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And Blackberry's Big Idea is....Get Rid of the Keyboard?

Steven Blum
6

Blackberry 10

I hesitate writing this because, at this point in time, beating up on Blackberry just seems mean. They're losing in almost every market, except among certain denizens of D.C., they have no clear strategy, no leadership, no direction and now...no keyboard as well? Yes, that's right, in order to save the company, Blackberry is nixing one of their few remaining selling points –  the physical keyboard. What the hell are they thinking?

At a press event in Orlando, Florida, RIM – the company behind Blackberry – unveiled a new prototype called the Blackberry 10. Featuring a touch-screen display, the phone relies on "swipe gestures and word suggestions," (welcome to 2009, Blackerry). According to new Blackberry CEO Thorston Heins, "It's all about making things flow."

Ugh.

Worse still, the new platform for this phone won't accomodate the (admittedly few and far between) apps made for the rest of the Blackberry line of phones, meaning most developers will have to start from scratch. As a result of the tepid reaction to the new phone, stock prices tumbled yet again on the day of the big premiere.

It's easy to understand why. The new Blackberry 10 line of phones isn't even out yet, and most likely won't launch until after the reveal of the iPhone 5, Windows 8 and plenty of new Android devices.

At this point, I really take no joy in reporting in Blackberry's downfall. Each and every one of their most recent moves has been a disaster, and this is just one more. I wish I knew what the answer was for them, but I just don't. Nixing the keyboard, though? That has got to be one of the worse ideas, and could alienate them from their already dwindling fanbase.

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Comments

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  • Zona Reload May 2, 2012 Link

    good

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  • Ambika Maggu May 2, 2012 Link

    I completely agree with Steven Blum, the blog writer… A company should never play with their USP and keypad is definitely one of their USP. I own a BlackBerry and just love how smooth it is to write any message or mail as compared to the touch screen I had earlier… I feel the company needs to relax and think with a cool mind & revise their marketing strategy instead of playing with their Unique Selling Points (USP).

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  • Eric McBride May 2, 2012 Link

    I also agree with this. Dont mess with your unique selling points.

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  • Ambika Maggu May 2, 2012 Link

    Yes that is what I am saying Eric that they should not mess with their USP...other wise they can kiss their remaining market Good Bye...

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  • chinu May 2, 2012 Link

    cant believe...that they r on the way to destroy their unique identity......

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  • Eric McBride May 2, 2012 Link

    @Ambika - Sorry about that! I thought you said you disagreed, not agreed. I edited my comment :-D

    And you're totally right. RIM has obviously no idea what they are doing. A shame actually, as the newest blackberry with keyboard and touch screen is actually really nice.

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