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Old 06-03-2005, 01:45 PM   #7 (permalink)
Mark Rejhon
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We should give RIM credit here. They did release the 7100 series, which are far sexier models of BlackBerries than previous models. They need to keep this up, releasing innovating new models, while at the same time improving the traditional models. Scaling up the rollout of new BlackBerry models is very likely daunting to RIM because they have a high standard of operating system stability, and keeping the operating system updated on dozens of models of BlackBerries is going to be a nightmare. Fortunately, OS Version 4.0 is the end of the line for most of the older models, and RIM can finally now concentrate more on newer models.

At a certain point where there are so many models, a consumer division spinoff just might make this easier, as they can have more strict operating system standards for the business BlackBerry division versus the theoretical consumer "BerryMedia" division (if RIM spins off a consumer-specific division, to permit more innovation such as cameras and memory card slots).

RIM has a history of being slow and conservative. This has helped them immensely in many industries, paying off with generally very stable devices that are more bulletproof than other smartphones and PDA's. But at 5 or 10 million subscribers in the future, challenges are going to be rather intense and there is the danger of massively slowing down as a company from the excessive inertia way too early. RIM still has a chance to quickly rocket past 10 million subscribers without yet hitting market saturation, if RIM plays their cards well as the Next Nokia.

A problem I observed was in a recent Popular Science article about smartphones. BlackBerry was not even included in this article, except in a sidebar. This relates to RIM's marketing difficulties in this particular arena and is not really Popular Science's fault. However, See My Letter to Popular Science Magazine which did chide them a little on this issue. This clearly shows one example of a marketing issue by RIM if BlackBerry is not being included in the same articles as TREO phones and iPaq phones.
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Last edited by Mark Rejhon : 06-03-2005 at 02:08 PM.
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