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2013 a year to forget for BlackBerry

Posted: , by Alan F.

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2013 a year to forget for BlackBerry
This has not been a great year for BlackBerry no matter how you look at it. 2013 started so full of promise. On January 30th, the first BlackBerry 10 handset was introduced, the all-touch BlackBerry Z10. Despite word from then-CEO Thorsten Heins that sales of the device were above expectations in March, the company had to write off nearly $1 billion of the device in its fiscal second quarter, and wrote off another $2.7 billion of BlackBerry 10 models in the following quarter.

Other new BlackBerry 10 handsets followed. There was a lot of hope placed on the launch of the QWERTY-equipped BlackBerry Q10. Even Heins was hopeful that the physical QWERTY would attract long time BlackBerry users. But the Q10 also failed. The last device launched during the Thorsten Heins era was a device that he had said back in March that he was excited about, the BlackBerry Z30. But the first 5 inch 'Berry, with a 2880mAh battery, couldn't help.

By September, the writing was on the wall. The company said that it wanted to be sold by November and 19 days later, BlackBerry's largest stockholder agreed to buy the company for $9 a share and take it private. Despite talk that other big names were circling the company, like Cisco, Google, Microsoft and others, no other deal surfaced. Then, during the first few days of November, Fairfax Financial pulled out of the privatization deal, replacing it with a $1 billion funding package. Thorsten Heins left with a $22 million golden parachute, and John Chen was named as CEO.

Following the announcement of a massive $4.4 billion fiscal third quarter loss (after a one-time charge), Chen announced a five year deal with Foxconn under which the contract manufacturer will design, build, and warehouse low and mid-range models for emerging markets. BlackBerry itself will still build high-end models with two such handsets in the works.

An article in the New York Times on Tuesday mentioned how uncool it is to own a BlackBerry these days. But some are still forced to for security reasons to use a 'Berry (we're looking at you, Mr. President) and some still report how they can't type a paragraph on the iPhone, but can type 10 pages using the physical QWERTY on the BlackBerry.

With that in mind, perhaps we can give Mr. Chen a thought, a New Year's resolution if you will, for the company he now is in charge of. Considering that of the 4.3 million BlackBerry models that were shipped in fiscal Q3, 3.2 million were running BlackBerry 7 OS, maybe it is time to give up the thought of chasing iOS, Android and even Windows Phone. Take one of your older models, like the still fabulous BlackBerry Bold 9900/9930, keep the older OS on it and sell it everywhere as a phone, business tool and email device. Based on those who still use a BlackBerry these days, that is all that they want out of their device. Take Robin Zachary, a stylist, who says that she is missing out because of the lack of popular apps for the platform. "The party’s going on on Instagram, and I feel left out," she says. But there's nary a chance that she will give up her BlackBerry. Why? "I can type faster than a speeding bullet on that keyboard." Mr.Chen, focus on BlackBerry users like Ms. Zachary and perhaps 2014 will be a better year for your company.

"(Owning a BlackBerry is) not cool or even retro-cool. I just can’t write a whole paragraph on an iPhone but I’ve written 10-page briefs on my BlackBerry."-Roberta Kaplan, partner, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison

source: NYTimes

19 Comments
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posted on 27 Dec 2013, 00:08 1

1. DEATHSTROKE9 (Posts: 399; Member since: 09 Nov 2013)


Lol I forgot there was company called blackberry

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 01:31

10. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5866; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)


It would be ironic if BB/RIM were to dump their 10 series phones and went back to the Bold 9900/9930....

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 00:13 3

2. xperiaDROID (limited) (Posts: 5577; Member since: 08 Mar 2013)


I won't forget BlackBerry, I'm excited to see what they will bring to the table next year. Their phones are not bad, it's just that the lack of apps on the App World makes people not interested on BB phones at all.

Let's see what they can do with their next year flagship - BlackBerry Z50. Good luck, BlackBerry!

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 00:32 1

3. DEATHSTROKE9 (Posts: 399; Member since: 09 Nov 2013)


Android and windows phone are the future. iOS and blackberry are the past.

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 00:38 4

4. xperiaDROID (limited) (Posts: 5577; Member since: 08 Mar 2013)


Android - Yes, it's the future.
Windows Phone - Without Nokia, it's not the future.
iOS - Yes, it's still the future.
BlackBerry - Don't know, but there's still a chance.

