06-03-16 10:03 AM
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  1. IJKBB10's Avatar
    If you read Losing The Signal, you'll find that Mike really was never focused on - or really cared about - the consumer market. Mike believed that saving carrier bandwidth and solving the 2G networking speed issue were the most important things. He created excellent solutions for those issues at the time, but once he did, he simply did not want to move forward. He fought against the carriers moving to 3G (he talked at least one into deploying "2.5G") and he advised Verizon against LTE (or any 4G). He remained convinced that smartphones were a corporate device, rather than a consumer device, and he convinced himself that the carriers would never allow Apple to offer full web browsing because of the data usage - he simply didn't believe that the carriers would invest in their own networks to meet the demand.

    In so many ways, Mike had his head in the sand, and even when it was clear that he'd made the wrong call, he stuck to his views and used BB's reputation and inertia (because for a couple of years, BB continued to grow - though mostly due to it expanding into emerging markets with low-end consumer devices) as Apple and Google blew past BB in technology and soon in marketshare. The reason BB didn't even start to work on a modern OS until 2010 is because Mike was virtually forced to do so, and could only hold back the tide that long.

    For all of Mike's brilliance in solving the problems of the early 2000s, Mike couldn't handle the constantly moving targets of the smartphone industry and spent his efforts trying to convince key players to slow down and stick with the old solutions instead of moving ahead. That is why BB is where it is today. The biggest and most important growth years for the smartphone business were 2009-2011 - that's where the bulk of the growth was, and that's when the winners were crowned by both consumers and developers. BB sat those years out for the most part, and by the time they tried to get back in the game, the game had long been finished and trophies awarded.

    As much as people here whine about Thor or Chen, it is Mike Lazaridis who they should be focusing their ire on, because, though he built the original tech that made people fall in love with BB, he also is the one who, over and over and over again, shot BB in the foot and let the competition fly by without doing a thing to even try to compete.
    Wow, very well said again! Totally agree with you!

    I still believe BlackBerry could have done a bit better in selling more z10's, q10's and z30's if they had not priced them so high from the get go and done better marketing of informing ppl the new phones are running a new OS and showed off the new features much better!

    Posted via CB10
    05-30-16 06:18 PM
  2. Bbnivende's Avatar
    If you read Losing The Signal, you'll find that Mike really was never focused on - or really cared about - the consumer market. Mike believed that saving carrier bandwidth and solving the 2G networking speed issue were the most important things. He created excellent solutions for those issues at the time, but once he did, he simply did not want to move forward. He fought against the carriers moving to 3G (he talked at least one into deploying "2.5G") and he advised Verizon against LTE (or any 4G). He remained convinced that smartphones were a corporate device, rather than a consumer device, and he convinced himself that the carriers would never allow Apple to offer full web browsing because of the data usage - he simply didn't believe that the carriers would invest in their own networks to meet the demand.

    In so many ways, Mike had his head in the sand, and even when it was clear that he'd made the wrong call, he stuck to his views and used BB's reputation and inertia (because for a couple of years, BB continued to grow - though mostly due to it expanding into emerging markets with low-end consumer devices) as Apple and Google blew past BB in technology and soon in marketshare. The reason BB didn't even start to work on a modern OS until 2010 is because Mike was virtually forced to do so, and could only hold back the tide that long.

    For all of Mike's brilliance in solving the problems of the early 2000s, Mike couldn't handle the constantly moving targets of the smartphone industry and spent his efforts trying to convince key players to slow down and stick with the old solutions instead of moving ahead. That is why BB is where it is today. The biggest and most important growth years for the smartphone business were 2009-2011 - that's where the bulk of the growth was, and that's when the winners were crowned by both consumers and developers. BB sat those years out for the most part, and by the time they tried to get back in the game, the game had long been finished and trophies awarded.

