RIM CEO currently Using An Ultra Device for L-series, for BlackBerry 10
Blackberry’s future is the tech debate du jour, with pundits on either side promising either a BB10 renaissance or a slow-motion tailspin.
TechChrunch took a few moments to speak with RIM CEO Thorsten Heins about RIM’s way forward and where BB10 was going to put the company when it launches.
What I found really interesting was the fact that he is using a form of L-Series for BlackBerry 10. Thats great to hear as it should reassure us all that BlackBerry 10 is on it’s way.
We wanted to see what was in store for the consumer, what RIM is doing to maintain the energy that a lot of the BlackBerry users currently have, especially at work or in academia. What do you see as the best way forward for those folks?
So we are absolutely working on our consumer and enterprise base to get us to BlackBerry 7, which is a real upgraded experience compared to 5 and 6, and to a certain extent also 6. That’s the first thing we are doing.
Second is we are working on the BB10 platform to be launched in the first quarter next year. And this is not, as I said, based on a QWERTY device, which is a device type we dominate today. This will get us back into the full touch game, and this is where we will fight hard in the U.S. to regain market share and convince consumers that, well, BlackBerry is not just a great platform for productivity or for business people; it’s a great platform for consumers as well.
We will specifically talk to those consumers that are constantly on the move or need to stay ahead and introduce them to BB10. Given the ease of adoptions for this platform it will be a great gaming experience, a great media experience, and a great content experience.
It seems like BlackBerry itself has always been very specific about the email side of things. Is your vision to bring the company into more direct competition with the iOS/Android situation, or is email still paramount?
In today’s world, email is not the only way to communicate anymore: it is Twittering, Facebook, BBMing, and other means of social communication networking.
So what it really is about, I think, is to put a different frame around it and say “We keep you extremely well-connected through your various communication channels and we are making it really easy to deal with and to manage and to respond to notifications.”
In terms of BB10, are you at all concerned that the time involved in releasing this update is going to affect things negatively, and especially with 7-inch iPad rumors swirling?
But on the other side, I just want this to be the best user experience, the best compelling quality that people see on a BlackBerry, and I will not sacrifice this. I just want this experience to be fantastic. And that’s what we are working towards.
So knowing what we are building our BlackBerry 10 on, the product, the capabilities, the empowerment it actually gives to the people that use it, I have no concerns about our success. We will be successful.
Also if you look at the channels that we are serving, basically through the carriers, they see not just the risk anymore, I think they see reality coming that there’s a duopoly of suppliers they can work with and that they can source from right now.
They have a huge installed base of BlackBerry customers out there, they want to protect that installed base. They want them to be successful too. We get a lot of endorsement from carriers and the carrier partners globally on BlackBerry 10. So I am confident that we will make a good appearance in the rest of the world, but I am also confident that we are actually in a position to fight back in the U.S. based on the BlackBerry 10 portfolio.
I guess it seems like people need a pep talk. So what would you say to the folks who say, “RIM isn’t thinking about us specifically, us early adopters, us hardcore BB users, we haven’t put down our BlackBerry since the late 90s.” What will you say to them?
It’s not just about you communicating with somebody else; it’s about actually communicating with the whole network around you. So the strength in this whole social network and the strength is also in other elements that are not particularly BlackBerry elements, like gaming, because the platform supports it. We will not develop our own games, but the platform we are building allows game developers to program and to deliver really fantastic-performing games.
I myself, I use PlayBook a lot to play racing games because I can look at PlayBook from a performance perspective and say, with the highest rendering requirement, with the highest load on the graphic unit, is it a good performance, is it a good experience? And it is.
And how many BlackBerrys do you carry around with you?
You don’t have a secret Google Galaxy Nexus hidden in there somewhere?