It wasn’t too long ago that BlackBerry was considered a major player within the cell phone market. They provided a much needed service for a particular niche that no other phone manufacturer could fill. Research In Motion designed BlackBerry to be the ideal companion to the everyday professional worker, a device that offered email, chat, and task management functionality; all simple and practical functions that many owners loved. The emergence of Apple and Android devices overwhelmed RIM’s efforts, as they struggled to keep up with the two rising giants. Is there really any room for a third-wheel? Nokia certainly wouldn’t be it, as they’ve fallen quite far from there humble beginnings. Microsoft hopes to reinvigorate its base with Windows 8. Where does BlackBerry stand?
RIM’s recently released report shows that the company will be at its lowest levels since 2006, as they continue to lose market share. Investors are frustrated by the lack of sales and constant product delays that are crippling the company’s reputation. The recently released BlackBerry Play was a promising device, but ultimately fell short and was difficult to market to major carriers. RIM won’t likely be able to sustain their current model if sales continue to dip.
In our previous article, we addressed the issue of where RIM should shift its strategy. If RIM loses market share within the United States, it may be possible for it to deliver more affordable versions of their devices to other developing markets. However, Google’s Android is also making its way into more affordable options. What will their strategy be?
Whether BlackBerry survives the oncoming meltdown or fades away into the black, will ultimately be decided by where they shift their current strategy. We certainly don’t think abandoning their base and creating avatars is quite what the should do. As of now, RIM appears lost and confused on where they are and what they want to be.