    As much as people here whine about Thor or Chen, it is Mike Lazaridis who they should be focusing their ire on, because, though he built the original tech that made people fall in love with BB, he also is the one who, over and over and over again, shot BB in the foot and let the competition fly by without doing a thing to even try to compete.
    Excellent summary of past mistakes but what should BlackBerry do now to make handsets that will not lose money?



    Posted via CB10
    05-30-16 07:30 PM
  3. early2bed's Avatar
    Excellent summary of past mistakes but what should BlackBerry do now to make handsets that will not lose money?
    Get one of those Chinese mid-range Android manufacturer to make a BlackBerry version of their handsets and sell it to enterprise customers as a "hardened" Android phone. Shutdown all hardware operations and sell the patents.
    05-30-16 07:54 PM
  4. Troy Tiscareno's Avatar
    Excellent summary of past mistakes but what should BlackBerry do now to make handsets that will not lose money?
    That ship has sailed. The main growth period is over, and they missed it completely. And now their scale is so small that they simply can't compete - their costs, even with Android, are too high, they are targeting the most expensive segments of the market, and they've built a horrible brand image for themselves. Short of someone investing $20B into BB and encouraging them to spend every penny on marketing their Android phones (along with some R&D), BB is out of the game. They had their chance - in fact, they were in an excellent position to dominate, but they blew it completely, again and again and again. It's normal not to be able to recover from that.
    Dunt Dunt Dunt and JeepBB like this.
    05-30-16 09:59 PM
  5. z10Jobe's Avatar
    Of course their costs are higher. It's a company with Canadian operating costs that keeps most of its production in North America. Even mighty rich Apple or microsoft won't build their phones domestically. In the race to the bottom, those that take most advantage of the poor workers in the lowest cost regions win. Yay Apple! Yay Samsung! Keep them shareholders content.

    Not clicked from a Classic!

    Posted via CB10
    05-30-16 10:16 PM
  6. Jack Chin's Avatar
    Excellent summary of past mistakes but what should BlackBerry do now to make handsets that will not lose money?

    Posted via CB10
    Likely, BB's only winning move in hardware is not to play.

    Posted via CB10
    JeepBB likes this.
    05-30-16 11:36 PM
  7. Jack Chin's Avatar
    Of course their costs are higher. It's a company with Canadian operating costs that keeps most of its production in North America. Even mighty rich Apple or microsoft won't build their phones domestically. In the race to the bottom, those that take most advantage of the poor workers in the lowest cost regions win. Yay Apple! Yay Samsung! Keep them shareholders content.

    Not clicked from a Classic!

    Posted via CB10
    They aren't being 'taken advantage of'.

    Industrial investment raises the standard of living in those societies, invariably, and it isn't close. It's ironic that you cite a South Korean firm as some sort of bad faith actor. South Koreans would be living in hopeless squalor with your outlook, like they still do in the Stone Age, "workers' paradise" of North Korea.

    Blackberry's management hasn't been nationalistic. It's been incompetent.
    TgeekB and JeepBB like this.
    05-30-16 11:49 PM
  8. z10Jobe's Avatar
    They aren't being 'taken advantage of'.

    Industrial investment raises the standard of living in those societies, invariably, and it isn't close. It's ironic that you cite a South Korean firm as some sort of bad guy. South Koreans would be living in hopeless squalor with your outlook, like they still do in the Stone Age, "workers' paradise" of North Korea.

    Blackberry's management hasn't been nationalistic. It's been incompetent.
    I said Yay Samsung not Boo Samsung. Scheesh. Yay for selflessly investing in the future of their Chinese workers which are better off than their North Korean counterparts. What a lofty benchmark you set. I'm feeling really warm and fuzzy now and might get an edge s7 by the end of the week before it is replaced by the edge s8 so I can have the latest and greatest.

    You are correct. I should have used the term 'exploited' not 'taken advantage of'. I apologize.

    Actually Jim and Mike have done a lot of great things here in Ontario Canada outside of BlackBerry and continue to do so, but that probably isn't of interest to you.

