1. Marc_Paradise's Avatar
    I'm not trying to pile onto a bad week here, but this is something that's been growing in my mind over the last several months.


    Apps - and the mindshare implied that comes with automatic support of your platform by app makers. And I'm not talking about the big name apps - it's the rest of them that I begin to realize are costing BBRY:

    • Turn on the TV. Watch commercials. Two things to notice. 1) Many commercials end with an indication that an app is availalable for Android and iPhone. 2) Virtually none indicate an app available for BB, *even those that have supported BB apps*
    • Walk into your favorite stores and hangouts. See QR codes posted for 4square along with icons that show it's supported on your Android and Apple devices - but no icon for BlackBerry even though it's a fully supported native BBRY app. Not just 4square either: pretty much any location-based app that uses in-store placement to get attention, and in many cases custom apps for the stores themselves.
    • Take a look at the startup scene. BlackBerry development is literally not a consideration, even now. Look at HackerNews, etc - lots of talk about mobile. Zero talk about BlackBerry. It is, for all intents and purposes, a platform that doesn't exist for people doing new development - even more so than Windows 8. There is a gaping void around BB in the context of any mobile app discussions - again, it literally doesn't enter into consideration.


    The first two items above are sending out statements: BB isn't even a concern worth mentioning in our advertising. It's not a malicious thing that they're doing - they're just advertising that they support hte major active platforms, which is what people want to know about. But the empty space where the BB icon isn't... that has a major influence when it's decision time for customers. They also make an assumption that says BB isn't a concern, or worth considering in their purchase decisions. This isn't even "oh, BB sucks I don't want them" - it's more pervasive than that, because BB isn't getting consideration in the first place.

    To summarize: there is a pervasive behavior: nobody outside of the phone-fans are talking about BBRY at all. In spite of all the BBRY has tried to do, this remains true. They're essentially ignored.

    I'm not sure this is something that can be fixed if all that BBRY has done so far has not already fixed it. And if not, BBRY should probably do what they strongly hinted they were doing 18 months ago: focusing on the enterprise space to become a niche player in devices, and first choice for MDM. There's a lot of room for really good profitability profitability there, at a potentially much lower cost.

    This does discount their role in 'internet of things' - while I'd love to see that come to fruition, so far we've only seen a couple of hints while being told they're 100% focused on getting the phone line rolled out. I'll be happy to be wrong, but I think that (even w/ QNX technical underpinnings) this is a good but somewhat vague vision that is in its very early stages of actual development - and that BBRY might not have the years it will require to bring such a vision to pass.
    Last edited by Marc_Paradise; 07-08-13 at 11:45 AM.
    07-01-13 05:50 PM
  2. Marc_Paradise's Avatar
    Additional comment:

    I do think BB10 is one of the best platforms out there. I just think that the biggest problem BBRY faces is getting people to notice it and getting back that critical mindshare that allows it be taken into consideration when people are making their purchasing decisions.

    We can't look to past BlackBerry users for any significant number of sales*- collectively, there simply aren't enough former blackberry users to create sustainable demand in the context of today's larger market, so I'm also not putting much hope in the missing Q10 sales for this quarter. (If you recall, we were also saying 'wait until Q1 results because then we'll have a full quarter of Z10 sales').

    * And they *are* the majority of the target for Q10: people who have never had a keyboard phone don't miss having a keyboard phone and consider sub-par virtual keyboards as normal and usable.

    Ah well. Maybe I'm just overly frustrated, but I like to think I've raised legitimate concerns. I'm sure y'all will let me know if I haven't
    07-01-13 06:06 PM
  3. Marc_Paradise's Avatar
    Underscoring the real problem here -

    I went to the local UPS store today to ship my BB LE device (hardware failure - replacing under warranty).

    The cashier took the phone to get a suitable box for it and said, "Wow. I didn't know that BlackBerry was making phones that looked this good."

    I give a brief spiel about it, but he had me tuned out right after my first sentence which was, "yeah, bb has a new line of really good phones out now" - because as I've probably overstated, BB is not even under consideration as an option for him and millions like him.

    These are the people BB is failing to convert, and they are the ones that are most needed (for N.A. success, at least).

    In other news, my local water company is no longer supporting BB as of the end of this year - they used to be an all BB shop, but the current generation of IT folks doesn't want to support it. They're issuing iPhones now. To those saying "well, they'll realize their mistake the first time a security breach happens", I say "wake up". Someone probably will say "hey, this never happened when we had BB" - to which the response will NOT be "oh gosh! let's switch everyone back to BB and recall all those thousands of corporate-issued iphones!"

