RIM CEO Thorsten Heins has wisely decided to ditch his “there’s nothing wrong with the company as it exists right now” talking point. During his remarks at RIM’s 2012 Annual General Meeting today, Heins said that while he was optimistic that his company could make a comeback, he was “not satisfied” with the state of the company and acknowledged that the “next several quarters will be very challenging.” Heins also identified three key reasons for RIM’s decline in the United States: The consumer appeal of iOS and Android, the rise of bring-your-own-device policies in corporate IT departments and RIM’s own lack of an LTE-capable smartphone. He said that the release of the BlackBerry 10 operating system in early 2013 would put the company back on competitive footing in all three of these areas. More →
RIM CEO Thorsten Heins’s assertion that “there’s nothing wrong with the company as it exists now” could have more dire consequences than the usual howls of laughter from the tech press. The New York Times has spoken with “several securities law experts and some investors” who say that Heins’s overly rosy statements, combined with delays for major product releases such as BlackBerry 10, could allow investors to credibly sue him for misrepresenting the current state of the company. More →
Research In Motion has its work cut out for it. Apple and Samsung went from dominating the smartphone industry to completely owning it in the first quarter this year, and RIM’s struggles continued as its BlackBerry 7 smartphone lineup really started showing its age. All eyes are on BlackBerry 10 as industry watchers try to determine whether or not RIM has a real shot at a comeback, and RIM has to be especially impressive at this year’s BlackBerry World conference since its first BlackBerry 10 smartphone likely won’t even launch until some time in October. RIM president and CEO Thorsten Heins will take the stage in just a few minutes when RIM’s BlackBerry World keynote kicks off at 9:00 a.m. EDT / 6:00 a.m. PDT, so hit the break to follow all the action as it unfolds and don’t forget to refresh the page for the latest updates. More →
Research In Motion’s annual BlackBerry World conference kicks off Tuesday morning and new president and chief executive officer Thorsten Heins will take the stage to greet the thousands of show goers in attendance. Heins’s company has a daunting mountain to climb as its struggles continue, and this year’s show may be RIM’s most important to date as it looks to attract enough interest from developers and users to tide it over until its next-generation smartphone platform launches. RIM’s first BlackBerry 10-powered smartphone likely won’t be released until some time in October, but developers will get their first taste of a smartphone running PlayBook OS, the basis for BlackBerry 10, when RIM hands out thousands of prototype smartphones at the BlackBerry Jam conference that will run alongside BlackBerry World in Orlando, Florida. Will RIM make enough of a splash to instill faith in developers, users and investors that it can successfully re-enter a market not just dominated by, but completely owned by Apple and Samsung?
Bookmark this link, which will go live shortly before the event begins this morning, and make sure to head there for our live coverage of RIM’s keynote! Coverage will begin just before 9:00 a.m. EDT / 6:00 a.m. PDT.
Research In Motion executivess took the stage during BlackBerry DevCon Europe on Tuesday to clear up a few facts about the company’s success with its BlackBerry App World marketplace. RIM’s new CEO Thorsten Heins said BlackBerry App World is now home to more than 60,000 applications, which is a fraction of what’s available in the Android Market or iTunes App Store, and that BlackBerry devices are among the most popular smartphones purchased in the United Kingdom. RIM’s vice president of developer relations Alec Saunders also said that there are 174 million app downloads per month, or about 6 million applications downloaded per day, The Verge reported. Saunders argued that RIM’s BlackBerry App World has 43% more daily downloads per app than Apple’s own iTunes App Store and he said App World can be more profitable as well — BlackBerry apps supposedly earn about 40% more than their Android counterparts, and 13% of BlackBerry developers have made more than $100,000 from their apps. In addition to the app figures, Saunders and Nokia’s head of Qt announced that RIM’s BlackBerry PlayBook OS now supports the Qt developer framework, originally intended for Nokia devices. More →
Former Research In Motion co-CEO and co-Chairman Mike Lazaridis said in a recent interview that he had been planning to step down from his role at the helm of the company for several years. While speaking with The Record, Lazaridis confessed that he had been planning to relinquish his co-CEO role for several years leading up to January 22nd when RIM announced that Lazaridis and co-CEO Jim Balsillie were stepping down. Lazaridis said in the interview that he had been grooming new CEO Thorsten Heins for the CEO position since he was first hired in 2007, but the former chief did not explain why he waited so long to step down while RIM’s stock plummeted and investors clamored for new leadership. Though Lazaridis is no longer RIM’s top executive, he will continue to play an active role on the company’s board. He also said he plans to purchase an additional $50 million in RIM stock. “This company has a strong balance sheet of $1.5 billion,” Lazaridis said. “It has strong sales of over $5 billion a quarter. This is a strong organization with a strong global brand, an iconic product and a strong future.” More →
Investors had been clamoring for Research In Motion co-founders Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis to relinquish their co-CEO and co-chairman roles, and the company finally announced this past Sunday that Balsillie and Lazaridis were out, replaced by new chairperson of the board Barbara Stymiest and new chief executive officer Thorsten Heins. RIM’s stock plunged more than 13% when Heins introduced himself as the company’s new CEO, due in large part to a video interview during which he essentially told the same story RIM’s former chiefs have been telling for more than a year. The new CEO has since backed away from the company’s old it’s OK, we’re OK message while speaking to the press and analysts, however, and it is no coincidence that RIM’s stock has recovered a bit as Heins assures investors that change is brewing. Read on for more. More →
Research In Motion hasn’t just had a difficult time innovating since the iPhone was first introduced, the company has had trouble innovating ever since its product started to morph into something more than a simple email messaging device. RIM has always been behind the curve with regard to technology in some ways. It was still making devices with black and white displays when other manufacturers were launching devices with vibrant full-color screens. RIM was one of the last manufacturers to launch an EDGE device and it was also one of the last manufacturers to include a camera in its devices. The vendor consistently offered devices without GPS or Wi-Fi, and without a functional web browser. The problem with Research In Motion is not just that the company has failed to adapt or plan for the future, it’s that RIM hasn’t been able to accurately predict not only what the mobile landscape was going to look like down the road, but also what its customers want in a BlackBerry handset. Unfortunately, judging from what I’ve seen so far, I don’t see much changing with new CEO Thorsten Heins. More →
After months of investors unrest, Research In Motion on Sunday announced that Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis were stepping down from their roles as co-CEO and co-Chairmen. Barbara Stymiest was named RIM’s new chairperson of the board, in line with rumors, and former Ericsson executive Thorsten Heins was named president and CEO. Heins and Stymiest hosted a conference call Monday morning, with Heins leading the show, and the company took its first steps in a long climb toward regaining shareholder confidence and customer confidence. Read on for more. More →