03-30-12 05:34 AM
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  1. ubizmo's Avatar
    7. RIM needs to bring Microsoft Office to the Playbook (and future BB10 devices). Docs to go was a nice stop gap, but its garbage overall.
    Unfortunately, MS now has very good reason not to support this, since they are in direct competition with RIM with their WP7 platform, which does have Office baked in. A W8 tablet is coming.

    This is a problem, I think. WP has Office integrated with SkyDrive; Android has Google Docs integrated with its own cloud services. Apple has iCloud. RIM has no cloud app suite. This is a "tool" kind of a thing and it's where the industry has been headed for a while now. Once again, RIM needs to catch up. Maybe they could get Zoho to develop something.
    03-08-12 10:08 AM
  2. Sith_Apprentice's Avatar
    RIM does need their cloud offering released. They have one in the works, just needs to make it to market. MS is releasing office on the iPad, why not the Playbook? If people pay for the application then its just software to them (similar to how it works on MAC). I would gladly pay $9.99 for the FULL office suite on the Playbook.
    03-08-12 10:13 AM
  3. Laura Knotek's Avatar
    There are key apps that are important to consumers, it doesnt have to be 500k apps. But if we are talking high profile applications then absolutely i agree with you. Skype is a big one, Netflix, MLB at Bat, etc. IF you get more playbooks out there (millions more) these applications will come naturally.
    I agree that 500K apps are not necessary. However, the apps need to be available for OS7 devices, not just Playbooks. For instance, the MLB app might be useful even for a business user who is traveling on the road. He might want to listen to his favorite team's games while driving in his car, and keeping a Playbook on the seat might not be so convenient. It seems like OS7 is losing, not gaining, a lot of apps that were formerly available for BlackBerry. I know the Starbucks app is another one; yes, I know there is a workaround for the Starbucks app, but folks who do not visit this forum would not know how to get it. And even if Playbook had Starbucks app despite handsets not having it, someone might not bother to take a Playbook to Starbucks just to get coffee to go even if he owns a Playbook.
    03-08-12 10:15 AM
  4. Sith_Apprentice's Avatar
    BB7 is a tough sell on its own. With the platform so fragmented its hard to justify developing for the BB Java os. yes its still around, yes its used by millions, but apps arent necessarily going to work BB7 > 6 >5 > 4 etc. If you could get users onto 7 (the vast majority 60-75% ) you would see tons of apps popping up.
    03-08-12 10:19 AM
  5. randall2580's Avatar
    RIM becomes relevant again when every time you see "works on iOS" and "works on Android" you see "works on BB10". That might be the case when the BB10 phones come out and exploit HTML5 to the fullest.
    03-08-12 10:21 AM
  6. Laura Knotek's Avatar
    BB7 is a tough sell on its own. With the platform so fragmented its hard to justify developing for the BB Java os. yes its still around, yes its used by millions, but apps arent necessarily going to work BB7 > 6 >5 > 4 etc. If you could get users onto 7 (the vast majority 60-75% ) you would see tons of apps popping up.
    At this point, I believe the only way to get those users still on older BBOS to upgrade to OS7 devices would be to have a "fire sale" similar to what was done with the Playbook, or to offer a significant discount on BB10 devices to customers who choose to upgrade to OS7 devices now.
    03-08-12 10:25 AM
  7. black.rhino's Avatar
    As was stated earlier, RIM needs to take BBM, and ingrain it in the OS. Video chat, document sharing, into their apps, everything. They need a cloud service, and bbm group document sharing would make good use of cloud collaboration. BBM needs to be a blackberry users first choice for sharing anything.
    app_Developer likes this.
    03-08-12 10:26 AM
  8. DenverRalphy's Avatar
    Once you remove the proprietary technology why do people pay for your premium cost hardware?
    RIM needs to make non proprietary work with their products, but the proprietary model is what brings you higher margins.
    Perhaps I wasn't as clear as I intended to be. I am by no means discounting the need or use for proprietary technology. I meant more that the proprietary technology should not inhibit the interoperability with other platforms, which is pretty much what you mention with making non-proprietary working with their products. In some cases there should also be the ability to communicate with other proprietary services (ie. exchange/activesync).
    03-08-12 10:32 AM
  9. Sith_Apprentice's Avatar
    Carriers want less RIM service costs, and Carriers DO want data conservation, they want to maximize their revenue per KB of data, which is why they are already moving to teired data plans,
    I gave reasons in earlier posts and strategies.
    Carriers have provisions in place to conserve data. Throttling, charging extra, etc. RIM does not offer them any additional money for this, in fact it would have the carriers make less money by allowing users to be on a smaller tier, and still accomplish everything they want.
    03-08-12 10:39 AM
  10. app_Developer's Avatar
    Congratulations on the mature, balanced, realistic discussion in this thread. I think it's great.

