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RIM CEO Heins responds to NY Times article about ashamed BlackBerry users

Posted: , by Alan F.

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RIM CEO Heins responds to NY Times article about ashamed BlackBerry users
"I feel absolutely helpless. You’re constantly watching people do all these things on their phones and all I have going for me is my family’s group BBM chats."-Victoria Gossage, BlackBerry user
On Tuesday, the New York Times published a story about how many BlackBerry owners are actually ashamed to be seen in public with their handset. One sales representative, Rachel Crosby, revealed how she hides her BlackBerry underneath her Apple iPad so that her clients won't see her phone. Three years ago, RIM owned 40% of the U.S. smartphone market, a figure that is now down to 8%. The company lost $753 million in the first half of the year versus $1 billion in profits during the same time period in 2011. Luckily for RIM, the BlackBerry is still held in high regard in India and in Africa.

The Times even noted how many businesses are moving away from BlackBerry which was once RIM's bread and butter. Yahoo's new CEO, Marissa Mayer had company employees trade in their Berry for an Apple iPhone or Android model. Even the president, at one time an ardent BlackBerry fan, now favors his Apple iPad at work. One musician had a put down for BlackBerry users, comparing them to those still on MySpace.

Current RIM flagship, the BlackBerry Bold 9930

Current RIM flagship, the BlackBerry Bold 9930

After reading the story, RIM CEO Thorsten Heins replied to the New York Times with a Letter to the Editor. Claiming that the story lacked the balance that the paper is known for, he reminded the Times that RIM still has 80 million accounts and that there are millions of BlackBerry owners that are proud to be a 'Berry user. Heins pointed out that 90% of the Fortune 500 (that would be 450 companies) rely on BlackBerry smartphones. In response to an Apple iPhone user, who was quoted in Tuesday's story as saying that she constantly had to open the Yelp and Open Table apps on her phone because her husband uses a BlackBerry, Heins said that both Yelp and Open Table are available amongst the 100,000 apps in BlackBerry AppWorld. Heins added that BlackBerry 10 is on track to launch in Q1 of 2013, something that should make BlackBerry fans happy.

Still, many BlackBerry users are discouraged. One, whose name is on the waiting list for an Apple iPhone 5, says that once he gets his iPhone, he will grab his BlackBerry, take the battery out, fill it with cement and use it as a paperweight.

“BlackBerry as Black Sheep in Smartphones” (Business Day, Oct. 16) lacks the balance your readers expect.

With more than 80 million customers globally, BlackBerry is growing and remains one of the world’s most popular smartphones. I’ve just come from visiting carriers and partners in all parts of the world, and they have told me that there are millions of BlackBerry fans out there who not only find great value in their device, but also pride in being a BlackBerry owner.

While any report of dissatisfaction among our users is a cause for concern that I take very seriously, the comments supporting BlackBerry both online and in calls we’ve received from our customers in response to your article are encouraging to me.

BlackBerry remains the leader in providing security for corporate customers, which is why more than 90 percent of the Fortune 500 rely on BlackBerry. It’s true that some companies put restrictions on accessing certain applications for security reasons, but applications like Yelp and OpenTable are, in fact, among the approximately 100,000 apps available in BlackBerry AppWorld.

We’ve received excellent feedback from carriers, developers and partners for our upcoming BlackBerry 10 platform and are on track to deliver it in the first quarter of 2013. We appreciate the customers who have remained loyal to the BlackBerry platform and look forward to winning back many who have left.