    Posted via CB10
    05-31-16 12:06 AM
  9. Bbnivende's Avatar
    That ship has sailed. The main growth period is over, and they missed it completely. And now their scale is so small that they simply can't compete - their costs, even with Android, are too high, they are targeting the most expensive segments of the market, and they've built a horrible brand image for themselves. Short of someone investing $20B into BB and encouraging them to spend every penny on marketing their Android phones (along with some R&D), BB is out of the game. They had their chance - in fact, they were in an excellent position to dominate, but they blew it completely, again and again and again. It's normal not to be able to recover from that.
    It looks like they will use partnerships with other OEMs to help reduce their costs further. Their goals are rather modest at 5 million units a year. The PRIV was a kick in the pants as they continue to erode carrier relationships. They need to get to the Nexus / Apple model of OTA operating systems updates.
    05-31-16 10:05 AM
  10. donnation's Avatar
    Of course their costs are higher. It's a company with Canadian operating costs that keeps most of its production in North America. Even mighty rich Apple or microsoft won't build their phones domestically. In the race to the bottom, those that take most advantage of the poor workers in the lowest cost regions win. Yay Apple! Yay Samsung! Keep them shareholders content.

    Not clicked from a Classic!

    Posted via CB10
    Let's not kid ourselves and make Blackberry out to be some altruistic company helping the working man. They manufacture in Mexico and Indonesia and have partnered with Foxconn on phones. It's not like they are keeping production in house in Canada or in the US. Apple and Samsung are no better but let's not canonize Blackberry as something they aren't.
    05-31-16 11:16 AM
  11. z10Jobe's Avatar
    Well if ya followed the posts, you would see that I was responding to and giving additional reasons why BlackBerry has higher development and production costs, (Canada and Mexico more expensive than China) and also did mention the Classic as being the exception long after the profits were gone and long after other companies had already done so.

    I don't recall proclaiming BlackBerry as saints, but nice extrapolation. BlackBerry used to build some phones here in Ontario, but that is no longer feasible given costs and their financial predicament.

    Celebrating huge profits and a mountain of cash while workers get paid chicken feed and having to live at their workplace is not something I would associate as being a good thing, but some on here have no problem with it, although I doubt that it is something most of us would want to do for a living.

    Just my 2 cents.




    Posted via CB10
    05-31-16 12:48 PM
  12. donnation's Avatar
    Well if ya followed the posts, you would see that I was responding to and giving additional reasons why BlackBerry has higher development and production costs, (Canada and Mexico more expensive than China) and also did mention the Classic as being the exception long after the profits were gone and long after other companies had already done so.

    I don't recall proclaiming BlackBerry as saints, but nice extrapolation. BlackBerry used to build some phones here in Ontario, but that is no longer feasible given costs and their financial predicament.

    Celebrating huge profits and a mountain of cash while workers get paid chicken feed and having to live at their workplace is not something I would associate as being a good thing, but some on here have no problem with it, although I doubt that it is something most of us would want to do for a living.

    Just my 2 cents.




    Posted via CB10
    I wasn't extrapolating anything. You did fail to mention in any of your previous posts in here that the Classic AND the Z3 were built by Foxconn, but as you mentioned above I guess it's ok because times are tight and because other companies do it. My point is calling out Samsung and Apple is also calling out Blackberry. Blackberry has had devices made there and if they would have been successful you can bet they'd continue to have them made there.

    I haven't seen a press release from Blackberry discussing how they were appalled by the working conditions at Foxconn and decided to terminate their agreement. The only press I've seen on it is Chen saying the Classic is out of production because Blackberry doesn't want to pay more for an updated chip because the one they were using in the Classic is EOL.