    Security breaches are a part of technological life these days - and they drive new policy, not mass returns to platforms that aren't considered viable anymore.

    Alright, alright. I'll stop going on about it now. It's just now that I've begun seeing without the rose-colored glasses, the situation is becoming more and more clear, and it really isn't looking good.
    ccbs likes this.
    07-08-13 11:44 AM
  4. Sith_Apprentice's Avatar
    You have made actually many good points in this. I have said multiple times the same thing about security. It is great to have, but you cannot rely on it actually changing anything. It may make a difference the tech refresh AFTER a security breach, but wont help you in the short term. Those refreshes can be every 24-36 months for IT equipment.
    07-08-13 11:48 AM
  5. ccbs's Avatar
    Thoughtful view, especially being mindful of those new and upcoming start-up titles that will likely drive the next gen apps.
    For most smartphone users outside of this forum, Netflix, Instagram or Google apps are just base line requirement to even be considered a mobile platform. The real differentiation comes from those new and creative titles that pop-ups frequently. iOS is definitely very much ahead of even Android due to their maturity of supported API. Android is catching up quickly and their API has been improving a lot.
    07-08-13 03:06 PM
  6. timmy t's Avatar
    Blackberry has to start developing cool apps for these types of things and then go to various places and see if they can get them to used them.
    They have to take a bunch of shots at apps and hope that a couple catch on.

    I would like to be able to go to a bar and order a beer through my smartphone and have it delivered to me. I would like to then be able to pay for it through some form of electronic wallet transaction or BBMMoney or whatever it is called.
    BB should develop an app like that and then go and try to get bars to use it, for free, in hopes that it will catch on.
    They have to try a lot of various things. Not all of them will catch on but if one or two do, it could be a trend setter.
    How much would something like that cost to develop and lend out a smartphone to a bar?
    07-08-13 04:27 PM
  7. sosumi11's Avatar
    BB should develop an app like that and then go and try to get bars to use it, for free, in hopes that it will catch on.
    Very few (if any) retailers will shake up their payment system just to try it out. What you are suggesting is something similar to what Apple's John Sculley tried to do with his "Test Drive a Mac" campaign. The problem with such programs is that retailers (or customers) will take advantage of such offers, without ever committing to purchase. The Test Drive a Mac campaign yielded very little sales and Apple had a bunch of used Macs that they couldn't resell.

    Test driving an ecosystem where an ecosystem doesn't exist is not going to help BlackBerry. The only way BlackBerry can save themselves is by expanding out of the handset business and realize that they are making computers now.

    They have to build their own ecosystem and not just sit around and expect developers to do it for them. And killing their only non-handset device (PlayBook) is not a good sign.
    07-09-13 04:42 PM
  8. Nindia's Avatar
    I find it hilariously ******** that BlackBerry hasn't just knocked on the doors of instagram and snapchat (among others that are popular amongst teenagers) and just paid them to develop their apps for them.

    They exist on android, so even official ports would be great.

    I can't keep count of how many people said they would've given bb10 a try if it wasn't for just the lack of ONE app: Instagram.

    BlackBerry has their head stuck in the sand. It's the average consumer that has been paying their bills over the last few years, not enterprise clients. And they're losing that marketshare at an alarming rate.

    The management is the same old s#!t with a different polish on it.
    07-09-13 05:23 PM
  9. sosumi11's Avatar
    I find it hilariously ******** that BlackBerry hasn't just knocked on the doors of instagram and snapchat (among others that are popular amongst teenagers) and just paid them to develop their apps for them.

    They exist on android, so even official ports would be great.

    I can't keep count of how many people said they would've given bb10 a try if it wasn't for just the lack of ONE app: Instagram.
    One app an ecosystem does not make.

    It's not just the apps. It's the whole package. People bought Windows because Microsoft turned the PC industry into a commodity. They were reeling in the big bucks while the hardware people were racing to who can afford the lowest margin. The same thing is happening to Android hardware makers. Except the developers are not making money on the software as they did on Windows. Google pushes free, ad-embedded apps over paid, ad-free apps. The flaw here is that cheap people don't open their wallets.

    BlackBerry has to re-invent themselves and that means by not making a "me too" handset running a "me too" operating system. Apple did it by entering markets that no one thought was breakable.

    Until BlackBerry's management understands this they are on the path of becoming just a paragraph in the annals of phone history as the CrackBerry Fad.

    A silly example would be a BlackBerry Coffee Maker that allows you to have your coffee waiting for you after you ordered it from your desk would be a pretty cool piece of "office equipment." But then again, who even works out of an office nowadays?
    07-09-13 06:03 PM

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