The Death Of RIM

Bob Lefsetz is a music industry observer, and publisher of the Lefsetz letter:


If one function devices could continue to triumph, the iPod would not be supplanted by the iPhone.

A friend just asked me if I was on BBM.  That’s BlackBerry Messenger for the uninitiated.  And many may never be initiated, because BlackBerry is so 2001.  Or 5.  Or maybe even 6 or 7, but certainly not 11.

BlackBerries do one thing incredibly well, process e-mail.

And that’s it.

If you think BlackBerries surf the Web well, then you don’t, or have never used an iPhone.

Sure, RIM sells a touch screen BlackBerry, but that’s like the Beach Boys doing disco music, or Elton John rapping.  The Beach Boys actually tried that.  Didn’t work too well.  If you’re a musical act, you can’t follow trends, you’ve got to be you.  But in both tech and music, you only survive if you’re ahead of the curve, and not if you’re behind.

It’s all about software.  And software can have no glitches.  The reason Apple is triumphing is because their gear just works.  Sure, it looks cool. But that’s just icing on the cake.  People didn’t buy all those Toyotas because they looked cool, but because they didn’t break.

It’s utterly fascinating watching the tech landscape.  It’s truly either innovate or die.  Once upon a time, I’d pay extra and buy Sony with almost no research.  Now Samsung makes a better television and Microsoft makes a better motion detection gaming system.  I can’t even remember the name of Sony’s wii-style competitor, but everybody’s testifying about Kinect.

You’ve got to read David Pogue’s 10th anniversary tech column in the “New York Times”:

He talks about the littered landscape of deceased items but also states that he too is overwhelmed, with the sheer plethora of tech products.

Just like we’re overwhelmed with the sheer quantity of music.

But make a great tune and it lasts forever.

A mediocre, trend-following track may be a hit today, but it’s as useless in the future as a Motorola StarTac.

I know, I know, you’re Canadian, you beat your chest for RIM.

But it’s over.

Because RIM looked for a day it could dominate, but once it reached that peak…nothing.

Google’s making inroads in the mobile world because of Android software.  Doesn’t matter the handset, they all work well enough.

Sure, iPhones work better, but Apple is proving you don’t have to dominate to be profitable.  Look at their Mac sales.  And whatever dominance they had in MP3 players is about to become irrelevant, as a result of not only smartphones, but on demand streaming.  Isn’t it interesting that the best-selling iPod is the Touch, which is basically the iPhone without the phone (but it does have FaceTime!)

It’s confusing.  Just when you get up to speed in one area, time passes and you’re passe.  You can stay where you are, in the backwater, but please don’t try and tell everybody else to live in your ancient village.  This has decimated the major labels and is now impacting newspapers and movies and…  It’s tough to be dominant in the old world but start over in the new.  But that’s what you’ve got to do.  The only way to triumph these days is by being cutting edge.  There’s no way you can corral people into living in the past.

I’ve probably bought my last BlackBerry.  I’ve got app-envy.  There are whole issues of “Macworld” and “MacLife” that don’t apply to me.  Media is fascinated with apps, and I’m left out.  I’m not a shopper, but all I read about are apps that help you navigate Black Friday sales.

RIM is a one hit wonder.  That is now chasing trends, poorly.

This doesn’t work in music and it doesn’t work in tech.

Feedback and comments after the jump

RIM Employee:

I guess you probably expected to hear from me…

Obviously I disagree with most of what you’re saying below and think that perhaps “The Death of RIM” seems like a bit of a sensational tabloid heading than something actually/accurately researched, but I think I’ll avoid getting too worked up over your opinion/hyperbole.

I would like to know what apps you envy though?  Have you checked out BlackBerry App World at all on your BlackBerry or online (  There are loads of great apps and our new Torch has a better full html5 browser than anything out there – including the much lauded Chrome on a PC!  Anyway check out App World and let me know what you’re looking for – try out Nobex Radio Companion, Slacker, Pandora, Thumbplay, BitBop, Shazam, PushLife, 7Digital and Poynt to name a few.  We have tons of great games, shopping apps, awesome nav tools (see BlackBerry Traffic and DriveSafely), eBook readers (see Wattpad or Kobo), translators (Navita) and yes, even fart apps.
Here’s some fun stuff for you to check out:

(by the way, I’m not saying these songs are necessarily any good, it’s more to underscore that their is a strong cultural attachment to BlackBerry and BBM.  As far as I know we had no involvement in any of these tracks.  Definitely not the Swaggberry one because Universal Music sent it to me earlier this week as it is apparently blowing up in the clubs and we were unaware. Anyway, I do think there is likely going to be an Apple backlash as people start to get sick of being told to love and worship Apple, but that’s just my opinion).

name withheld



I hear you, and agree!

