The replacement of founder and CEO of RIM, Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie respectively, acknowledged what the market and analysts had known for months, BB application development companies and Blackberry app developers are reeling; IBN Live reports 89 per cent fall in RIM stock price as compared to 2008.The management shakes obviously confounds more than its reassures. Although the new CEO Heins reassured and explained his goals for the company, market can see a clear drop of more 7 percent shares for RIM.
What Happened and When?
Although RIM loss began much after Apple became famous, it sales dropped further with the arrival of Google’s open source technology, Android. In the last three months since November 2011, Blackberry has seen a tough time mainly due to technical problems, outages and not so fluid performance.
While some say it is bad management, others accuse Apple’s success. The fact remains that RIM is losing out on competition. Both the management and competitive market condition had an impact on RIM’s failure. RIM failed to reach the consumer needs which included better technology at lower costs. Although it tried to launch new software with better capability, they were never better than the offerings of Apple and Android. Also in terms of Blackberry Application development, RIM ecosystem was the problem; moreover, RIM gave no room to open applications. RIM emphasized on security and push mails, but these features were also well-delivered by other phones.
When we look at the management troubles, we need to consider the flopped RIM tablet; RIM Playbook, delayed smart phones and weak sales, which forced the company to layoff.
As a rescue measure, RIM wants to launch Blackberry Software 10. This operating system will sell with all new set of advanced devices in the Blackberry’s launch list. Actually, RIM has a long road map to overtake the competitors. This road map is divided into the launch of two types of products: Smart phones and Tablets.
The information about RIM’s new smart phone is sparse, but the leaked information conveys that RIM is investing time in launching only one flagship device with Blackberry 10 platform. Analysts suggest that this is a right move. RIM only needs one flagship device to come back to the market. We expect the device to be an Apple and Android back-breaker. However, we are not to use it any time soon until September this year. We can catch a glimpse of the new operating system in Mobile World Congress in February. Apparently, the device will carry next generation features such as NFC and BBM capabilities. This may impress its 75 million subscriber chain. This would also build a new opportunity in the arena of Blackberry apps development.
In terms of tablet computers, two of the new blackberry tablets are about to catch up with 3G+ and long term evolution 4G capabilities. The first device is about to hit the market in April this year. It has a seven-inch display.
I think RIM should drop both its tablets and focus on an existing one, upgrading it and adding LTE 4G support and WiMax support to it. RIM has a lot of hard work to do this year. Its strategy still shows the positivity and workable schedule in place.