    Most of these ideas make a lot of sense. I would add/emphasize a couple:

    a.) I think RIM needs to stop talking about future products, including software. I understand they feel some pressure to demonstrate that they have all these cool things they're working on, but really the only thing that proves capability is shipping products. Everything else is just talk, and that talk hurts the company in many ways. So I would say just stop talking and ship good things. Everything else will turn around nicely if you do that. It's obvious that trying to impress analysts by talking about future products and making cool demos hasn't worked.

    b.) The need for a CMO is obvious, but I would also look closely at their leadership on the software side. There's been a lot of misses there. And, even looking at QNX, if you believe the kernel is as superior as some believe, then the question is why has it had such a limited impact on the computing industry in general over the last 20 years (even when it was open source). It's not that people hadn't heard of it. All sorts of companies experimented with it in the 90s. So if you believe the kernel is a tremendous improvement over Linux, for example, then it is also true that the QNX team didn't do a great job of unlocking its value. So I would look at bringing in some fresh talent then to look at that issue. Perhaps a Silicon Valley research facility, like what Microsoft built, would be a good step to get some fresh eyes on everything.

    c.) There cannot be a bigger priority for this year than getting the SDK, including Cascades, in shape for BB10 launch. There's been a lot said about 500k apps versus good apps. It's not a choice between those two. If you make good tools, then you'll get both. Yes, you'll get a bunch of useless apps, but you'll also get the apps you want.
    Last edited by app_Developer; 03-08-12 at 11:20 AM.
    Sith_Apprentice and undone like this.
    03-08-12 11:17 AM
  11. Sith_Apprentice's Avatar
    Those all are excellent ideas app_Developer. I would like to point out on the second point (b) that QNX is already embedded in many technologies, much of which people dont even realize they use. Many car companies use QNX in their vehicles, high speed trains, nuclear power plants, etc. I think the reason that QNX has not made a bigger splash, is the same reason RIM is hurting right now. There really hasnt been much consumerization of the product. Its been business, and very specialized business at that.
    03-08-12 11:40 AM
  12. Detective M Downs's Avatar
    Unfortunately, MS now has very good reason not to support this, since they are in direct competition with RIM with their WP7 platform, which does have Office baked in. A W8 tablet is coming.

    This is a problem, I think. WP has Office integrated with SkyDrive; Android has Google Docs integrated with its own cloud services. Apple has iCloud. RIM has no cloud app suite. This is a "tool" kind of a thing and it's where the industry has been headed for a while now. Once again, RIM needs to catch up. Maybe they could get Zoho to develop something.
    RIM has a cloud service, Newbay which they purchased last year. And, they showed the service off in the porsche concept car at both previous conferences.
    03-08-12 11:57 AM
  13. Blacklatino's Avatar
    @Sith, thanks for starting this thread. Being the transitioning software prior to BB10, I agree. BB7 has been a hard sell and we know the story behind the lack of themes and apps. So like others, I'm appreciative to those that stepped up by either making themes or updating their apps for us. The problem now is how many of those currently on OS 4 thru 6, and now 7 are going to actually upgrade to BB10 later this year(?) or actually plan on getting an updated Playbook as opposed to being enticed to something else? Time will have the ultimate answer. If OS 7 was meant to be a bandaid on a bullet wound(due to the constant negative reviews and the impending release of BB10 devices), it seems too little, too late to fight off the backlash against RIM. Hopefully RIM will review and brainstorm on the current ideas posted in this thread and above all, don't rule out anything that can help change the current situation.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    03-08-12 12:02 PM
  14. app_Developer's Avatar
    Those all are excellent ideas app_Developer. I would like to point out on the second point (b) that QNX is already embedded in many technologies, much of which people dont even realize they use. Many car companies use QNX in their vehicles, high speed trains, nuclear power plants, etc. I think the reason that QNX has not made a bigger splash, is the same reason RIM is hurting right now. There really hasnt been much consumerization of the product. Its been business, and very specialized business at that.
    Well, the computing industry is huge, with so many thousands of applications. I know where QNX has been used, and I know they did have $40 million in annual revenue before the acquisition, largely in transportation. But those are pretty tiny numbers and a handful of narrow applications compared to the industry as a whole.