THORSTEN HEINS
President and Chief Executive
Research In Motion
Waterloo, Ontario, Oct. 16, 2012

source: NYTimes (1), (2) via MobileSyrup

94 Comments
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posted on 17 Oct 2012, 19:13 35

1. someones4 (Posts: 625; Member since: 16 Sep 2012)


It's one thing to insult a smartphone, it is another thing to insult an entire ecosystem of company and users. "Ashamed"? Funny how people are ashamed of a phone when they can so freely post slutty pictures on the internet.

posted on 17 Oct 2012, 21:22 17

29. CellularNinja (Posts: 306; Member since: 27 Sep 2011)


Agreed! I am not a blackberry fan myself. I wouldn't use one as my personal device, but I appreciate what they bring to the table, and I hope that they can bounce back in the near future. The article NYTimes posted annoys me.

posted on 18 Oct 2012, 00:25 3

60. bayusuputra (Posts: 963; Member since: 12 Feb 2012)


Same here.. I really hope that BB 10 OS will bring the company back.. From the preview, it is a better and fresher UI than iOS with all the gestures and stuff.. It's quite like MeeGo in some ways..

posted on 18 Oct 2012, 02:38

67. webOSlove (unregistered)


No. It looks like webOS. looks like RIM couldnt think of anything ao they stole the webOS interface and called it BB10. I get "borrowing" but they just took the whole damn thing and just called it BB10

posted on 18 Oct 2012, 03:22 3

70. someones4 (Posts: 625; Member since: 16 Sep 2012)


At least they are not hypocrites like a certain fruit company. A pot calling the kettle black

posted on 18 Oct 2012, 15:03 3

82. webOSlove (unregistered)


I have respect for BlackBerry, but come on, really? They're making the same mistakes as HP and Palm... Delay, after delay after delay..... By the time 2013 comes, everyone will have passed BB10 and will makes BB10 look old and outdated. I was excited in 2011 for BB10, but after a year long delay, I don't even care anymore, I just lost interest

posted on 28 Oct 2012, 06:28

89. CellularNinja (Posts: 306; Member since: 27 Sep 2011)


Considering your name, I take all of that with a grain of salt. Maybe just a little bias there.

posted on 28 Oct 2012, 15:39

90. webOSlove (unregistered)


Not bias. Just facts. They are repeating Palm's mistakes. And I WAS excited,but now ive just lost interest because of the delays. Its not arty waiting for in my opinion.

posted on 18 Oct 2012, 05:23 1

73. smartphone (Posts: 160; Member since: 21 Oct 2011)


The article had clearly some grudge against BlackBerry, only a stupid person will be ashamed of holding a 9930 bold.
Insulting a whole ecosystem is just bad

Again it explains that many people buy iPhones to hide their inferiority complex. As they think it will help them look cool.

posted on 18 Oct 2012, 08:01 1

79. someones4 (Posts: 625; Member since: 16 Sep 2012)


in some sense, RIM is somehow at fault for its current predicament. No innovation, incompetitive prices, and little features. it may be good for business or power users but it cannot satisfy the rest of us who always wanted more. let's see how bb10 fares against android.

posted on 29 Oct 2012, 10:34

92. CellularNinja (Posts: 306; Member since: 27 Sep 2011)


That's true. But I almost kind of like that the U.S. is infested with iPhones, because it makes my Samsung Galaxy S3 all that better! Stands out in the crowd of boring iPhones.

posted on 17 Oct 2012, 21:39

35. BillyG (Posts: 305; Member since: 24 Sep 2012)


i bet those people who freely post slutty pictures mostly those blackberry users... their motto might be : if you can't show your phone, show your 'stuff'...

posted on 17 Oct 2012, 22:45

48. JunkCreek (Posts: 407; Member since: 13 Jul 2012)


it is easier using BBM to show your "stuff" because all ecosystem using the same app: BBM. In Andriod we hardly can distributed the "stuff" because there is so many app to do: WhatApps, EBudy, LINE, EBudy XMS, KakaoTalk ect. SO, yes, BB has successfully implemented general messenger apps with BBM in its own ecosystem.

We need general messenger just like what RIM did with BBM, so we can freely distributed our "stuff" to others easily.