Don’t write my name, I work there ;)


This is absolutely right on. Possibly in more ways than you know.

Speaking as somebody who deals with RIM and is a player in the mobile ecosystem – they have had chance after chance. And have screwed the pooch each time. Rather than maintaining / increasing their prosumer market share and making inroads in the consumer market – by not stepping up and spending marketing and licensing $ – they are losing prosumer market share and not making inroads in the consumer market. It will be a business school case study someday. Soon.

name withheld


Selling for Sprint as my main gig, the biggest perspectove I’ve seen on the nail in the coffin for RIM is the cheapening of Android phones. iPhones def are not expensiev either, but RIM makes their sales on BOGO BBerrys. Well, this hoiday I was selling 2 free Android phones, and it kills Blackbery sales.



Foolishly I took my brokers advice and bought RIM in Canada at 72.00.  Wanted to buy Apple but he said “it’s just a fad”.

Within two weeks the stock was down to 49.00.

You are so right about that company…licking my wounds but if one takes a long view on the market…guess I need a new broker…

name withheld


1.  i see more people with blackberry’s than iphones
2.  motion detection in games is a 2006 fad, microsoft and sony checked in too late.  nintendo will always be on top in videogames
3.  tech can be tangible, most music these days doesn’t touch me at all.

Mark Phipps


Fernando Perdomo:

There is one place where the blackberry has a place… Boost Mobile does a 60 dollar a month all you can talk, surf, and sext plan (froidian slip)  that is unbeatable with a blackberry curb.. This is Smartphone awesomeness at a musicians budget.. I can run my label through the email, post pics from gigs on facebook, update my status, forward mp3 emails, and play people my youtube video and mp3s using this little bugger.. and all I pay is 60 bucks a month… beat that


Bob… Thank you so much for writing this..  I’ve been miserable trying to view youtube videos on my BB, while my friends pop up their iPhones loading videos within seconds…

Switching to an iPhone once my contract is finished…. Annnd I’m canadian… I should stick with Rim… But they have to step up their game if they want my money…


Elgin Tagle


Sorry u are out to lunch on this one

Sent wirelessly from my BlackBerry device on the Bell network.
Envoyé sans fil par mon terminal mobile BlackBerry sur le réseau de Bell.

Chris Chapin


Very timely! Had a BB since the start. Writing this email on it. In the line to buy an iPhone4 as I write.

Dean Dorrell

P.S. Except. Except! I can’t buy it! Apple Store in Westfield Sydney Australia will only sign customers up in the morning! And it’s 14.20 Sat afternoon. Now that’s not what you expect from Mr Jobs is it? Been to two other shops and in the last possible place now. If it’s not today, maybe it’s not meant to be!


Sssoooo….The Playbook, which you don’t mention, isn’t a strong effort to diversify?

There are many in the developer community who are very excited about this device: no wall around the future app store, a solid OS (QNX, an industrial grade system derived from UNIX.), and a suite of development tools available right out of the gate, supporting environments (particularly Adobe’s) that interactive devs are already expert in.

Maybe I’m just a chest-beating Canuck, but RIM shouldn’t counted out right on the edge of their debut in a new, but related field.

Sent from my HTC, because I’m cool.



In support of your theory – have you seen kik? It’s bbm for
non-blackberries. Skyrocketing downloads and addicted users – but RIM just launched an injunction for various shady reasons adding up to: we’re terrified of what this will do to our business.

In opposition to your theory – I think you’re right about the consumer use of BB’s tanking, but you didn’t mention enterprise users who are locked into BB for work email because their IT pros don’t trust apple’s security and other enterprise-level features. I’m stuck on a t-mobile blackberry because being a two-device gal seems too complicated (ie I don’t even see my phone bill as my company is on a corporate t-mobile plan + I’ve heard too many horror stories about at&t service. So I have an iPod touch too.) It would maybe be smart of Apple to start marketing specifically to the all-powerful IT heads who make those decisions for hundreds, if not thousands of people. It’s just a different set of “influencers” and either RIM and Microsoft do a much better job in terms of educating them about their offerings.

Natalie Lent


could never live without BBM. Kik is an awesome cross platform BBM equivalent that works on iPhone Android and Blackberry. Unfortunately RIM decided this week to block it. They’re gripping on to the last bit of leverage they have in a very closed way. You’d think you were reading about Apple here, not RIM.

Michael Schneider


Whatsapp lets me message between blackberry and iphone and iphone and iphone without txt charges. once i had that the transition to iphone was done. also facetime is rapidy turning into fucktime.

