yes. But the idea that it’s expanding because it offers a great product at a reasonable price is ridiculous.

      Maybe you are the sort of guy who just uses his BlackBerry for making phone calls and texting your diminishing number of contacts who actually use a BlackBerry. Maybe you think that you’re superior because you can text your BlackBerry-wielding friends for free because RIM has its own network. And if you really did some legwork and asked people around the world why they use BlackBerry, the same reason comes back: because BlackBerry Messenger is a safe way to communicate without most governments (I excluded Saudi Arabia) being able to track texts. This is nice, especially if you’re a terrorist and want to have secret communications with other terrorists. But you’re still going to have to buy a text message plan for all the other people who use non-BlackBerry phones.

      And since you’re obviously out-of-date in your knowledge of Apple, BlackBerry is losing its one main selling point. Anyone in the world who has an Apple phone running iOS5 can now text message for free other iPhone users with phones running iOS5. Basically, Apple has destroyed BlackBerry’s main selling point.

      Are Apple products expensive? Yes. Are they overpriced? It depends. When your BlackBerry has a problem and you have to send it back to the company, just remember that if you had an iPhone, you could have just brought it into your local Apple Store and had it fixed immediately. I don’t know about you, but downtime can be very expensive for people who invest.

      The final thing you don’t understand is that RIM had captured quite a bit of the enterprise market. But look at Fidelity and many other corporations. Watch what happens in the next couple of years as they move away from RIM and start to go with Apple.

      Don’t worry. Readers of this blog have seen stubborn people like you. My guess is also that you have absolutely no money invested with RIM. If you think that the company is so great, then put your money where your mouth is. If you think that recurring revenues and patents and a proprietary network are enough to make RIM awesome, then invest in the company. People like you are incredible drains on society because you are “armchair” and “Monday morning” quarterbacks.

      Seriously, I predicted several months ago that RIM’s stock was going to dive, and was I wrong? If a company is highly profitable on its balance sheet but its stock is tanking, which do you think is more important for the average investor? Wake up son, RIM’s golden years are behind it.

      • Hell yeah! Show them who’s boss. Encrypted messages can only get you so far if the handset you’re using is a complete piece of crap. I was given a brand new torch 2, and not even a month later I traded it for an Iphone. Anyone who says blackberries have the most stable OS is a lying sack of s**t

      • Diego,

        It’s been a good day when I get 2 good comments. By the time I gave up my 1-year-old BlackBerry Bold in October 2011 (the day that the iPhone 4S debuted), I was ready to drop the phone off a bridge. It was bad enough that the phone was freezing on me often, but it was unbearable that some texts and emails were not being delivered to my phone. That was really the last straw.

  13. Wow. I have to say that this was a wonderful consumption of almost 45 minutes of my time sitting in my college cafeteria (slow reader, I know). And I must say that I do feel enlightened after reading arguments, debates, and explanations like this. I love reading blogs like this! I came across this post from this article (http://gizmodo.com/5879632/blackberry-in-2012-a-horrible-year-of-sadness) which I found pretty funny from the writing and disheartening from what it was actually saying.

    Being a hardcore Android user (but open-minded), I wish that Blackberry would invest more in innovation in their products like Apple does. Every year, you know that there are going to be some really cool features for the new iPhone as well as lame or not so useful features. I believe that there is a way to incorporate various features that people love about Blackberry and place them, as well as updated and optimized new features, into a new product.

    This is my personal opinion about Blackberry, but I think that they should take a gutsy move like Microsoft with their new OS for their phone. Sure it was risky as people who were dedicated WM phone users would freak out or love the complete renovation, but Microsoft may not be in the mobile market (so much?) if they had not looked at the other side of the fence and into the future about what needed to be done. Though they do not have a decent mobile market share, I respect their devices from the progress that they have made (though I disagree with some of the hardware requirements/boundaries in place).

    I know I am not a great writer, but I also wanted to say that I think that Blackberry needs to maybe overhaul their design of their hardware. I recently used the new Blackberry 9900, and thought it was really cool with a lot of the improvements (software and physical design), but was disappointed by how behind the curve they were if you will compared to Apple, Android, and even Windows counterparts. A good amount of webpages loaded as if I were using a phone from the stone ages (going back to your text on screen point). Or the “options” or the Blackberry button that gives way to the options menu is not as intuitive as you may think as you may get a short list of options or a super long list (in short, the nesting of options is confusing). I know there are other things that I could say, but I don’t want to delve into those as I think that it would make me sound like a complainer. I want to say though that I do recognize the problems of Android’s phones and Apple’s phones: they do have issues or features that I wish they had that BB users have.