    Edit: and you use a Classic so I guess you do approve of that type of labor.
    05-31-16 01:18 PM
  13. ljfong's Avatar
    The things that contributed to the Priv not selling:

    • High price vs the competition with similar hardware specs
    • The extremely negative brand image that BB has built for itself over the last several years (and continues to foster)
    • The idiotic name BB chose for the product ("Priv"). Someone needs to be slapped across the face for that.
    • The keyboard - the vast majority of users have no need for a PKB
    • Poor carrier relations due to years of BB releasing products that mainstream customers didn't want (causing carriers not to stock phones, display phones, or recommend phones from BB)
    • Did I mention that the phone was overpriced, because BB still seems to believe that they can command a premium even though their brand image is in the toilet?


    All other issues are extremely minor by comparison.
    Sounds about right as opposed to more ideologically driven analysis by OP.

    Apple becomes successful for being insightful in building what people want and they make generally high quality hardwares, their success has nothing to do with oft-repeated fanboyism or anything like that. BlackBerry has its share of fanboys too and that didn't help a bit.
    TgeekB likes this.
    05-31-16 03:13 PM
  14. Bbnivende's Avatar
    Sounds about right as opposed to more ideologically driven analysis by OP.

    Apple becomes successful for being insightful in building what people want and they make generally high quality hardwares, their success has nothing to do with oft-repeated fanboyism or anything like that. BlackBerry has its share of fanboys too and that didn't help a bit.
    What do " the people " want from BlackBerry? There is no consensus here on CB.
    aha likes this.
    05-31-16 03:18 PM
  15. ClassicKeyboardRules's Avatar
    People see my phone and " ask what kind of phone is that. Blackberry Classic...my wife loved her Blackberry. We both can't stand typing on glass." told him about Priv. He's going to look into it. I said people are complaining about price. "Why are they complaining... all the top phones their promoted are $600/$700 and got a keyboard " So people want these devices with keyboards regardless of operating system!

    Posted via CB10
    05-31-16 03:26 PM
  16. Deckard79's Avatar
    You could count the number of things BlackBerry got right with Priv on one... finger.

    Listing their obvious failures would take a long time, as there are simply so many.

    I'll get flamed (again) for saying this, but everything about Priv was an absolute car-crash waiting to happen. Half of us (pretty sure Bla1ze included) saw it a mile off.

    Posted via CB10
    JeepBB likes this.
    05-31-16 03:31 PM
  17. MikeX74's Avatar
    You want to know why the Priv hasn't done well? Here you go:
    1. Priced too damned high, especially in a world where good and great Android phones can be bought for less money.
    2. Aside from the PKB, it's just another Android phone.
    3. Aside from people who read tech blogs, people don't know that it(or the company that makes it) exists.

    No psychology necessary.
    JeepBB likes this.
    05-31-16 05:02 PM
  18. Bbnivende's Avatar
    Funny how all those "just another Android phone " manage to sell fine enough. The PKB is not viewed as an advantage by those who want a VKB . I do think that sum of the Rome and Hamburg would be greater than PRIV sales.
    blckberry4life likes this.
    05-31-16 05:16 PM
  19. MikeX74's Avatar
    Funny how all those "just another Android phone " manage to sell fine enough. The PKB is not viewed as an advantage by those who want a VKB . I do think that sum of the Rome and Hamburg would be greater than PRIV sales.
    Define "fine enough."
    05-31-16 05:43 PM
  20. Bbnivende's Avatar
    Fine enough to warrant a space at the table of working devices by major carriers .
    05-31-16 06:39 PM
  21. z10Jobe's Avatar
    I wasn't extrapolating anything. You did fail to mention in any of your previous posts in here that the Classic AND the Z3 were built by Foxconn, but as you mentioned above I guess it's ok because times are tight and because other companies do it. My point is calling out Samsung and Apple is also calling out Blackberry. Blackberry has had devices made there and if they would have been successful you can bet they'd continue to have them made there.

    I haven't seen a press release from Blackberry discussing how they were appalled by the working conditions at Foxconn and decided to terminate their agreement. The only press I've seen on it is Chen saying the Classic is out of production because Blackberry doesn't want to pay more for an updated chip because the one they were using in the Classic is EOL.