Todd Lewis


A UK perspective: Blackberry is the only device teens and young adults use – because BBM is free. It’s replaced SMS texting and since the device plays music and connects up to Facebook and YouTube it serves all functions. Like 8-tracks and cassettes and mp3, no-one cares that it’s inferior to iPhone. If you have an iPhone you’re out of the social loop with your friends – because they all using BBM to connect.

Want to know how they discover and share music? When someone hears about something interesting, he looks it up on YouTube. If he likes it he pastes it on Facebook. Then he BBMs the crew with a link to the Facebook post.

John Ingham


you oughta check out a droid x. Only prob I have with apple is their proprietary programming….my new droid is the envy of my iphone friends…i dont hate apple … But Droid rocks!

Fat Pete


not me, nor any of my circle…
The last holdout was given…. GIVEN an iPhone for his birthday last December.
He discovered magiuc in his hand and nbever looked back…

RIM has always sucked… from Balsillie’s attitude right down to his products…
I keep waiting to see a Crackberry on sale, paired with a bottle of Aqua Velva as an incentive to buy…

Canadians only beat their chests for two things, well maybe three.
Hockey, heartburn and RUSH…

mark fancher


I just got an iPhone after 4 Blackberries in 8 years.  Last one was the Storm.  Never hated it as much as everyone told me I should.  I was a big RIM believer. And yes, I am Canadian, but my resistance was not based on patriotism, but on fears of looking like a teenage girl with a toy instead of a grown up.

But I couldn’t hold out waiting for RIM any longer.  They are years behind. They wait for Apple to do something amazing, then make a lousy copy of it.

I was so tired of hearing about the app store.  Big deal I thought.  Then I got an iPhone and iPad and I get it.  Hardware against hardware, they can all debate till they are blue in the face, they all have something they are better at.  Who really cares about pixels at this point? Hardware debates are completely besides the point.  The one trump card, the one that fixes everything, the one that customizes, that advances, that entertains, that really helps, is the app store.  Don’t like the way the camera operates on the iPhone? Download one of a dozen apps that replaces the default camera. Don’t like the alarm clock? Get one of 100 alarm apps.  And on and on and on.  Nearly every gap has been identified long before I got to the game and is fixed by a developer and an app. Then, there’s the advances.

You can’t beat that.  You can have the brightest team in the world and enormous marketshare, but you can’t beat an army of unleashed geeks and profiteers.

I went head to head this weekend with my cousin with the Torch.  We tested websites, the app stores, everything we could.  Even he, he who works at RIM no less, had to bow his head.

This particular game is over.

Gregg Terrence

_____________________________________________ my young software developer/business owner son tells me, Apple too is behind the curve in the phone the Droid technology has surpassed the newest developments of the iPhone…he dumped his iPhone months ago in favor of a Droid.
(Sure he was partly spurred by the dreadful service on the AT&T network, but once he had the Droid in hand, he marveled at the technology that leaves even Apple somewhat in the dust.)

(prefer to withhold my name if you should find any reason on this earth to publish this note)


Having owned both an iPhone and my new BB Torch, ill take my Torch any day of the week. Great phone, great ‘proper’ touch screen, new operating system w enhanced browsing, and a real qwerty keyboard…and I don’t have to use iTunes!!!

Mark McMain


I can’t believe you aren’t an iPhone owner already!!

Nathan Schock


I’ve had a Blackberry for 3 years, and I’m a mac geek. I refuse to go with at&t, so someday if verizon ever gets the iphone I will get one. Surfing the web on my blackberry is slower than my old mac mini on dial up. The internet  home screen is just awful. The blackberry makes calls, receives calls, and does email great. Although Until recently it couldn’t even sync with a mac, and now it barely accomplishes this, and when it does it erases contacts and calendar input. Come on iphone/verizon!

Jay Ruston


Most IT techs overseeing medium to large businesses would strongly disagree with you that iphones “just work” and blackberries don’t. This insatiable appetite for free iphone apps – completely ignoring issues of security – is Windows 95 all over again and we all found out just how great Windows was.

Keep your mind open here, because there’s a lot of pain for iphone users ahead.  And at the moment i’m one of them, unfortunately.

Napoleon Computers
New Zealand


Rim Rocks email, text, and BBM.

I phone does everything else.

If they could merge more of the technologies, that would be awesome.

The I phone needs a real keyboard.

Lyle Chausse


I think you will be able to add the iphone to the rim list soon.  My son and his friends that are the tech geeks at his high school are fed up with Steve Jobs dictatorship and are abandoning their iphones in favor of android and/or mobile7.  They do not like the boundaries of and low sound quality itunes or the lack of open source ap development.  The EU is setting laws that should ultimately force the adoption of open source development, but may be a while before it hits our shores.  Until then it seems that the tech kids are veering away from Apple to other options.

