My article from April 30th, Delusional CEO of Company Scrambling for Distant Third Place Says They’ll Be the “Absolute Leader” in Five Years, has been getting crazy hits since yesterday morning, thanks to its money quote:
“In five years, I see BlackBerry to be the absolute leader in mobile computing — that’s what we’re aiming for.”
Of course, we all had to keep in mind that as CEO, Heins’ job is to play the part of the cheerleader, boost confidence in his company and not say things like “O-M-G, we’re so dead.”
However, industry pundits have a different job: to read the tea leaves and call ’em as they see ’em. Here are some notable predictions that I saved in my bookmarks for a later date…
Jim Cramer, March 21 and 29, 2012: “I believe that in a few months from now, it’ll be clear that RIM did well”
On The Street on March 21, 2012, Jim “Mad Money / Bear Stearns is fine” Cramer, said that although RIM’s share price was dropping at the time, that it was the right time to buy:
- “RIM right now is the established player, not Apple.”
- “I believe that in a few months from now, it’ll be clear that RIM did well.”
A mere eight days later — March 29, 2012 — he’s singing a slightly different tune: “Things have passed [RIM] by, just the way Nokia got passed by”:
BerryReview, September 12, 2011: “The two main players would be Apple and RIM”
Why I Think RIM Will Succeed…The QNX Powered Comeback, published in BerryReview on September 12th, 2011, includes these gems:
- “I have been of the opinion for a while that Android and Android users have no tech identity beyond a very small rabid tech programming geek community. The average Android user doesn’t identify with the Android Platform nor does the Android Platform identify with the average user. I think Android users are the ones that are most likely to switch back to Blackberry. Android carries NO cache, no history, no track record and no loyalty in its users.“
- “Android development will slow in the next 12-24 months.“
- “Ice Cream Sandwich, ICS, will hit in the coming months, and, we generally know that it will not be anything revolutionary, just incremental.“
- “Whoever is first to this race will likely be the winner and really, the two main players would be Apple and RIM. Android is in no way remotely stable enough to get into this business and Microsoft’s OS is way too new and unpopular to enter the space. If RIM can get into this segment of the industry first, they have a strong chance of being the dominant force in the industry. QNX gives them that head start that Apple doesn’t have.“
IT World Canada, October 9, 2012: “RIM is NOT another Nortel”
10 Solid Reasons RIM Will Make a Comeback roots for the home team, which I can get behind. For the longest time, RIM was a source of Canadian pride, and one of the examples I’d cite in a speech I’d open with “Since Alexander Graham Bell, Canada has always punched above its weight class in communications technologies.”
However, when I first read this article, it lost me at its first reason for a RIM comeback: “Developers believe in BB10”. It turns out that these were developers working for RIM: “I personally know several developers who are still working for RIM and who are not the least bit interested in jumping ship.” That’s because you don’t jump ship before something you’ve worked on ships; you do it afterwards. Otherwise, you don’t have as good an answer when interviewing at your next gig and the “So what was the last project you worked on?” question comes up.
CNBC, November 26, 2012: RIM Could Rise on Wings of BlackBerry 10: Pro
The rationale in the article RIM Could Rise on Wings of BlackBerry 10: Pro comes from delusional National Bank analyst Kris Thompson: “”We don’t want to bet against the dollars flowing to the stock,” and “They have 80 million subscribers today. A lot of us are very loyal. Think about the business users that like to generate a lot of emails during the day: it’s very difficult to do that on a lot of the competing platforms with a virtual keyboard.”
He does emphasize that the investments that were leading to a rising stock price — one that he predicted could go as high as $20 (it did hit $17.90 on January 22nd) — are “speculative” and not based on “fundamentals”.
CIO, December 28, 2012: Why 2013 is RIM’s BlackBerry Year
Rob Enderle, the analyst whom Dell hired to help them with their efforts in taking on Apple with making an MP3 player and getting into music — an effort even more forgotten than Microsoft’s Zune — bet on the wrong horse again when he explained Why 2013 is RIM’s BlackBerry Year. His wrongness is best summed up in the second-last paragraph of the article:
I’ve had some time to talk to RIM about its upcoming platform, and it appears to address each one of these shortcomings with a vengeance. BlackBerry 10 is based on an OS that is used to operate machinery. RIM started with a business oriented core and then addressed consumer needs—as opposed to the more common approach of putting a business façade over a device that was targeted first at consumers.
Of course, the PC industry in which Rob plays (and often gets so, so wrong) got started by going consumer-first, then adding the business stuff later. They were either hobbyist machines like the Apple II and TRS-80, and even the original IBM PC was created by the dismissively-named “Entry Level Systems Division”, which hinted that it was something to tide you over until you got a big-boy computer like one of their mainframes or minis.