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Research Blackberry

Blackberry should worry about consumers 'moving away' from products says distribution partner


By Stephen Lepitak, -

October 13, 2011 | 4 min read

The CEO of a training and distribution partner for Blackberry, STS Digital has said that Blackberry should be worried about consumers ‘moving away’ from its product offering following its second service outage this week.

David Coleman, who heads up the Glasgow company which works with agencies to show them how to best use Blackberry for their business needs, has highlighted the problems faced by the phone’s parent company Research in Motion.

"RIM don't have their troubles to seek. On the back of an ever decreasing market share and the announcement last month of a sharp reduction in profit and sales, RIM were probably hoping that the bad news ended there. They obviously haven't heard the old adage that bad luck comes in threes...fours and now fives. 2011 is fast turning into a "lost or lets completely forget" year for the RIM senior management team of Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis. Both of these individuals unsurprisingly remain upbeat, that's what you would expect from the senior execs, but events in 2011 paint a very different picture as to the future health of RIM.

“At the turn of the year there was confidence of a sales upturn and the positive impact that the introduction of RIM's first tablet, The PlayBook would have on RIM's fortunes.

Unsold PlayBooks are piling up in RIM's warehouses, and the company admitted it will have to slash prices to shift them. The dilemma that RIM face, that unlike HP they cannot simply "pull the plug" on the PlayBook, as the PlayBook operating system, QNX is being developed as the replacement of the current Operating System on their handheld devices and seen by RIM as the only effective way that they can close the gap on Android and Apple Operating Systems.

“The new Bold has received good reviews but is this going to be enough to stem the flow away from BlackBerry to other smartphone manufacturers and buy the company time to fully develop the QNX software on their handheld devices in order to compete with iOS and Android.

“An area of definite RIM success, certainly amongst the younger generation, BlackBerry Instant Messenger (BBM), went from being a success story to PR disaster after it was implicated and highlighted as a significant factor in the organisation of the recent riots in London.

“And now, just to top it all, we have had the server outages at BlackBerry that stopped millions across the globe from accessing their emails, internet and the much loved BBM. Not only did RIM suffer one outage on Monday, and more significantly, having told the World it was sorted, we have a second outage again on Tuesday....enough to turn even the most fervent "crackberry" running towards the open arms of the other smartphone manufacturers.

“It can be argued that RIM were complacent, in that their traditional market stronghold within Banking and Governmental sectors remained strong even until very recently...that was until the iPad took centre stage and suddenly banking executives joined the rest of the consumer world and wanted their own iPad. With these execs now being exposed to iOS and liking it we have seen an initial slow but significant move away from BlackBerry within their traditional strongholds. With the advent of Mobility Device Management solutions this migration will only speed up as IT departments bow to employees pressure to introduce more appealing smartphones offered by Apple and other manufacturers utilising Android.

“If I was Mr Lazaridis or Mr Balsillie this is the trend that would worry me most...the increasing move away from BlackBerry within their market heartland. Could 2012 see a greater BlackBerry outage or at even a terminal one?"

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