    • Hi Wendel,

      Thanks for the comment. I agree with what you’re saying. As happy as I am to now be using my iPhone 4S, there is a part of me that really wishes that BlackBerry could get its act together and start really competing with Apple and Android.

  14. I have a feeling that you are an expat living in Thailand…

    I own a BB Torch and am thinking about getting rid of it. But not for an iPhone though. I just hate phone without buttons. I like to be able to push a button for speed dial and not having to trigger speech recognition. I’m not a Mac fan but do own 3 Apple computers and an iPad (sold my iPod long time ago) for good reasons. Not that I’m completely in love with them though. I think their products are overpriced and I simply don’t like to support any company that tends to dominate the market. :)

    I have always been a Nokia fan but their phones have been disappointing for the last couple years. Maybe it’s time to go back to Nokia again. Have looked at Android but still can’t find anything I like. I like the BB Torch because it has both touch screen (with good feel to it I must say) and plenty of buttons.

    • Hi Ken,

      I’m an American but I live in America. However, I do have many Thai friends.
      I was like you. I kept telling myself that I wouldn’t change from BB because I also loved physical buttons. But now that I’ve changed to an iPhone, I realized that the touchscreen is not so bad. It also depends on the size of one’s thumbs and how precise one’s proprioception is. For people who don’t have good hand-eye coordination, a touchscreen keypad is frustrating beyond belief.

      Several months ago, I wrote a piece about the potential upside of Nokia. They have great distribution, great designers, but the slow move to Windows Mobile hurt them. However, now that Windows Mobile 8 is on their phones and the Nokia 800 is getting strong reviews, the company could have a little longer to be in the weeds, but a few months later we could see Nokia reverse course. I hope that happens because even though I have an iPhone, competition will only make all smartphones better in the future. Unfortunately the Nokia 800 is also a touchscreen.

      Thanks for reading.

  15. In BlackBerry, you have more choices in phone designs than iPhones which only has ONE. If you can’t manage a touchscreen, then you won’t be buying an iPhone.

    • Hi Toytos,
      I understand what you’re saying. But having more choices doesn’t always equate to having better choices. If someone wants to get a BlackBerry as just a phone, then why not get a cheaper phone and save the money by not getting a data plan? But since all BlackBerry phones come with data plans and are touted as “smartphones”, they will be compared with Apple and Android phones. And the truth is that they just can’t hold up to the scrutiny. Look at how many major corporations have dropped BlackBerry just in the past 2 weeks.

  16. the author of this article is a fucking moron hillbilly who probably only uses his iphone to watch gay porn and jerk off his microscopic dick. . .. which is why the blackberry smartphone is not for him. he should have highlighted the stronger vibrations from the iphone from when he inserts it in his ass.

    Regards,

    Thorsten Heins

    President and CEO
    Research In Motion

    • Ah, if only it really were you Thorsten.

      Your company deserves a major slap for screwing up a great brand. In many ways, RIM has become the modern day equivalent of those old VHS tapes: still usable but out-of-touch with modern-day consumers. Since I wrote this post, what has happened to RIM’s stock? What has happened to its co-CEO’s and co-founders? What about losing that Halliburton and other major enterprise contracts, all in the span of a couple of weeks?

      And you can bamboozle all those idiots out there who just look at the recurring payables and love to trumpet how your company is still profitable. But honestly, that doesn’t matter to the average person. For the average person who has money sunk in your stock, how are you going to make them happy? Apple overcame long odds to become a dominant force in today’s tech world. It almost went bankrupt along the way. Maybe RIM will rise like the Phoenix, but for some reason, I’m not holding my breath.

      Btw, if you’re going to take on Thorsten’s name, at least have the creativity to figure out a better email name than “thisguysafag@hotmail.com”. Of course, considering how unimaginative RIM has become, maybe this is proof that you really are Thorsten.

  17. As much I hate to say, you are right, Blackberry has lost their hold in the smartphone market and are going to continue losing it. I used to have a Curve and like you, I loved it. I switched to the Bold after 3 years of loyal service from my Curve and it did take me a while to adjust to the sensor pad and such. I can only hope that BB can come back. Although I do not have a MBA I think that instead of investing on the tablet they should have used that money to better improve their phones and on their app market to provide the apps that people are looking for in their iPhones or Androids. I will continue to purchase BB phones until they’re gone. Hopefully not too soon, but the way things are looking, it could very well be sooner than I hope. I thoroughly enjoyed your article and will continue to follow up on your site to see if you have any more news or thoughts about RIM and their phones as the months go by and their reports are released.