    Making a consumer operating system is a *much* bigger challenge than making a handful of embedded systems. In little verticals with a few hand-coded applications, you can get by with less than great APIs or less than great tools or less than great documentation. That doesn't scale well when you have thousands of third-party developers.

    So anyway, without dragging this thread into the weeds of the pros/cons of QNX (which I'm still really not that impressed with technically), I would say I still think RIM needs to beef up their software management to compete with companies like Microsoft and Google.
    03-08-12 12:03 PM
  15. Sith_Apprentice's Avatar
    Well, the computing industry is huge, with so many thousands of applications. I know where QNX has been used, and I know they did have $40 million in annual revenue before the acquisition, largely in transportation. But those are pretty tiny numbers and a handful of narrow applications compared to the industry as a whole.

    Making a consumer operating system is a *much* bigger challenge than making a handful of embedded systems. In little verticals with a few hand-coded applications, you can get by with less than great APIs or less than great tools or less than great documentation. That doesn't scale well when you have thousands of third-party developers.

    So anyway, without dragging this thread into the weeds of the pros/cons of QNX (which I'm still really not that impressed with technically), I would say I still think RIM needs to beef up their software management to compete with companies like Microsoft and Google.
    I do think you are right, dont get me wrong. Their dev tools are less than stellar. QNX is built along reliability, that doesnt make it any better at, gaming, for instance, than another application. in fact the way the kernel is designed it might actually make it worse. The threaded approach that QNX uses is excellent when it works properly, and having to never do a hard reboot on a device again would be fantastic. But as we can see, the theory of QNX didnt translate to the Tablet OS exactly.

    But you are correct, lets not drag this into pros/cons of QNX lol. Excellent input everyone, keep it coming!
    03-08-12 12:10 PM
  16. zethaaron's Avatar
    I agree, the new PlayBook definitely needs 4G LTE (especially now that it is a fact the iPad 3 has it), as well as a 1.5Ghz dual core processor. Another thing I'd like to see is 2GB of ram. The last PlayBook had twice the ram as the iPad, and that was appealing to anyone who was seriously considering the PlayBook, if the new iPad has 1GB (we won't really know until they go into the market and someone does a tear-down, but it is presumed to be 1GB), then the PlayBook having 2GB would be excellent. 1GB vs 512MB was good, but 2GB vs 1GB would be a real kick in the teeth, hardware wise. Also, with all the hype surrounding the iPad's new high resolution screen, we need to upgrade the PlayBook's. Not, perhaps, to the level of the iPad, but definitely upgrade it, at least so we can say we did too. Also, MAKE ADAPTERS, the iPad can brag about all the different things you can use with it but it's all through adapters, different adapters for the micro USB port would be an excellent new thing to market.
    03-08-12 12:13 PM
  17. Sith_Apprentice's Avatar
    I agree, the new PlayBook definitely needs 4G LTE (especially now that it is a fact the iPad 3 has it), as well as a 1.5Ghz dual core processor. Another thing I'd like to see is 2GB of ram. The last PlayBook had twice the ram as the iPad, and that was appealing to anyone who was seriously considering the PlayBook, if the new iPad has 1GB (we won't really know until they go into the market and someone does a tear-down, but it is presumed to be 1GB), then the PlayBook having 2GB would be excellent. 1GB vs 512MB was good, but 2GB vs 1GB would be a real kick in the teeth, hardware wise. Also, with all the hype surrounding the iPad's new high resolution screen, we need to upgrade the PlayBook's. Not, perhaps, to the level of the iPad, but definitely upgrade it, at least so we can say we did too. Also, MAKE ADAPTERS, the iPad can brag about all the different things you can use with it but it's all through adapters, different adapters for the micro USB port would be an excellent new thing to market.
    I dont believe we will see a screen upgrade. The Playbook screen looks excellent as is. RAM I would like to see, but frankly I have seen 11+ apps open with no to minimal lag on the current tablet, and if the CPU gets upgraded (to 1.5ghz) serious gaming shouldnt be an issue either.