    Edit: and you use a Classic so I guess you do approve of that type of labor.
    Nice edit, but once again you are wrong. I have bought one of every non Porsche bb10 phone available in North America except the Classic which is why I specified post wasn't from a Classic. I guess that went over your head. I will be less subtle next time. BTW, unlike your iPhone owning self, no I don't approve of the labour practises but apparently you do by your statement of ownership equates to approval. The Z3 is for the Aisan market so naturally it should be produced in Asia.

    Why are asking about a BlackBerry press release? Nobody on here claims there was one. I don't know why you keep pulling imaginary BlackBerry things into the conversation.

    Posted via CB10
    05-31-16 07:14 PM
  22. donnation's Avatar
    Nice edit, but once again you are wrong. I have bought one of every non Porsche bb10 phone available in North America except the Classic which is why I specified post wasn't from a Classic. I guess that went over your head. I will be less subtle next time. BTW, unlike your iPhone owning self, no I don't approve of the labour practises but apparently you do by your statement of ownership equates to approval. The Z3 is for the Aisan market so naturally it should be produced in Asia.

    Why are asking about a BlackBerry press release? Nobody on here claims there was one. I don't know why you keep pulling imaginary BlackBerry things into the conversation.

    Posted via CB10
    Just stating that Blackberry does it too and they aren't exempt from the conversation if you want to go that route. That's all.
    TgeekB likes this.
    05-31-16 07:16 PM
  23. Troy Tiscareno's Avatar
    Even mighty rich Apple or microsoft won't build their phones domestically. In the race to the bottom, those that take most advantage of the poor workers in the lowest cost regions win.
    Which is a very 1st-World Guilt way of looking at things. You can also look at it this way: for many of those workers, building phones for Apple or Samsung or any big tech company is the best job in the region, and far better than their alternatives - which for a large number used to be subsistence farming on a tiny, crappy plot of land where they had to work all day to scrape out a living. An Apple or Samsung job pays them triple or more than what they could make otherwise, which is why there are 50 people lined up for every available job in those factories. It may seem "abusive" by first-world standards, but it's a huge improvement for them, and actually gives them upward mobility so that their future generations can live a more middle-class life.
    05-31-16 07:52 PM
  24. z10Jobe's Avatar
    Just stating that Blackberry does it too and they aren't exempt from the conversation if you want to go that route. That's all.
    I was providing another reason why BlackBerry costs are higher. That was the road I was going down till the side track.

    Okay.. lets do some simple math for you as we go down this route:

    1. % of phones produced by Foxconn prior to 2014:
    - Apple 100%
    - BlackBerry 0%

    2. % of phones produced by Foxconn currently:
    - Apple 100%
    - BlackBerry 0% unless Z3 is still being built

    3. % of phones produced by Foxxconn over their history:
    - Apple 100%
    - BlackBerry probably less than 4%

    If you think those numbers are equivalent, I may suggest you go back and take a math refresher course.

    Gotta go outside as the lawn is calling for a trim.

    Nice talking to you.



    Posted via CB10
    05-31-16 08:01 PM
  25. z10Jobe's Avatar
    Which is a very 1st-World Guilt way of looking at things. You can also look at it this way: for many of those workers, building phones for Apple or Samsung or any big tech company is the best job in the region, and far better than their alternatives - which for a large number used to be subsistence farming on a tiny, crappy plot of land where they had to work all day to scrape out a living. An Apple or Samsung job pays them triple or more than what they could make otherwise, which is why there are 50 people lined up for every available job in those factories. It may seem "abusive" by first-world standards, but it's a huge improvement for them, and actually gives them upward mobility so that their future generations can live a more middle-class life.
    I don't disagree with what you are saying Troy. It's just that companies with a mountain of cash can do a little bit better than what they do for their front line workers without having a significant impact on their bottom line.

    I don't think that anybody would disagree that things are overall better now in the western world now than at the dawn of the industrial revolution where working conditions were crap.

    Posted via CB10
    05-31-16 08:11 PM
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