    • Hi Pedro,
      Thanks for the nice comments. I agree that the BlackBerry Curve was probably one of the greatest phones I ever owned. I don’t think that RIM coming out with a tablet was a problem. The real problem was that RIM came out with a tablet that didn’t have its celebrated core competencies (messaging and integrated email) working properly. BB might turn a corner. I hope so because as I’ve said to other people, competition makes everyone better.

  18. I happen to agree, but only partly. I was like you, in that. I love a physical keyboard and although i still believe bb’s still have the best smartphones with keys out there, one of the reasons i loved my curve. But i think blackberry is far from over, or bankrupt for that matter. Maybe this isnt such a problem in america (i live in northern ireland; no one make sterotypical jokes about the irsh being whiskey drinking lepraucons, and i wont strangle them and claim wrongly that all american citizens are obese), but in NI, i have seen my friends iphone 4s and cousins bb bold 9900, manage to get 5 bars recpetion, whilst the iphone got 3, same location, and this happened again whilst hiking. And i still strongly believe that if the app world became an open source like android, it would be brilliant, why would companies not make their apps for as many platforms as possible when it requires only minimal coding changing, in some cases that is, in other words the app world still has some, but not huge potential. That and of course, when you are comparing the iphone and android phones remember that they are not normally anywhere near as expensive. Blackberrys are far from over, if they were, where would anyone be able to get a good keyboard smartphone? For a good price? And with a lot of practice be able to type far quicker than any touch screen, (very bias), so i strongly believe that bb will maintain a cult of addicted followers like me…

    However, unfortunately your right. Its not apple or overpriced, so they arnt popular, RIM never listens to anyones complaints, including mine, so customer loyalty goes down the drain, the app world still looks like toilet paper compared to solid gold, if you compare it to android and The app market.

    But i think Blackberry has massive potential, no matter what anyones says, if they listen to their customers, improve app world etc, they could take over again no problem.

    • Hi Mike,

      I’m heading to Ireland for the first time this summer. Can’t wait.
      Thanks for your comment. RIM has two things going for it: a secure system and money in the bank.
      Playbook 2.0 might solve some of their tablet problems. But the only places that they are going to have any major market presence are Asian countries with low wages such as Cambodia and Thailand. For those countries, buying an iPhone is just so far beyond the justifiable reach of most people that cheaper BB phones work.

      There’s no doubt that they have to go with Android Apps, because almost no one is making a native BB app. And it’s clear that the company is basically holding up the white flag on this as it now allows Android apps to be downloaded onto BB Playbooks. And I completely agree that their app store layout is horrible. It’s kind of like watching your friends (those using iPhones or Android phones) flying to Italy while you have to take a boat: it sucks.

      Since you had a BB Curve, you know how great that phone was. And one of the absolute best parts of that phone was the keyboard. BB should admit that the current keyboard with its slanted surfaces and lack of space between keys is stupid. I ended up making far more mistakes with the new keyboard and it was driving me crazy.

      Here’s a question for the BB Playbook (and eventually all BB phones): when someone purchases an Android app on an Android device like something made by Samsung, and then decides to switch to a BB device, does the app port over without any additional charges? Or do they have to buy the app again?

  19. Thanks, thats really given me a lot to think about: i was thinking about buying the bb bold 9900, i have heard several opposing opinions, but after reading your review, im starting reconsider being a BB die hard, theres no point in ‘going down with the ship’ in a manner of speaking, but i dont really know where I would go; the iphone is a bit out of my price range to be honest, i have always been more of a computer person, cant wait until windows 8, and love intel sandybridge i7 (hence keyboards, on BB), and android has never really appealed to me at all, and yet i need a smartphone… Indeed that was an interesting question you posed at the end, anout the apps on different devices of blackberry and android tablets etc, will they have to be bought multiple times? Interesting question, have to see how that one turns out, because as you said its obvious bb have no choice but to submit and join android, though i believe it will have a more personal blackberry layout etc, making it stand out from the ordinary android smartphones.
    Pls. Have a good time on your holiday here, im sure it will be nice, bring an umbrella though, its literally always raining in the north, bit more sunny down south, closer to france, especially in summer, and i suppose if you are in dublin Grafton street is best by far for shopping, etc. Lucky you :) .

