10-28-15 05:44 PM
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  1. Matt J's Avatar
    Hindsight is always 20/20... but I have going over what's happening with BlackBerry over and over in my head....

    Here are some facts:

    Mike Lazaridis was responsible for acquiring QNX that led to BB10.

    Mike Lazaridis didn't want to go over to all-touch devices. He said in a board meeting as he pointed to a BlackBerry with a keyboard. I get this, he said. Its clearly differentiated. Then he pointed to a touchscreen phone. I dont get this.

    The Passport was well under development when Heins took to reins (I have a friend that worked for BlackBerry at the time). Now, years later, the physical keyboards are back in the form of the Passport, Classic, Q10, Q5 and the new Priv.

    The PlayBook was actually a great tablet and the technology of Bridge (and now Blend) was all Mike's doing.

    Mike Lazaridis was all about security... then it disappeared for a while under Heins, and now Chen is back to security.

    It just seems, in retrospect, that maybe Magic Mike was ahead of his time... and if things played out differently and Lazaridis took the company private, things would have turned out different.

    Sure, maybe BlackBerry would be gone by now, but it seems that all the CORE technologies were developed under Mike's tenure. If Chen kills BB10 and replaces it with Android, the core technologies the company has is security (because of Mike), BES (again, Mike), the physical keyboard (Mike's favourite) and its relationship with corporations (Mike again).

    I see my Passport and I see Mike Lazaridis. His BB10, his keyboard, his security, his battery life, his design....

    He was a visionary that maybe should have continued in his role at BlackBerry... in some capacity.

    Sorry, being a little nostalgic.
    09-29-15 10:42 AM
  2. anon(8063781)'s Avatar
    I tend to agree. But, I would add that BlackBerry is still struggling with another legacy of the Lazaridis (and Balsillie) era: their shattered relationship with American carriers. Everyone (including me) complains about BlackBerry marketing, but carrier marketing is probably even more important.

    Who knows. Steve Jobs came back. Maybe one day Mike will too. He's only 54 and he's clearly a brilliant engineer.
    Matt J likes this.
    09-29-15 10:58 AM
  3. bhoqeem's Avatar
    If Mike's back, things will definitely get VERY interesting--especially if he does it without Balsillie in tow. But I'm not sure if it's feasible at this point.
    anon(8063781) likes this.
    09-29-15 11:04 AM
  4. Doggerz's Avatar
    He has emotion for Research in Motion. Even if he made mistakes and couldn't see that they needed to not only use QNX sooner but make it available to everyone and stop acting like they can't fail....

    They needed to make it easier for app developers to make apps 8 years ago. And come off friendlier and not like a bunch of assholes.

    If only we had a time machine maybe QNX OS would be right up there with iOS. But yeah he and anyone else is better than Chen. The PlayBook was beautiful solid hardware.

    Z30STA100-5 / 10.3.2.2639 / T-Mobile USA
    anon(8063781) likes this.
    09-29-15 11:06 AM
  5. Matt J's Avatar
    Who knows. Steve Jobs came back. Maybe one day Mike will too. He's only 54 and he's clearly a brilliant engineer.
    Maybe he's just waiting for the stock price to fall, and then buy it.
    anon(8063781) and sonicpix like this.
    09-29-15 11:08 AM
  6. Matt J's Avatar
    He has emotion for Research in Motion. Even if he made mistakes and couldn't see that they needed to not only use QNX sooner but make it available to everyone and stop acting like they can't fail....

    They needed to make it easier for app developers to make apps 8 years ago. And come off friendlier and not like a bunch of assholes.

    If only we had a time machine maybe QNX OS would be right up there with iOS. But yeah he and anyone else is better than Chen. The PlayBook was beautiful solid hardware.

    Z30STA100-5 / 10.3.2.2639 / T-Mobile USA
    The PlayBook was an incredible device when released. Bridge was excellent technology. The biggest mistake was not focussing on the app side of the business right away. With all that cash in the bank, they could have paid developers to make the most important apps.
    nt300 likes this.
    09-29-15 11:10 AM
  7. Troy Tiscareno's Avatar
    Mike is who built BB... but Mike is also who brought BB to its knees.

    Mike got tunnel-visioned, and once tunneled in, he couldn't see the rest of the world around him, and refused to accept the changes that were happening in the industry until it was WAY (YEARS!) too late - and in the ultra-fast-moving world of mobile, being DAYS late is enough to lose billions.

    Mike insisted on making all the decisions, and created a corporate culture where "Mike is Right" and no one would ever tell him otherwise. In the beginning, when Mike understood the problems of the day, he did very well (he's a very smart guy), but once he got tunneled in, he lost touch and, as the Brits say, "lost the plot."