Heheheh.

posted on 18 Oct 2012, 17:43 1

85. squeeb (Posts: 99; Member since: 02 Dec 2011)


You have one, its called GOOGLE TALK!

posted on 01 Nov 2012, 04:33

93. JunkCreek (Posts: 407; Member since: 13 Jul 2012)


Got thumbs down, must be because of that "STUFFS"

heheheh.

posted on 18 Oct 2012, 05:24

74. lyndon420 (Posts: 4559; Member since: 11 Jul 2012)


I've never had a fruit phone...didn't stop me from having fun on the internet.

posted on 18 Oct 2012, 16:49

84. Republican (Posts: 99; Member since: 05 Apr 2012)


Simple. They can all regain their status symbol as part of the elite by moving to the only real choice, the iPhone 5.

posted on 28 Oct 2012, 15:40

91. webOSlove (unregistered)


Iphone 5 is not the only high class phone on the market.

posted on 17 Oct 2012, 19:18 7

2. wendygarett (unregistered)


Oh Heins, if you feel helpless, you should release the blackberry 10 now

posted on 17 Oct 2012, 20:44 1

23. PapaSmurf (Posts: 10457; Member since: 14 May 2012)


BB10 isn't ready to hit the shelves.

posted on 17 Oct 2012, 21:26 3

32. BillyG (Posts: 305; Member since: 24 Sep 2012)


it might never will, they keep pushing back the release date... with iOS, JellyBean, and WP8 coming, i doubt BB10 can compete except in developing country such as india and indonesia (their biggest user, i bet from those 80 millions, 70+ millions users are in asia), because BB is cheap there, and you don't have to buy dataplan to use BIS, you can BBM but can't open website etc... maybe RIM should move from canada and build their company in asia that clearly in demand for that kind of phones...

posted on 17 Oct 2012, 21:47 5

39. Mittal (Posts: 493; Member since: 14 Dec 2011)


tell u what. Blackberry is NOT cheap here in India. It is priced generally on the higher side.
We HAVE to buy expensive dataplans for using BBM and the internet
So that leaves us with only some kind of enterprise use that can justify a smartfone that is small in features but big on the pocket
But even youngsters, for some wierd reason (BBM) are drawn to it. Beats me why!
But all that is changing now... lately BB popularity seems to be declining here in India as well

posted on 18 Oct 2012, 03:23 2

71. someones4 (Posts: 625; Member since: 16 Sep 2012)


BB's are expensive in my country as well. You can get a good moto phone or a sony for the price of a BB.

posted on 18 Oct 2012, 06:52

75. dgozz (Posts: 1; Member since: 18 Oct 2012)


BillyG u seem to have a problem with india and asia than u do with bb. whats d matter? pissed cause they can afford wat u cant.... get a grip, if u dont like what u see. glue ur eyes shut... one more thing, they do have the expensive data plans and it is NOT cheap... obviously u spoke out of share ignorance or stupidity pehaps....

posted on 17 Oct 2012, 19:19 8

3. XPERIA-KNIGHT (unregistered)


"One sales representative, Rachel Crosby, revealed how she hides her BlackBerry underneath her Apple iPad so that her clients won't see her phone."

Well first off how do you have an expensive ass ipad but a low grade phone??

posted on 17 Oct 2012, 19:37 2

5. wendygarett (unregistered)


Low grade phone? You joking right?

posted on 17 Oct 2012, 19:42 2

6. XPERIA-KNIGHT (unregistered)


well im jus sayin if it wasnt low grade then why does she feel she has to "hide" it?

posted on 17 Oct 2012, 19:48

10. wendygarett (unregistered)


Oops, my misunderstood again, I should learn more English before the comment, thank you once again lol...

You know what? If RIM make a very shiny phone like Apple did, I am happy to turn to blacksheep anytime :D

posted on 17 Oct 2012, 19:47 4

9. pikapowerize (banned) (Posts: 1869; Member since: 03 May 2012)


lol...BlackBerry phones looks elite than those of samsung's!

compare s3 to bold 9900... s3 looks expensive coz of its huge screen but all made of plastic!

while bold 9900 looks and feels you're an elite!

posted on 17 Oct 2012, 20:34 5

17. Nikolas.Oliver (banned) (Posts: 1574; Member since: 01 Jul 2012)


Bold 9900 Is made of plastic too

LOL! S3 is 100000000000000000000000000000000000))000000000000​0000000000000000000000000000000 times better than bold9900

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