RIM is dying, sure. But what's a demise without a few good death throes? On the heels of yesterday's scathing anonymous teardown of the BlackBerry maker—and RIM's counterpoint—comes a new wave of malcontented employees. BGR's got more grumblings from the BlackBerry's underbelly. [BGR]
RIM today, Apple tomorrow.
My predictions using nothing but "history repeats itself" is proving dead accurate looking at parallel industries of Home Audio and Home Theater...
Just like the MP3 took over from CD (instead of higher-end SACD), now we see lower-quality streaming video taking over from DVD instead of BluRay - which haven't even made it as a majority element on the shelves of the rental places (that are still open) yet.
Similarly, we've seen RIM grow, having a perception as an innovative company way back, growing large and arrogant, thinking it's products defined the paradigm even after the paradigm moved on - and now it's possibly too late to play catch up to even stay in the race as a competitor.
Apple is almost walking an identical path with the iPhone... and they've got the extra risk of the iPad's success masking a risk of iOS specific to iPhone:
Once very innovative (like RIM), the paradigm shifted to an iPhone-like touchscreen-based model of flexibility and do-everything-with-one-device - Apple's model (like BlackBerry had achieved, years prior). And Apple has stayed put, becoming conservative and arrogant (like RIM had with BlackBerry).
Many models later, all iterative (like RIM), and Apple's marketshare has remained stuck at 20% for over a year now (just like RIM's was at 35% before finally turning downwards, to freefall)... the predicted return to marketshare growth due to Verizon didn't happen, save for a blurp (RIM had the Storm... then the Torch...).
Android growth rates continue to increase, and there's a new player in town with WP7 - insignificant today, but watch out. (With RIM it *WAS* the iPhone unseating the throne)
Apple is feeling the pressure, like RIM did, and for the first time is in catch-up mode - adding features found in Android and WP7 that it's resisted adding for years. That's very notable:
Perhaps sadly, these additions will make for the most radically different iOS EVER since launch... a departure from Apple's solid stance on one particular architecture (just like RIM) that they've been so conservatively afraid to significantly evolve (just like RIM - perhaps more so, having only ONE iPhone model, period - like it or leave it... hello, Android).
Let's see if iOS5 is the first step to Apple strategically positioning to maintain relevance, and whether they can without being obvious about following, rather than defining, the always-evolving smartphone paradigm - or whether Apple is going to follow in RIM's footsteps where they are perceived to have departed too far from it - despite some enthusiastic fanboy hangers-on (just like RIM).
It makes RIM's story exceptionally interesting to follow.
And relevant to follow - even if you've written off RIM entirely.