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Executive behind RIM’s BlackBerry 10 UI jumps ship [updated]

Hampus Jakobsson, user interface guru and founder of The Astonishing Tribe, announced on Tuesday that he has left Research In Motion (RIMM) to pursue other projects. RIM acquired TAT in late 2010 and BlackBerry fans grew giddy at the possibility of modern UI designs hitting their beloved smartphones. Nothing of note ever came to BlackBerry 7, but from what we’ve seen of BlackBerry 10 thus far, TAT’s influence is clearly present. Jakobsson apparently had no interest in seeing his hard work hit the market, though, as the executive has confirmed on Twitter that he left RIM.

Updated with RIM’s statement after last paragraph.

“I’m handing over this to others in RIM now, but if you want to follow me as a ex-TAT-founder I’m at: @hajak” Jakobsson wrote on Twitter. The TAT founder didn’t say exactly what he plans to do now that he has left RIM. When asked why he decided to leave, he replied, “cause I’m a startup-guy and even if I really liked the company and the people, I felt it was time to start another one.”

UPDATE: A RIM spokesperson provided the following comment to BGR via email:

RIM can confirm that Hampus Jakobsson has left his role as Director, Strategic Alliances at RIM. We wish him the best. The BlackBerry 10 UI team, which includes many members of The Astonishing Tribe, as well as others around the world, remains on track to deliver BlackBerry 10 in the first quarter of 2013.

[Via N4BB]


Zach Epstein

Zach Epstein has worked in and around ICT for more than 15 years, first in marketing and business development with two private telcos, then as a writer and editor covering business news, consumer electronics and telecommunications. Zach’s work has been quoted by countless top news publications in the US and around the world. He was also recently named one of the world's top-10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes, as well as one of Inc. Magazine's top-30 Internet of Things experts.

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