    Mike should have had a new, advanced OS under way once the first rumors of Apple getting into the smartphone business started going around (2005). He absolutely should have been focusing a good portion of his workday on it when Apple gave a date for its introduction in 2007 (Apple wasn't a company that could be ignored, and that's doubly true if they're entering YOUR business). Even if those opportunities were squandered, there is absolutely ZERO excuse for Mike not having met with his staff on June 30, 2007 (the day after the iPhone official announcement) to create a new department to begin development of a new OS.

    Instead, Mike had lots of excuses about how the carriers wouldn't allow it and how it would never work. Mike is the same guy that told Verizon that they shouldn't bother with LTE, and to stay with 3G! He simply couldn't change, and had convinced himself that his solutions to 2002's mobile data problems were the only way forward in 2007. Needless to say he was completely unprepared to meet Verizon's demand for a phone that was competitive with the iPhone, and when the Storm was released, it was a colossal failure that caused massive damage to BB's reputation with the carriers - and Verizon especially, who lost a billion dollars on the Storm.

    It was Mike who pushed Android into Verizon's arms - prior to that, Android had been a boutique OS on the smallest US carrier at the time (T-Mobile). The Verizon relationship is what really launched Android.

    And how can anyone seriously say that the Playbook was a great product at launch? The Playbook was essentially a dumb screen extender for BBOS, sold at the price of a larger, full-fledged, independent tablet (iPad). Without a BBOS device, it was completely useless. The sales numbers tell that story - they couldn't move inventory without a firesale and a $1B writedown. Again, thanks to Mike's lack of vision.

    I totally appreciate Mike's focus on security and privacy (believe it or not), but in order to have any hope of success, he had to be in the game by 2009, or 2010 at the very latest, with a modern, advanced phone OS, which means he'd have had to start work on that OS in 2007. But by 2010, he was just buying an OS that was to be the foundation for his new smartphone OS - WAY too late to be relevant. When you move the 3-year development window over to 2010, you get a product launch on 2013, after the competition has had a 6-7 year head start. BB was already way out of the game when BB10 launched - thanks to Mike.

    Yes, BB10 is a great OS, but a great OS with no userbase and no ecosystem is a failed product. Many people correctly predicted the outcome back in 2010 (heck, Kevin wrote a story here in 2009 saying the same thing) - and urged BB to adopt Android then. Even with the security problems it might have had at the time, BB could have, by now, had 5 years of working (with Google and/or independently) to fix those problems, and they'd have been able to sell to consumers and enterprises alike without a massive investment in a failed platform, years of lost sales, etc. BB might well still be the king of business smartphones today.

    The very idea that Mike was "right all along" is delusional, and completely ignores the massive harm Mike did to the company he built.
    09-29-15 02:16 PM
  8. Troy Tiscareno's Avatar
    With all that cash in the bank, they could have paid developers to make the most important apps.
    Both BB and Microsoft have tried exactly that, and with relatively little success. Most developers are only interested in userbase size, and for good reason (that's what makes their own companies valuable).
    09-29-15 02:18 PM
  9. prplhze2000's Avatar
    Mike made the decision to use adobe air for playbook apps. Killed it from the start. He opposed expanding BBM. Think about that. Could've bben Whatsapp. He told Verizon not to go to 4G.

    Forget the ideas. No one disputes how smart or visionary he was at times. BlackBerry double flunked execution and meeting deadlines. All the great ideas are no good if you can't execute.

    And he tried to hold on to OS7 Waaaaaay too long. He completely missed how the market was changing.

    Posted via CB10
    bp2k7 likes this.
    09-29-15 06:04 PM
  10. bobby1966's Avatar
    BlackBerry should have went Android in 2010.

    Via my Z30 on the Telus network
    paulbbp likes this.
    09-29-15 06:26 PM
  11. prplhze2000's Avatar
    Playbook was incredible? Hahahaha

    No email. No apps. No calendar. Only one gb of ram. Slow browser. Hardware itself was good but please. It was overpriced and offered little.



    Posted via CB10
    Tabdus likes this.
    09-29-15 07:53 PM
  12. Technarch's Avatar
    I remember when the PlayBook was introduced. Everyone was all "what do you mean there is no email client?". Keep in mind it was released before webmail was common so if you didn't have an email app on your tablet then off to your computer you go. It's part of why I never got one.

    Then later, they were all "Damn, we left out the 1 feature people wanted.". Then they decided after the fact that you would use email through your phone instead. The requirement of course was that it couldn't be any phone, it had to be a BlackBerry. This was introduced after what seemed like a year maybe longer, I don't know. But the whole time everyone else could email on everything just not the PlayBook.

    People were already replacing their BBOS devices with iPhones. I was one of them and still use the 4S every day 4 years later. I certainly wasn't going to buy another BBOS device to use a tablet that had no apps.

    Mike and Jim were smart and had lots of good ideas. They also had lots of bad ideas and nobody to say no to them.