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 00:42

5. TreyTreyTaylor (Posts: 309; Member since: 21 Dec 2010)


As much as I used to love them, it's over. Not because it's uncool to have one, but because long gone are the years where the typical consumer sees BlackBerry as a competitor to anything. That plus the fact that similarly priced phones take craps all over Z30. People have proven that App Stores and ecosystem matter alot.

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 00:58

7. xperiaDROID (limited) (Posts: 5577; Member since: 08 Mar 2013)


I don't think it's over, because I think that this new CEO can save BlackBerry. The problems are only the ecosystem and the lack of apps on the App World, their phones are not bad. I hope they will add more apps (not the crap ones) to the App World.

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 00:52

6. victory_zhou (Posts: 38; Member since: 03 Oct 2013)


Ya I own a BlackBerry q10 and I can really type dawn fast on that keyboard. Aman to BlackBerry

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 01:00

8. ialex123 (Posts: 21; Member since: 18 Dec 2013)


Recent, Blackberry Z30 comes with nice features (for details gadgetridecom), i hope that the company will also offering nice device with nice features in future.

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 01:23

9. mariosraptor (Posts: 110; Member since: 15 Mar 2012)


Is this a f*****g serious journalist writing, or is it with blessings of Apple and Samsung?
Yes it is uncool to own a BlackBerry.....if you're a sh*ep, or a monkey!!!
Get a life and stop harassing.
Bb10 is not Symbian to let it die and return to legacy OS. Is a great and powerful OS which only needs some marketing with more apps. Period.
The onlly OS in mind it has to go head to head is Android, which more customizable.
You laugh next year with its steady growth which will reclaim the 3d place atleast.

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 02:19

11. ihavenoname (Posts: 1442; Member since: 18 Aug 2013)


Sorry dude, I see that you love BB, but unfortunately they don't seem to have much chance. Z30, Z10 are great phones, but Blackberry was late. Ecosystem is just so weak. Sad to se old king so down.

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 03:30

12. kennyblack_sd (Posts: 26; Member since: 15 Nov 2013)


With 10.2.1.1925 OS on your BlackBerry 10 you can download apk files which means you have 2 ecosystem is one, you can load an android app directly and still load a BlackBerry app. So that makes it a better android

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 04:02

13. sianto (Posts: 65; Member since: 11 Dec 2013)


In theory you're right, but Android apps run a little better on Android phones (well, on the high end ones). On the other hand IS BB10 working pretty nicely. I wouldn't sell my Z10 unless I get the Z50.

You will hear a lot from BB when they're back on their feet!

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 04:42

14. shihte (Posts: 10; Member since: 02 Sep 2013)


the problem is that bb is not popular btw people .bb fail in advertising of new bb10 and also price was very high at start otherwise their soft is better and much modern then android and ios and also wp.I personaly bought my 1st bb this year after 4years on android and one bad try on wp so can say it! bb10 is much better os for users,bb is on the higher level then big trio.people just must once try and most of them never come back to their previous os.it is my opinion...

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 06:44

15. getothepoint (Posts: 4; Member since: 27 Dec 2013)


2013, a year to forget phones manufactured by companies that care about the humane treatment of employees...or child slaves.

posted on 27 Dec 2013, 21:47

16. x78_nothing (Posts: 53; Member since: 07 Feb 2013)


i choose BB10 ( i have two devices) not because i can't afford android or iphone. In my opinion no other phone can handle email management and messanging better than BB10, tried android even highend device such htc one, i couldn't leave BB10 i miss hub and BB 10 gesture. BB10 os doenst have home button, but all screen feels like home... amazing. One of my BB use leaks os 10.2.1.1925 - instagram and other apps works flawless. No reason to buy android.

posted on 28 Dec 2013, 02:07

17. xoxoGeorges (Posts: 207; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)


The keyboard on the Q10 is phenomenal.

posted on 28 Dec 2013, 21:48

18. apiskula (banned) (Posts: 578; Member since: 25 Jan 2013)


Blackberry is done. They will finally die in 2014

posted on 29 Dec 2013, 06:36

19. getothepoint (Posts: 4; Member since: 27 Dec 2013)


Makers of the Blackberry are innovators. Unfortunately, as with everything, the imitators lure the consumers with their cheap knock-offs and innovation is stagnated. Luckily, while the imitators race to build bigger and more gimmicky phones, another innovator ( Apple) is moving on to full 64bit support.

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