It will be interesting to see what happens when the other tablets hit the market. As we all know, computers as we know them today are on borrowed time.  The clouds are coming fast.

Ken Deans


The company that brought you a phone that drops or can’t makes calls and can’t use a basic web technology is the standard? Come on. In reality, Apple is the epitome of the hype machine that you so despise!

Tag Gross


couldn’t agree more.  when my term was up I shopped extensively.  Decided to go with the my touch slide, (T-Mobile, which I’m pretty much locked into as they like to do, but that’s another story), Android but with a slide out physical keyboard so you can use either it or the touchscreen keyboard.

It was back in June when I switched, but it’s the first time in years that I kept watching and waiting for a product to come out with so much anticipation that I was at Best Buy early the morning it came out to grab it.

it’s fantastic.  all the apps you could want, pretty much bulletproof, and I have to tell you, as a 7 year Blackberry user, I honestly can’t see why anyone says Blackberry does email better.  Yeah, I know they have their own servers so you don’t have to connect to the web every time you want mail delivered, but there are several reasons the droid does it better.  Try looking at an extensive excel sheet attachment on a puny Blackberry screen, if it will even display it right at all.  The Droid does it effortlessly.

It’s a great phone.

Mark Lourie


One thing that BBerry has over them all.  Its the easiest device to text/email and drive at the same time.  The keypad really is perfect for holding it in your hands and the wheel at the same time. Other keypads are either too narrow or too wide.

Kind of tongue in cheek, but also kind of true.
Matt Siegel


Having a berry and an iPad is the perfect combo

Angelica Cob-Baehler


I wish… Globe-trot with your iPhone Bob… Nightmare, especially if you’re trying to stay in touch with anyone anywhere else for a reasonable rate. When I’m in Venice, or Paris, or Alicante, where-in-the-hell-ever it’s all about that obsolete BBM sorry. Also, still love the keypad for heavy lifting.

I continue to play with my “apps” on my iPad though.. That’s cool right?

Mike McGlaflin


Hah! so funny!

I recieved this email literally seconds after posting this on facebook…

“Just deleted the floundering facebook app off my blackberry. stupid blackberry.”

Why would you go with PC/Droid/Blackberry when an iPhone and/or iTouch and/or iPad and a Mac Computer with Mobile me will dominate them in nearly every way.  Steve and Co. see the future in a way these other companies simply do not.  They are always playing catchup.

I was putting an item in my ical on my tower today with my iPad calendar app open, seeing how fast it would update through mobile me.  Before I was done editing the event, it showed up on the iPad and within seconds all of the info was there…


Jesse Barney
More convinced in Apple every day.


after shelling out full price for four iphones, i ditched for android (well blackberry first, then finally settled on android). they don’t “just work.” one spontaneously stopped working, one shattered the first time i dropped it, from a table onto carpet, one was lost, and another collects dust in my garage, its hardware already obsolete. at&t sucks; it never came through for me when i needed it. important calls with new clients repeatedly dropped, i’d miss turns on the road when the navigation app couldn’t get a signal. the iphone is a status symbol. it’s not the best device out there, only the “coolest.” that’s all well and good for apple, and more power to them. but i disagree that the apple is triumphing becausr their gear “just works.” that award goes to whatever’s running on verizon.
which, of course, may very well include the iphone next year.
but not yet. for now, the iphone is triumphing because it’s cool. people line up to buy cool sight unseen. those who want reliability take their good old time. and they don’t hang out at intelligentsia just to be seen with it.



RIM isn’t dead yet.  I have two phones. One is on verizon, and the other (work gives me) is on AT&T. I live 3 miles from work, and the AT&T phone will drop a call at least 3 times to my house. Maybe its just a few “dead zones.” I would buy this except one of the dead zones is the hallway of my office. What makes this humorous is that my office has a great view of the AT&T building only 9 blocks away in downtown Nashville. My verizon always has better service than my AT&T and I compare them side by side daily in multiple locations.  I do feel inferior as my friends have great aps on their iphones, but at least verizon let’s you make phone calls.  Isn’t this why we carry phones? I don’t care about the software its about the network, and for now RIM has Verizon and iphones don’t.

Henry Glascock


Eventually you’ll see RIM adapt Android.
Samsung has their own version of Android which does NOT let you upgrade directly.
Meaning when you want to upgrade, Samsung has to do the work.

It’s just a matter of time before RIM will do the same, and it will be designed around the Blackberry Mail system.

There are pros and cons to all handsets. None are perfect, and apps are just like a record collection….
Some you use/listen to more than others, some just collect space, dust or whatever….

Teddy Millmoor


I have to raise my hand about BBM though. My children and loads of other kids in the UK use BBM to talk to each other because its free. It’s a classic abuse of technology (see Kevin Kelly What Technology Wants, a fantastic book btw) as they realised that they could get cheap PAYG phones and yet have access to an ‘always on’ technology for nothing.

So how will RIM make a business out of that opportunity?

J.C. Reid


Hey bob!

Like this story but what about the more open source approach of googles Android and HTC phones… Surely apples down fall is the closed source nature of the system…

Geoff Widdowson


I think on my last BB too Bob but the key pad… That’s the ONLY reason I can’t let go!!

Will Bloomfield


I am Canadian and I beat my chest over rim, but I think blackberrys are sticking around.  I have an ipod touch which is basically an iphone without the phone or data so in my house its an iphone, but I would never send an email over an iphone.  I can type without looking on my blackberry and I certainly can’t on my ipod touch.

You got it right, blackberrys do email the best and iphones do everything.  But guess what, my xbox plays video games the best buy my computer does everything, even plays video games almost as well as my xbox.  It doesn’t mean I’m not gonna get on xbox.

I would never by an iphone until it at least gets a flash player.  In the mean time my ipod touch is collecting dust.

Rafe Malach


(Please do not use my name if you print this email.)

No way, Bob.  Try writing 100+ emails every day on an iPhone. Misspellings and cramped fingers at twice the time it takes to draft an errorless pain free email on a blackberry.  Nothing beats a blackberry for long emails. I can type better on my blackberry with my eyes closed than on an iPhone with my eyes open. But the blackberry phone is awful.  And surfing the web on it is a joke So, I carry an iPhone and blackberry.   All work emails are read and answered on my blackberry which does not have phone capability. And if I can’t read an attachment or need to click on a link, I forward the email to my iPhone.  Sounds ridiculous, but I know I’m not the only maniac employing this strategy.  Until the iPhone has a tactile equivalent keyboard, I’m not giving up my blackberry.



Jamie Kuse


You are spot on in your observation of blackberry! Well said sir!

Sent from my iPhone

Shawn Forez


Apps have changed my life  Couldn’t live without them and have so much fun with them…Ipad is best for them….but any machine that can use all of Apples’ apps and or the bulk of the Android Market will be enough fun and usefulness for you…Get going…you will not believe what you are missing out on!!   Time’s a wasting!

Leigh Goldstein


If I could get AT&T service in my house, I would switch from the BB to the IPhone. Unfortunately, I can’t. That’s really pathetic.

Andy Peikon


You can’t talk on a IPhone.

Kevin G. Shivers


A little too much hyperbole there.  RIM may not be #1 for long, but there is plenty of room in the exploding smart phone market to be #2 or even #4.   And the problem with the iPhone is that typing is a total disaster.  So if you want to do anything involving words, you are sunk.

Jordan Jacobs


With the same thinking Bob last week att let me trade a new bberry for a Samsung  focus windows phone.  Documents, web, voice instruction to find anybody  or anywhere, definitely makes bberry old hat

Doug Mark


Unless the need for a really efficient, secure, proprietary handheld device serves no purpose in Our ” never been a time like Now for secrecy ” World, I think You’re bang on.

‘Cept I’m a Canadian. And RIM is doing The Damned Thing, without trying to be anything that They can’t Be, or Aren’t.

Randy Geider


Dan Millen:

?There’s a Droid pro with your name on it Bob.
Even if Apple does make a Verizon iPhone try Android. I’ve had them all and they all have their quirks but Android is the best and this EVO I’m typing to you on is the best smartphone I have ever had.


When the iPhone was released in 2007, I asked a friend who is a RIM sales guy what he thought. “Piece of crap… We’re not worried!” One year later, declining BB sales, and apps were becoming a big thing. Fast forward to today and I give RIM 3-5 years before being bought out or shoveled under. And I say this as I live in RIM Town of Kitchener-Waterloo. Here’s the problem, which is very similar to big wig music companies… They’re so caught up in the “current” success that they can’t see the future and PREPARE! If RIM were so smart, they would of been the first to do an app store. Apple’s got it right… Make great looking hardware, give software to developers for programming apps, and offer them a store to distribute worldwide, 24/7… Success! Simple!

RIM’s latest offering of the Torch is a joke… The processor is 2-3 years old, screen resolution is pitiful, and still…no REAL apps. And the “Playbook”? Talk about bad marketing…no real demos, no price (at the time), and to show it 6 months early? What’s the point? Apple will have iPad version 2 in January and the Playbook will be Deadbook.

Since I got my iPad, I barely use my laptops, I run my studio from it, it’s my daytimer, my speaker phone, my music idea sketchpad, reader, doodle sketcher, game machine, video player, music player, I have 3G anywhere, and APPS galore! Especially great music apps which are only going to get better with the new OS. Hell, my studio is off the grid with solar power and there are cool apps even for checking solar assessment!

Yesterday, I also saw the Samsung Galaxy and what a joke! Screen brightness is pathetic, it responds terribly, and the smaller screen… No wonder Jobs said it doesn’t work well! Yep… Bal”silly”, just like many major music “execs”, don’t get it! It’s about the customer experience, having us NOT want to be anywhere without it, inspiring us and showing it off to friends. RIM and their BBM… Who cares? Most nobody… Especially once they use an iPhone! Sorry RIM… You’re future is limited unless some amazing thing happens that make people want your product… But the decline is happening with every financial quarter.

Ian Graham

RIM employee:

So much I could say about all these replies as a guy who knows the inner workings, but can’t….I personally am going to shift to an iphone for personal use. Ought to say something.

Again, no name please

& keep it up, love reading your take on this stuff! Keep well!



As an employee of a popular cell phone company who may or may not get the iPhone, I am confident in saying I agree with most people who say RIM is at its last breath. The typical consumer who walks in my store wants one of these things:

1. iPhone. Yet they have no idea why, they just want one because everyone else in New York City has one

2. A phone like the iPhone with applications and mimics Apple’s iOS because they are sick of the rumors a certain company is getting the iPhone

3. Blackberry. 99.9% of the time people who already had Blackberry’s in the past will get another one and another one and another and continue to come back disappointed

The bottom line is RIM can’t possibly stack up to iOS or Android for that matter. The days of “I just need my phone just for e-mail” are fading away. We are entering a world of pure mobility and the music industry will benefit off of this. RIM missed that boat awhile ago. Once they run out of residual customers it’s hard to predict their market share.

Ryan McDonald


As a follow up, sales numbers are in for black Friday, and I figure you would want to know. Now, as a backstory, RIM is running a big sales contest with my 3rd party Sprint company, top blackberry sellers get pretty decent prizes. Also, the new flip blackberry was on BOGO, which is a pretty big special.

My company (Sprint exclusive) sold 100 phones on black Friday. 7 of those phones were blackberrys. I don’t care whether one is cheering for blackberry or not, that’s pretty awful. On my specific store end, 15 out of 19 sales were Android.

In response to the RIM employee, well I don’t find the blackberry 6 web browser good in anyway. At most it is equal, it is the same browser android and apple and Microsoft use. And blackberry has apps, but people don’t care, they know Android and iPhone have a better selection.

Also, Android has voice to text, so its mostly even safer to text and drive with than blackberry.

?Jim Bellizzi


RIM isn’t dead… just their image. I feel bad for this RIM employee’s reply. Drinking the corporate Kool-aid. I could care less how “great” these new BBerry apps are. They had their shot 2 years ago but they failed. 2 years in tech is way too long. A Blackberry is the smartphone for your parents.

PS: The Nobex Radio companion app (which I had on my old BBerry 2 years ago) is garbage. Why on earth would you brag about this app? It’s like comparing Commodore64 to a Playstation 4! lol.. And the other apps.. guess what? They’re on iPhone and Android too. Plus a million other, better, greater apps.

Also.. Did you notice how your post on RIM generated so much more debate (I’m assuming) than a post on something music industry related. What does this say about Tech trumping Music as the “it” thing to be into nowadays? lol.

(please withhold name if you post)


I loved my blackberry until I had a problem with it. Never trust your service provider to give you tech support. The moment I had a problem with my MacBook I took it into an Apple store and had someone fix it up in minutes. Behold: True customer service! I was sold and got myself an iPhone asap. The touch screen took a day or two to get used to. Now I’m used to a phone that does everything I want it to. Brilliant. Why cant RIM have customer service centers with trained people to give you hands-on solutions? Why do I have to talk to someone from my service provider when they don’t make the products? Makes no sense.

And I’ve seen the “Playbook”. An attempt by RIM to stay in the game that I predict wont even last a year. Its a piece of garbage. I dont think that RIM truly understands WHY Apple is doing so well and why their products continue to top the market. Until they get a firm grasp on that they’ll never be able to compete with them at their own game.

Please don’t print my name.