    Posted via CB10
    09-29-15 08:30 PM
  13. papped's Avatar
    Playbook was incredible? Hahahaha
    No email. No apps. No calendar. Only one gb of ram. Slow browser. Hardware itself was good but please. It was overpriced and offered little.
    Posted via CB10
    What, you don't like $700 tablets that crash when you look at it and have little to no features most consumers want and boast flash development, then remove it entirely?
    09-29-15 08:47 PM
  14. keithhackneysmullet's Avatar
    Mike made the decision to use adobe air for playbook apps. Killed it from the start. He opposed expanding BBM. Think about that. Could've bben Whatsapp. He told Verizon not to go to 4G.

    Forget the ideas. No one disputes how smart or visionary he was at times. BlackBerry double flunked execution and meeting deadlines. All the great ideas are no good if you can't execute.

    And he tried to hold on to OS7 Waaaaaay too long. He completely missed how the market was changing.

    Posted via CB10
    Mike didn't make a decision to use Adobe Air. QNX did. All of their car stuff was written using Air

    Posted via CB10
    09-29-15 09:11 PM
  15. anon(8063781)'s Avatar
    I remember when the PlayBook was introduced. Everyone was all "what do you mean there is no email client?". Keep in mind it was released before webmail was common so if you didn't have an email app on your tablet then off to your computer you go. It's part of why I never got one.
    This point is definitely incorrect.
    Supa_Fly1 likes this.
    09-29-15 09:19 PM
  16. KarateHottie93's Avatar
    I tend to agree. But, I would add that BlackBerry is still struggling with another legacy of the Lazaridis (and Balsillie) era: their shattered relationship with American carriers. Everyone (including me) complains about BlackBerry marketing, but carrier marketing is probably even more important.

    Who knows. Steve Jobs came back. Maybe one day Mike will too. He's only 54 and he's clearly a brilliant engineer.
    When you say Steve Jobs, do you mean the PR guy that guys all the unwarranted credit?
    09-29-15 09:31 PM
  17. anon(8063781)'s Avatar
    When you say Steve Jobs, do you mean the PR guy that guys all the unwarranted credit?
    I think that's unfair and dismissive of an exceptionally talented and effective corporate leader. I've never been an apple fan, but from what I've read, while Jobs might not have been a technical wizard like Woz or Lazaridis, he coordinated the design of a great number of apple products AND served as an exceptional spokesman. That's nothing to dismiss out of hand.
    Fidel Mercado and bp2k7 like this.
    09-29-15 09:39 PM
  18. KarateHottie93's Avatar
    I think that's unfair and dismissive of an exceptionally talented and effective corporate leader. I've never been an apple fan, but from what I've read, while Jobs might not have been a technical wizard like Woz or Lazaridis, he coordinated the design of a great number of apple products AND served as an exceptional spokesman. That's nothing to dismiss out of hand.
    Eh, credit stealing PR guy to me but it's debatable. There are too many opinions on the subject...all valid in their own right I guess.
    09-29-15 09:46 PM
  19. anon(8063781)'s Avatar
    All valid if supported by evidence.
    paulbbp likes this.
    09-29-15 10:35 PM
  20. Maxxxpower's Avatar
    Many people correctly predicted the outcome back in 2010 (heck, Kevin wrote a story here in 2009 saying the same thing) - and urged BB to adopt Android then.
    Any details on this article or even a link? Would be very interesting to re-read it.
    09-30-15 03:05 AM
  21. keithhackneysmullet's Avatar
    Mike Lazaridies was a genius. I prefer his vision of a secure communication device over the media consumer that phones have turned in to.

    Posted via CB10
    09-30-15 06:54 AM
  22. DrBoomBotz's Avatar
    When your stock is at its highest you are always thinking how can I make it higher.
    Whatever I do I have to make the price go up and that can mean ignoring reality.

    When your share price is half what it was 12 months previous you are thinking I have to get it back to where it was and that can really encourage one to ignore reality.

    A CEO telling investors about a reality where there investments will be worth less than they used to be and possibly less than the investor paid for them does not go over very well at all.

    People play different when they have something to lose and they tend to make the worst choices when trying to win something back.
    09-30-15 02:26 PM
  23. Troy Tiscareno's Avatar
    Any details on this article or even a link? Would be very interesting to re-read it.
    10 Reasons why Google will buy BlackBerry | CrackBerry.com

    There's another one that I couldn't find, but this one is good also.
    09-30-15 04:39 PM
  24. imz's Avatar
    How much is he worth, he's still giving away millions apparently.

    He could of had it right or wrong but the his bank account is still winning.

    Posted via CB10
    09-30-15 05:00 PM
  25. Prem WatsApp's Avatar
    Mike didn't see the threat when he realized "they put a Mac computer in there" ... :-)

      Forget the name, ... Priv it on! :-)  
    09-30-15 08:30 PM
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