    As for the adapters, what would you like it to have? It already has 2 ports that can adapt to pretty much anything else with commercial adapters readily available.
    03-08-12 12:16 PM
  18. Shlooky's Avatar
    I dont believe we will see a screen upgrade. The Playbook screen looks excellent as is. RAM I would like to see, but frankly I have seen 11+ apps open with no to minimal lag on the current tablet, and if the CPU gets upgraded (to 1.5ghz) serious gaming shouldnt be an issue either.

    As for the adapters, what would you like it to have? It already has 2 ports that can adapt to pretty much anything else with commercial adapters readily available.
    You think the same way RIM does which is why they are in the situation they are in.

    Yes screen resolution is important, the PB screen is only 1024x600 which does not support full HD playback at 1080P. It's a major selling feature!
    not everyone wants a 7inch screen, I believe a nice 10inch screen is great and contrary to the fan boys is just as portable.

    What sells a tablet is it's feature set + apps, additional RAM, flexibility, scalability, and third party vendor support is extremely important. This is why the iProducts are soo successful.
    Where are the developers for the PB? How many PB apps in app world again?
    CrackedBarry likes this.
    03-08-12 12:31 PM
  19. CrackedBarry's Avatar
    What sells a tablet is it's feature set + apps, additional RAM, flexibility, scalability, and third party vendor support is extremely important. This is why the iProducts are soo successful.
    Where are the developers for the PB? How many PB apps in app world again?
    Very true... I actually had a Playbook for ten days, before I returned it. There were certainly things I liked about it... The size and the screen. The pretty fluid OS. I might even have lived without an email/PIM suite, though it made it feel incomplete and half***ed. What I couldn't live with however, was how dire the app situation was. Podcasts are pretty important for me, so one time I looked to the app market to see what was available: Zero... That's when I decided enough was enough.

    Unfortunately for RIM, that's when they lost me, and many others I suspect, as customers. It doesn't matter that the OS upgrade includes email, etc. it's old hardware now, and I got a different tablet now anyways, and I suspect that's how most people who returned the PB feel. They. Ought get me back as a customer, which is why a new Playbook2 is important.
    03-08-12 12:41 PM
  20. Sith_Apprentice's Avatar
    You think the same way RIM does which is why they are in the situation they are in.

    Yes screen resolution is important, the PB screen is only 1024x600 which does not support full HD playback at 1080P. It's a major selling feature!
    not everyone wants a 7inch screen, I believe a nice 10inch screen is great and contrary to the fan boys is just as portable.

    What sells a tablet is it's feature set + apps, additional RAM, flexibility, scalability, and third party vendor support is extremely important. This is why the iProducts are soo successful.
    Where are the developers for the PB? How many PB apps in app world again?

    Ok, resolution and DPI are two completely different (but related) things. Also, screen size is something of a personal preference as well. That being said, the PB supports full 1080p via HDMI out (and though I havent seen it only have been told about it, supports 3D 1080p as well). You are very correct that this is not possible on the current screen.

    I also said I dont believe we will see a screen upgrade, talking about the 4G/3G 7" playbooks coming out in the next couple of months. From the specs I have seen the screen has not changed.

    10" variant does exist and is in testing. It is NOT as portible as a 7" device, just as a 7" device isnt as portable as a 4" device etc etc. Does this make it (10" device) not portable? No, not at all. We will likely see the 10" tablet late this year around the BB10 launch.

    Apples products are no doubt successful. But keep in mind the PB has a higher dpi than the iPad2. DPI isnt everything, nor is screen size, RAM, CPU, etc. Customers want it to do what they want, and how they want it. Apple's entire ecosystem is VERY polished and VERY integrated. RIM needs that in order to compete. Most people dont care, or even know about specs. Just keep that in mind.
    03-08-12 12:42 PM
  21. Sith_Apprentice's Avatar
    Very true... I actually had a Playbook for ten days, before I returned it. There were certainly things I liked about it... The size and the screen. The pretty fluid OS. I might even have lived without an email/PIM suite, though it made it feel incomplete and half***ed. What I couldn't live with however, was how dire the app situation was. Podcasts are pretty important for me, so one time I looked to the app market to see what was available: Zero... That's when I decided enough was enough.