    • Hi Mike,
      As a former BB-lover, I know the difficulty of breaking away. One thing that made it easier is that while I had my BB Bold, I also had an iPod Touch. Using both of them side-by-side, I realized that if my house was on fire and I could only grab one of them, I would grab the iPod Touch. That kind of showed me why staying with BB was bad. The BB ship is sinking and RIM might be able to get things fixed, but the problem is that Apple’s lead is growing, and the only way that BB can compete is to line up with Android Apps for now until BB can convince enough developers to start making native apps for it. Right now there is absolutely no incentive for a developer to make a native BB app. Does the Apple touch typing take some time to get used to? Definitely, but it’s not as bad as I thought it was going to be. Although I do find myself reminiscing about my BB Curve.

      I’m excited as heck about visiting Ireland. I’m going with my friend and his wife and kids. He’s from County Mayo. Hopefully, I can have a chance to see the basking sharks there. They are magnificent creatures.

  20. Hey Kelvin! I heard Warren B. is trying to contact you for some hot picks :)
    I love the fact RIM replaced the 2 founders and put someone to “manage” the crisis… LOL
    But what I really don’t understand is how they released the playbook WITHOUT EMAIL SUPPORT!!! I mean, it is just a joke… the MOST BASIC THING YOU NEED!!!
    It’s is rumored they have 5M PB in stock… now trying to sell them at $199… good luck RIM.

    • Hi Mariano,
      Thanks for the comment. The thing that is really troubling is the ridiculous comments that Thorsten Heins made when he announced Playbook 2.0. You know that a company is in trouble when its big news event is not the release of a new operating system but the release of a new operating system for a device that they had trouble giving away for free to developers. Ouch! Heins was asked directly if he thought that RIM had screwed up when they released Playbook several months ago. No joke, Heins said that it wasn’t a mistake but rather that RIM was responding to what it’s customers wanted at the time. Huh? Customers wanted a tablet that didn’t have the key features which made BB famous? Heins just proves that either he is playing things extremely close to the vest a la Steve Jobs or he is just doing business as usual like his predecessors. Either way, it’s a huge mistake. BB supporters need the company to be open and honest about its mistakes and its direction. Without this, there’s no reason to stay.

  21. Would you buy a small spec position in RIMM at 13?

    • Hi Douglas, looking at RIMM’s chart, I understand why you’re asking this question. The simple answer is no. Although I might consider it at 12.00. Right now it’s fair to say that investor confidence in RIMM is close to non-existent. Right now as major corporations are reporting solid earnings, RIMM currently has an earnings growth this year of -35.59%. Ouch. The big question is when will they stop the hemorrhaging? The release of Playbook 2.0 combined with the CEO’s ridiculously disingenuous comments does nothing to inspire confidence yet. And we continue to hear the same junk. For example Rob Orr, RIM’s VP of product management said that 50% of all users of its Playbooks jumped to Playbook OS 2.0 on the day it came out, and that this shows how great the system’s email is. Wrong. It shows how bad the original Playbook’s OS was. If you’re going to try and make any money, I would take a position in OVTI. The stock shot up today and has significant upside if OVTI is the manufacturer of the iPad 3 (aka the New iPad).

  22. Sorrey but the main reason RIM will fail is that is not ANDROID. Take a look at the market shares dude, being a fanboy causes blindness.

    • Hi Agares,
      In the end, only one thing matters to all these companies: money. When people compare Apple and Android, it’s kind of like comparing Ferrari with the rest of the automakers of the world. Do you get my point? Of course Android’s market share is going to be greater. The reason is simple: there are a dozen companies making Android-based phones. There is only one company making a phone that runs on Apple’s iOS. Here’s the problem: we know that the real driver of everything are the apps. And the problem that Android faces is that when you look at where the money is, it’s not making Android apps and it’s also in companies making Android-based apps for selling their stuff. When 90% of all mobile purchases are made on phones running Apple’s iOS, you know that this is where marketers will gravitate.

      As for consumers, there are a lot of people who want an iPhone but can’t afford it. The answer is get a cheaper Android phone. It’s not the same, but it’s close. With the current economic situations in Europe, I don’t expect Apple to gain huge market shares there because why would you buy a $400 iPhone when you don’t even know if you can afford to pay your phone bill?

      As for me, I’m hoping that Android does well. It’s a funny thing how anyone who doesn’t have an Apple product immediately labels anyone who says anything complimentary about Apple as a “fanboy”. Just an fyi, I do all my computing with my Dell computers. The main thing is that I evaluate companies without any emotional attachments. I took a lot of heat for writing this post several months ago, but the fact is that what I predicted is well on its way to becoming reality, especially because I expect Nokia and Windows 8 Mobile to start making a big push to gain market share. And that’s a good thing. I definitely don’t want Apple to be the only game in town. Thanks for reading the post.

  23. Have you changed your mind at all, in the light of recent events?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Tag Cloud

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

%d bloggers like this: