Be Bold, proclaim the latest Research in Motion adverts… and for a moment it seemed that the company had taken its own advice. Reporting another dire quarter, a clear out of several senior executives, including co-founder Jim Balsillie, RIM appeared also to be turning its attention back to its core Enterprise customers and giving up on its efforts to conquer the consumer market currently owned by Apple’s iPhone and Android devices.
Just hours later, however, RIM stepped back from this – announcing in a blog that it remained committed to the consumer market. What happened to ‘Be Bold’?
I wrote a couple of weeks ago that I believed that RIM itself was the biggest threat to the ongoing success of the company. I thought, it had, perhaps seen the light… giving itself a chance at redemption… sadly, it appears intent on pressing the self-destruct button. Unless RIM does what it implores its customers and prospects to do, the company’s fortunes will, I believe, continue their downward spiral.
Here are a few reason’s why RIM’s continued failure to drop its designs on the consumer market and refocus its efforts on the Enterprise market will eventually be its downfall:
- Continued confusion over messaging, resulting in a failure to connect with both customers and would-be BlackBerry-ers
- A lack of targeted apps to appeal to either corporate or consumer customers
- Compromised handset design – is it a serious productivity tool, a consumer ‘toy’ or a hybrid that fails to appeal to either customer group
- Disillusionment of employees and a failure to attract the top talent needed to make RIM great again
- A perception [and reality?] that RIM is continuously playing catch-up to iOS and Android devices
- Erosion of its existing Enterprise client base, as BYOD strategies become increasingly common
- Falling sales
- Falling stock price
Unless it takes its own advice and is Bold… soon, Canada will lose another a tech institution – most likely to Apple. Sooner, rather than later. C’mon RIM – #BeBold