    Unfortunately for RIM, that's when they lost me, and many others I suspect, as customers. It doesn't matter that the OS upgrade includes email, etc. it's old hardware now, and I got a different tablet now anyways, and I suspect that's how most people who returned the PB feel. They. Ought get me back as a customer, which is why a new Playbook2 is important.

    Applications are now much more necessary than they ever have been. And at least for the short term they will continue to be. RIM is trying to attract devs to the platform (BB10 is the goal, the Playbook is just the route there), but they need to get more QNX devices in the hands of people in order to do that.
    03-08-12 12:45 PM
  22. Superfly_FR's Avatar
    wow ... I sincerely hope someone at RIM's headquarters actually monitors this (all above).
    I think I've not the skills to give a lighted advice to RIM. But I'm optimistic, due to my reading of the past and current situation, so I may dare to write this :

    1/ RIM stays calm, no show-off, no (more) mockery while creating some targeted interest in many parts of the world and some enthusiasm in their own country.
    2/ At the same time, RIM is re-building the brand image; this is the current adv. campaign.
    3/ Pieces of the puzzle (devices, apps/developers, services, software) are (close to) mature (OS2, PB, BES+Fusion/Balance)
    4/ BB10 OS and BB10 devices (incl. hardware upgraded PBs) should be arriving "in a snap". They feed the most rumored news (BBM, DLNA, QNX interoperability, ...). RIM keep them rumored, not a word, not a comment : nice move.
    5/ Widely forgotten, BB Cloud - announced running office 365, nothing less ! - will also, by itself, resolve numerous issues about software quality. At a point I believe professional apps (office but also SAP or other major actors) won't ever be able to reach its "power".

    So, to answer your question, Sith, I guess they just have now to assemble all the pieces of the puzzle into the first "all in one flow". From your business work to your PIM and your Angry Birds scores.
    All of that secure, respectful of your privacy and with sexy tools; yes, I wrote sexy: end user device must be sexy ... for both private fun and work as much as for boys and girls.

    Once this is done and polished like chrome silver ... hire evangelists, hire community managers (sry but for now ... it's pathetic), beat the pavement, create events, sponsor events, advertise to pros, advertise to companies, advertise to users, give away demo devices, offer free "express fusion+BES" to small corps ...
    In brief : flood the medias to death.
    But there's only 1 or two bullet(s) in their six-shot ... fighting with a pistol grip won't be easy if they fail.
    Last edited by Superfly_FR; 03-08-12 at 12:59 PM.
    Sith_Apprentice likes this.
    03-08-12 12:56 PM
  23. Sith_Apprentice's Avatar
    Superfly_FR i agree with much of what you have said. RIM needs to put the things they have been working on, together, and make sure they are POLISHED. Dont release products that are incomplete just because you want to get them out the door. That will do nothing but hurt you. (Playbook). Release it when it is ready, and flood the media with it.
    Superfly_FR likes this.
    03-08-12 01:08 PM
  24. loc5's Avatar
    Well, time for RIM to listen to consumers, and don't tell me what I want and need.

    I want a 10 inch PB, and I can choose color as well.
    I want keyboard dock just like the ASUS Transformer, but with hard drive in it.
    Also support other USB device like a USB to Serial or memory stick.

    BB10 phones? they better not coming out with one 1 model. They better have multiple models, touch screen, keyboard, high end, low end, big screen or small screen.

    If they don't know how to innovate, hire someone can, inject new ideas into the system.
    03-08-12 01:35 PM
  25. Sith_Apprentice's Avatar
    10" Playbook is being tested. Colors, not sure what we will see on that front. Keyboard dock is a nice idea, though with the BT keyboard/mouse support not sure we will see this. The hard drive is a nice touch, didnt even think of that. Could put a nice SSD in there to act as a secondary hard drive. USB Host support is still "coming", though in what capacity I dont know.

    A few models I can see, but they need to stop trying to make a dozen models for their phones. 3 or so should be max IMO. Full touch, bold type, slider. Past that they just get bogged down in manufacturing and confusing customers.
    03-08-12 01:42 PM
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