I don’t mean this to be crass in anyway but for those into music and Apps then undeniably you go with an Iphone but if your interest is in getting laid then you stick with RIM purely for the BBM. BBM for guys in my age group (26 male) is like Aol was in the 90’s, only with bbm its like the girls are online all of the time whereas with Aol you had to be signed on. The ability to have instant access to people on bbm without having to go out of your way to call or text is a huge perk and though a lot of my friends would love to go the Iphone for the myriad of other functions it provides they fear the social loss of BBM.

Jarred Arfa


the chance that RIM was not involved in the making of the Swaggberry “song” is 0.00

Graham Farrar


Saw Om Malik on TWIT with Leo Laporte last week, and he nailed it. The Blackberry does just two things well: Email and phone calls. The iPhone and Android can do just about everything else.

It’s really not likely we’ll be saying anything different three years from now. Corporate IT departments who need devices to act as a 24-hour lifeline to their employees via email and phone will continue to choose the Blackberry for that purpose.

Richard Tafoya


In response to RIM employee.

I guess the “fart apps” you’re referring to are the 3 out of the 4
URL’s that showcased something resembling annoying attempts a music.

The one URL exhibiting speed tests between an iPad and The Blackberry is your idea of “fun stuff?”

Tear yourself away from that little screen, run down to The Life Store and pick some up!!

Marvin Kanarek


There was a time when Toyota wasn’t the leader. They made the best cars, but for some reason people were still buying the Ford Taurus. In less than a decade, that all changed. The same will apply to RIM. Especially once the touch screen becomes the standard versus the exception to the rule. I had a BB for three years. Loved it. The learning curve for the iPhone screen was about a month. The intuitive spell checker (it knows when I want to spell ‘asshat’) makes it easy. Likewise, I can now type without looking at the screen.

Tony Bosco


RIM will become a small niche brand for the corporate email-heavy crowd the day Verizon gets the iPhone. My wife recently relocated to L.A. to start a new job and was issued an iPhone by the company. She loved it but had to abandon it after realizing the AT&T signal is just too spotty to do business. She switched to a Verizon Blackberry….for now. (I’m still back East, happy with a Droid X. With the PowerAmp music player app, Rhapsody for Android app, and RadioParadise app, I do not feel the need for an iPod/iPhone whatsoever. People who have invested heavily in Apple’s monopolistic 99 cent iTunes tracks want the iPhone, though.)

-Dave Lackey


I’m not surprised the RIM Employee is unaware of the fact Swaggberry is “blowing up in clubs.” I was unaware to. I’m sure many people were unaware. Why? Because it ISN’T!

Sam Leon

P.S. Brokers never believe in AAPL. In general, they’re clueless.


Many of your detractors on this issue are missing the point. Blackberry isn’t going away tomorrow. They’ll probably even be around several years from now. I understand your point to be that they have ceded their leadership position.

This is a classic example of market leader blindness–and the notes from the BB employee prove it. Once you reach the top you start to think it is going to last forever so you start playing defense instead of offense. (Sounds a lot like the music business!!!)

There is an old-school marketing book called “Marketing Warfare” by Al Ries and Jack Troutt. They say the only way a leader can stay the leader is to become their own competitor. They call it, “The courage to attack yourself.” I wish we had learned this in the music industry 10 years ago.

Dean Diehl
Director, Music Business Program
Trevecca Nazarene University


Suspected Bob was losing it…or been paid off….the Blackberry tirade so out of touch..he’s just too old to work it out is the truth…kiss the Apple goodbye soon. Wall Street wants to cash in the gains the shares have hiked over the years….



Bob, I manage a band of 7 guys who are varying degrees of tech obsessed and who, when not on stage or recording, live on their smartphones on the road. They recently performed at a fundraiser sponsored by a wireless carrier. Each band member got to choose ANY smartphone plus coverage for free. Previously among them they had been using everything: BBerrys, iPhones, Androids, HTC, etc.

To my complete surprise they all chose BlackBerry’s Torch. They said the balanced tipped to BBerry because of BBM, which makes coordinating and decision-making among 7 guys simple….and the typing (social media updates/email/BBM) is so much better on BBerry than iPhone.

Jordan Jacobs


Funny to see someone else who was told not to invest in Apple. Five years ago my wifes’ investment guy said don’t bother with Apple, its a fad. I think at the time the stock was below 100 bucks. She insisted in buying some, and now it’s in the stratosphere. I wish we bought more!

Jay Ruston


“Anyway, I do think there is likely going to be an Apple backlash as people start to get sick of being told to love and worship Apple, but that’s just my opinion)”

This is a dude who does not own an apple. Fact.

