BlackBerry chief exec Thorsten Heins has asked investors for patience while the company-formerly-known-as-RIM tries to figure out how to make money again. Heins said that he was open to any options that might give shareholders some return from their investment, including licensing deals or even selling off the firm, Reuters, the …
improvements ... necessary to build ... a strong company for the long term
But were there any details as to what those improvements are? It's all very well saying that, but is there anything to back it up? This time last year, I'm sure those "improvements" would have had at the top of the list BB10, the Z10, the Q10 and the Q5. So now those are crossed off the list and haven't helped, what's next?
Re: improvements ... necessary to build ... a strong company for the long term
Heins reminds me of Major General John Sedgewick at the battle of Battle of Spotsylvania Court House 1864 who said the infamous words:
'I'm ashamed of you dodging that way. They couldn't hit an elephant at this dist..........'
I am perplexed that Heins cannot see the wood from the trees.
...good one :D
There is a blinds company in Wandsworth whose slogan used to be "Deanz Meanz Blindz"...
They're cutting costs by ditching BB10 for the playbook. Releasing a new BB7 device to keep those who can't afford premium devices interested. Expanding the range of BB10 devices. BB has been targeted by some aggressive short sellers and thy're the ones throwning a lot of the punches.
They could always open up BBM, I suppose.
They'd lose in terms of exclusive device sales but those seem to be down the shitter anyway. And they might win in terms of service provision.
Amazing how many die hard BB fans railed them for not supporting the old playbook any further. So few actually sold as anything but novelty gifts and the cost of development is not small, of course they're axing the project when this current slide looks like it'll last longer than hoped.
They are opening up BBM.
It will arrive for Android and iPhone later this year. Along with additional features.
The playbook is a good tablet. I hope that they do continue to support it even if it isn't going to get BB10.
The OS seems fine, it's the phones that are the problem. Just way behind the curve, lousy camera, "okay" hardware (not good just average).
Nokia has shown clearly the hardware is more important than the OS. (some) People will put up with a somewhat dog shit OS if their phone looks slick.
Not sure about the camera bit. I recall a recent incident at a concert where a slew of friends with iPhones and other shinyshiny couldn't get a single decent picture out of the very dark venue, meanwhile someone whipped out his work Z10 and was getting great photo after great photo. Anecdotal, sure, but certainly its lowlight blows away most camera phones.
Hard to dispute that the other hardware is fairly 'meh'. BB's hardware release cycle is designed with business in mind, they do so much qualification testing, if they want to target consumers they need to slap the newest chipset behind the biggest screen as fast as they can order them from suppliers. Sad but true.
Long term for the company looks bleak but they were smart enough in good times to stash several billion in the bank which they still have so short term they look to be alright. BB also has more money shorted against it than any major firm I believe ever (over a third). Short sellers aren't usually patient over the long term so the stock may see a pretty big bump if it can do anything right.
smart enough in good times to stash several billion in the bank
Excess cash in a company destroys shareholder value. Miller and Modigliani proved that back in the 1960s. In calling for patience this Heins guy seems to be attempting to feather his own nest. On the whole, investors aren't stupid. They have serious concerns about his strategy (or lack of progress thereon) and his words will only serve to incense them.
Re: smart enough in good times to stash several billion in the bank
Any economics "proof" from the 1960s needs to be reviewed. If your problem is that you expect unavoidable future costs like product launches, or you are releasing a new product with the usual upfront cash sink, and you cannot borrow economically because the "market" has written you off, then a cash float to fund those costs may be the difference between failure and survival.
Some years ago I worked for a company that wanted to enter the US market. The bank wanted extortionate rates, the site couldn't be mortgaged because there was, at that time, a panic about pollution on older sites (that eventually disappeared), but fortunately there was just enough cash from operations to get over the initial hurdles. A couple of years later that same bank was trying to lend us money, but by then we knew that the first letter of "banker" is pronounced w.
All laws of economics are fixed until they turn out to be bovine excrement, when suddenly everybody knew that all along.
The only way BB is going to make money is...
...if they PRINT it.
I switched to BB10 a couple of months back...
... and it's "not bad".
The trouble is not bad isn't good enough - the device feels and operates in quite a clunky way. The experience is similar to Droid a couple of years back or IOS at launch and both of those have moved on at pace since then while BB has been ponding and trying to hit a moving target.
As I say, they've done an OK job but no more. It feels like the OS needs a couple of years to develop, but in that time iOS and Android will have moved on further and I just can't see any USP for the OS.
RIM really need to be bought out for their secure IP or by a big player who doesn't want to be tied to Droid.
Re: I switched to BB10 a couple of months back...
Clunky? Compared to Android?
Are you sure you've been testing BB 10 and not BB 7?
Can't we avoid lousy journalism eg repeating false claims?
"The company's supposed saviour, the shiny new BlackBerry 10 OS, has failed to dazzle the mobile market, with devices carrying the system not selling as well as the firm had hoped in the first full quarter on the market."
I'm not aware of any hope-reporting feed... they shipped 2.7M new BB10 devices in a quarter where they only had a single, admittedly mid-tier premium model (Z10) available (Q10 debuted in June, practically didn't make a dent on their sheets.)
They had to fight for market share while high-end premium phones like Samsung's S4, HTC's One were introduced with immediate availability, not to mention widespread expectations of an updated iPhone arriving at WWDC (5S, turned out to be false.)
Despite all this BB actually managed to GROW by 30% in the US, where its devices got little provider backing, Q10 arrived late etc...
...just how TF would that translate to 'failed to dazzle the market', seriously?
"Without a boost from BB10 and with another operating loss forecast for the current quarter, BlackBerry's shares have dropped another 30 per cent since it reported a surprise second quarter loss in June."
Aye... aside of copy/pasting from other articles you didn't bother to check actual numbers, dear, did you?
FYI OVER 40% of the float IS SHORTED - don't you think that has something to do with the constant flow of negative rumors, negative press, negative-toned, badly researched articles (eg this one above), hmm, dear?
Disclaimer: I have no position WRT BB, never owned any of their devices, just recently tested a Z10 for 2 weeks and was impressed by its unified communication features and future possibilities of BB10 (but sorely disappointed by its current Android app support compatibility/quality, unfinished features and lack of a high-end model with 1080p, 5" screen etc etc.)
Re: Can't we avoid lousy journalism eg repeating false claims?
RIM became a playground for speculators. There are a lot of people who want them to fail, and there's a huge whispering campaign against them in the US. Is it surprising that the US market went pear shaped?
Re: Can't we avoid lousy journalism eg repeating false claims?
Definitely a good example of the difference in market impact between speculator and investor.
BB10 has technical features the other OS don't come close to matching. Can you run BB10 on an Android for example? And yet BB10 can run multiple Android instances at the same time.
The problem for BlackBerry is most consumers wouldn't know secure communications if it bit them, and multi-tasking isn't a term that means much to your average game player. Except that even with "crappy" hardware on BB games still run as well or better than on Quad core devices. After all, what is the point of quad core if your OS can't handle the multiple cores.
So until we all make payments with our phones or run our homes with our phones no one will notice. And by then maybe Samsung and Apple will have caught up. Tizen at least looks promising.
Sadly for BlackBerry, just because their OS is technically superior doesn't mean the market is going to buy. Though in time you never know.
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