I cracked my screen on my mac book on my motor bike and went in today to the mac store. “Good news” the chap said, “It’s free and I’ll do it now”. Imagine that on your dell or toshiba. In fact, where would you even go?

This guy’s attitude makes me want to ditch the blackberry now. And yes, I’ve checked out the apps. Well, I’ve tried to. The app store won’t load on my new BB Bold. Case closed?

Will Bloomfield


what’s wrong with me? i have a blackberry. i love it. i want a phone that makes it easy to talk (ie: you hit the “answer” button to answer it – not take 3 actions to answer it) and that will let me get my email and send it. having a browser is a bonus. i only use it for amusement when i’m bored/waiting somewhere. it has a GPS app, but other than that, i don’t want apps. i had all of the so-called “i-phone killers” verizon offers. i hated them all and sent them back within hours. i like my electronic stuff to be discrete.

there’s this nifty adage: a chacun a son gout – or in english: to each his own. and for me, blackberry is PERFECT

Theresa K.


Right on…

Droid rocks. I switched from my crappy Blackberry Storm to the Droid X in August and could not be happier.



You want to talk about behind the curve? Who talks on phones anymore?

Evan Richards


Blackberry = Betamax

I couldn’t care less who thinks it is ‘better’

They lost.
Forget it

Whatever the iPhone does next, everyone else will copy 6 months later

It’s clear to anyone paying attention who is LEADING.

Sent from my iPhone

W. Wittman


the processor on the torch is the same processor as what’s in the Tour / Bold which is a 500mhz low power ARM processor, which means if you want to use a full browser or any kind of processor intensive app you can expect the clockspin of death for about half a minute before anything happens. The whole touchscreen blackberry OS was put together as patchwork over the same old crap OS that was outdated three years ago.

Never thought I’d see Blackberry go the way of Palm but it’s gonna happen soon.

I’ve talked to several Torch owners and all of them are disappointed.
And the blackberry “playbook” ??? Is that a joke???

Can you say Palm Foleo anyone?

Dan Millen


I am convinced that we have the iPhone because Steve Jobs had a Blackberry. Seriously!

I am a dedicated iPhone user because it just works, and can be used without referring to a huge instruction manual.

Earlier this year I received a company Blackberry – I gave up on every feature and just use it as a phone only. It is only better than the iPhone in one area – it has better and louder warning tones – but that is it. For me it’s a decent phone, nothing else.

The iPhone beats it hands down.

Peter Brentnall


What exactly does RIM do so magically with email? I’ve never ridden that train so I have no idea.

I do know that I have three active email addresses with a unified inbox. I search and find email based on even the most hail-Mary queries. I send and view documents. All from iPhone.

Does RIM email do my laundry? Seems like an odd thing to cling to, though I must admit my curiosity is piqued.

Dave Peters

PS Several of the RIM touters and Apple doubters must have typed their email from the dreaded iPhone ‘touch keyboard’ they can’t stand because some of their emails look like lines of HTML code.

The only drawback I’ve experienced with no physical keyboard is that I can’t text without looking/while driving. But…should I anyway? It can wait.


I got an ipod touch today.
Played around for 1/2 hour then picked up my Bberry again…wow my berry felt like old technology.



I believe that the great art that we miss so badly was the result of creative minds who were bored to tears. Today you have to fight to not have somebody vying for your attention. Today we are in awe that Justin Vernon goes into a snowed-in cabin for the winter and comes out with a masterpiece. What else was he supposed to do? I can’t believe it was a coincidence that the closest thing we’ve gotten to the magic of the music of the 60’s and 70’s came from accidentally recreating the mental isolation of that time.

Elton John is completely right about what has destroyed art, and the iPhone is leading the charge. It’s a phone, but it gives an outlet for that unspent mental energy that might before have come up with a great lyric or a moving melody. I switched to blackberry because my iPhone was throwing salt on my proverbial fields. Is that a reason that most people will care about? Probably not.

WWPMcCD? (What Would Paul McCartney Do?),

John Paul (my mother was a Catholic Beatles fan) Roney


Work at a well known indie record company, have been using Blackberry before they even became fashionable to use.

I recently got a 2nd phone a Tmobile G2 to go along with my Blackberry 9780. The G2 has been the closest phone I’ve used to possibly replacing my BB. I constantly use my G2 for any google searches and to fulfill my app appetite. Its just so damn fast! And the new Tmobile network is faster than my home DSL.

The BB is still king in text, keyboard, email and BBM, but please believe the G2 does everything else better!

Need to check movies, gas stations, sleeping sounds, games, twitter, no problem! The day is nearing when I will pry the BB keyboard from my hands, its just inevitable, the G2 has shown me that.

Hollywood Henry


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